IT’S CERTAINLY A CAT’S LIFE CHOOSING THE RIGHT CATTERY

By David Surtees

An important part of planning your holiday is finding suitable accommodation for your cat. You don’t compromise your holiday hotel, so why put your family pet in anything less than the best? Read on to find out how to make the best choice.

CHECK OUT LOCALLY

Your pet is important to you and you want to know they are safe and healthy while you are away on holiday. Don’t leave finding a cattery until the last moment as the best will always be booked up early, especially if it’sduring the busiest holiday times. Leave plenty of time and visit local premises. You can then check out the facilities, cleanliness and general feel of the place. The owners should be only too willing to give you a guided tour and answer any questions you might have.

Visit two or three in your immediate area and check that they are licensed by their local authority. There should be a certificate on show confirming this. Take time over your selection because, after all, you want to leave your little “katter” in the very best hands.

The cattery owners should ask for valid proof of up to date immunisations and worming, so ascertain that your “katter” is in the very best of health and protected from all the known illnesses and viruses. A good cattery is a healthy cattery and you should be asked to provide documentary evidence. If you are not, then take it with you to show anyway. Conversely, if you are not asked, then perhaps that cattery is not worth consideration.

WHAT TO LOOK FOR

Ideally the staff should be friendly and caring and willing to show you around. Check that the accommodation is secure and adequately lit, ventilated and heated. Is there a double door system? This is important as escape is always possible and this will ensure your pet can’t run outside.

Is there a vet on call round the clock and have you been asked to fill in a questionnaire about the needs of your pet? Is the cattery able to cope with any special grooming or medical requirements?

Is there adequate partitioning between pens and are they secure? Cats from different households should be kept apart to minimise the risk of spreading any infection. There should be a ‘sneeze’ barrier between pens to ensure this does not happen.

A good cattery will suggest you bring in your pet’s bed and favourite toys. This all helps alleviate any stress that leaving your pet in a strange environment can bring about. The pen should also have a playing area and a sleeping compartment and a clean litter tray which has been disinfected. Check other pens to see if litter trays are regularly cleaned.

If you are visiting several catteries take a check list. That way you won’t miss anything out.

Having made your choice you can now go and enjoy your holiday safe in the knowledge that your “katter” is in the very best hands. He will have a comfortable time and you will know you have made the very best choice for your pet.

About the Author

David Surtees writes regularly on pet subjects for a range of websites and blogs. Click here to know more above how to look after your pets.

How To Improve Cat Health Issues In Blind Cats

Cats could become blind for many different reasons. Some are born with eye defects and will never be able to see, while others gradually lose their sight as a result of eye disease or accidents.  But cats are extremely adaptable and can still live life to the full with some caring assistance. Below is some basic advice on how you can help your blind cat improve cat health.

Respect

Try not to startle or scare your cat with loud noises. A blind cat will be very sensitive to sounds and hearing a door being slammed might cause distress. Gently talk to the cat for reassurance. When you approach your cat, talk to him in a soft voice or let him smell your hand before you touch him. Avoid sudden movements and picking him up without some warning.

Keep consistent

Generally, you can improve cat health by not moving your furniture around and keeping the cat’s environment as predictable as possible. It is also important to feed your cat at the same times each day and to leave food bowls and litter trays in the same place. Note that placing temporary items like clothes and bags in your cat’s way might cause unnecessary confusion.

Cat-proof your garden

Blind cats can enjoy the outdoors but it’s best for them if they are in an enclosed area and not left alone for a longer period. Alternatively, you can take your cat outside on a harness. Remember to microchip and tag your cat so that if he does get lost by accident, he can easily be tracked back to you.

Activate

Even though you cat is blind he will still be playful. Try to find toys with catnip that he can smell or with bells that he can hear. Hiding dry food in different areas of the house would also keep him busy. If your cat has just lost his sight he might feel less confident playing but keep encouraging and playing with him.

Watch the weight

To maintain excellent cat health it is imperative that you keep an eye on your cat’s weight. Blind cats can sometimes be much less active than a cat that can see, especially if it is kept indoors. It can be an additional health risk for a cat to become overweight or obese so if you observe any changes in your cat’s weight you should seek veterinary advice.

Pet Health Info offers free online information on a wide range of pet health issues, including cat health.