In these pandemic times, do your Cats need space or do your Cats need you?
As professional cat sitters and kitty caregivers, we have learned a lot about how to read a cat’s wants or needs when their hoomans travel. We also believe that over the years, cats have been mis-judged in many instances. You’ve probably heard that they are highly independent, low-maintenance, solo creatures, untamable and even untrainable. And, that anyone who really loves them or has many cats is C.R.A.Z.Y!
Well, truth be told, and old-stigmas be revoked, we are on a mission to help educate the world about Cat domination…. No wait, I lost my train of thought… We are simply here today to tell it as we see it; Cats may be aloof and show great Cattitude at times, but they are not self-sufficient, they hold tremendous affection for their humans, are highly dependent on them and their daily routines. So when things change, they react, often go recluse. Some say they hide, we say they retreat to their ‘safe spot’.
So here we all are in an unprecedented new year 2021; and many month’s post the initial COVID19 lockdown, when we first heard from our beloved Prince Waffles about how HE had to adjust to his humans being home, ALL Day and EVERY Day! (Again, a change in routine)
The question at the forefront now and as our beloved clients gear up the courage to take their first get-a-way driving North on the 101, or begin to book 2021 Holiday Travel to see long lost loved ones, we have to ask;
Who will have more Separation Anxiety? You or your Cat!(?)
You won’t be surprised when I say BOTH! We have seen our Slinky Cats and their humans both suffer when they are not together for the first time in months! It’s a huge adjustment for everyone. And you’ve probably already read lots of articles or posts on Social Media about Separation Anxiety and how it affects the animals we love. Needless to say, we have 3 tips to help ease the blow for you, your special feline, and adored cat sitter (us <^..^<) :
- Prepare your ameowzing kitty cat ahead of time. As in Pack Early. Take pictures of them on your suitcase protesting for Instagram, and then consider leaving an extra suitcase on the floor with a favorite T-Shirt or already slept on blankie on top. Cats feel great comfort and peace of mind around the scent of you. And although they DO know that you’ll be leaving soon, they can enjoy their new bed in your absence. A new toy wouldn’t hurt either! (hint hint)
- Plan to Travel in the Morning. Then reserve your Cat Sitter or Pet Sitter the evening of the day you travel. After 3 years of cat sitting, I can confidently tell you this is a GAME Changer for the kitties in our care. They see us in the evening, and know that you are not coming home vs. waiting up ALL night for you to come home. This has been so powerful to witness. Kitties who were alone that first night tend to go recluse and stay in their safe spot under the sofa for the entire staycation as opposed to kitties who saw us first, and NEVER hid at all. We believe so strongly in this knowing it is a game changer for the peace of mind your cat needs when you are separated. Not to mention the peace of mind it brings back to you. Let’s face it. You too are worried about how they will do that first night that you are away too especially after @X#$% Covid lockdown months!
- Book extra Pet Sitting Visits. If you are about to embark on your first pandemic travel experience, reach out! We are happy to tailor an ideal schedule of Daily Kitty Care Drop-In Visits while your away. We aren’t looking to break the bank, we know what works for your kitties and often help our clients with extra or sporadic visits if/when we feel Kitty may need some extra support.
So how do we know if you or your cat is suffering or will suffer from Separation Anxiety?
As professional cat sitters we first recognize the signs of concern in YOUR voice and are ready and able to discuss the best options for cat care during your time away from home. Cats are family. We get it and we understand your concerns. Our job is to minimize the upset for your kitties.
We love cats like you do, and can quickly recognize separation anxiety symptoms in cats, such as:
- Notable or unfamiliar changes in your cat’s normal behavior or daily routine (eating, sleeping, potty issues)
- Your cat is more recluse than usual – retreating to their ‘safe spot’ and not wanting to engage with their favorite cat sitter
- Your cat is meowing or ‘yeowling’ and showing physical signs of stress, hyper activity, or even an indication of fear – to flight and flee
- We may notice excessive grooming or hot spots developing often on the cat’s tummy
- Signs of desperation for affection upon arrival – often seen in kittens and younger cats
- Toss-ups of hairballs and/or food
- Leaving unwanted litter box presents in unusual places (i.e., your bed!)
- Door watching – we have several Slinky Cats that sit at the perfect angle to watch the front door
So what do we do to help your special feline adjust to time alone?
- If you have a noisy house, leaving it noisy at least part of the day is ideal. We often ask permission to say “Hey Google” play music for 2 hours and find the cats enjoy it.
- Within our cat lady bag we have enrichment toys and feeders that we bring in to help spike your kitties curiosity and appetite too.
- We keep our arrivals and departures low key and our demeanor relaxed all the time. Yes, we whisper to cats.
- Feliway or similar brands that produce cat pheromones help to clam cats, reduce stress and stress related behaviors. The spray is our new perfume, and easy to spritz a blanket or cat tree.
- We focus on your cat and their needs wherever they may be. Each kitty in our care receives individualized attention and affection at every visit.
- Don’t be surprised if we moved the furniture – Cat furniture that is. Slight modifications help cats engage and feel more secure. Especially if they can see the front door or out a window.
Traveling should not be stressful for you or your special felines. Book your cat sitting reservation with confidence and know that we have your’s and your kitties best interest at heart.
At Slinky Cat at Home, our motto is “Peace of Mind Kitty Care”.
That is our commitment to you and your cat(s).
Every Visit. Every Time.