People are often surprised to hear that we require every day visits for indoor cats. They assume that all cats are independent and only need food , water and a litter box to survive. But cats also rely on their owners for love, affection and knowing the signs when they are not feeling well.
When leaving town, some cat owners may leave out food and water for their cat for a few days instead of hiring a Professional Pet Sitter to check in on them regularly. While it may be easier on the wallet, it isn’t easy on the cat. Even the pickiest and shyest cat likes to know someone will be there to provide food, fresh water and a clean litter box on a regular basis. They need a sense of security to keep them stress free even if they seem independent.
As a Professional Pet Sitter, we require a minimum of once/day 30 minute visits for our cat clients. We do not accept every-other day assignments. Why not?
3 Reasons we MUST visit a cat at least once a day:
Trapped cat: on more than one occasion when visiting a cat for the first visit, we have discovered a cat trapped – inside a cupboard, inside a closet, inside a bedroom. Pet owners may be in a hurry when leaving for vacation or a business trip and sometimes don’t do a visual check for their cats. The occasion of the cat being trapped in a cupboard was due to a cleaning crew coming in between our pet sit visits. A crewmember left the cupboard open to get supplies out and left the cupboard open. Upon leaving they closed the cupboard, not realizing one of the cats had climbed in and was hiding inside. When our pet sitter arrived later in the day for their visit, they could not find the cat. After an hour in panic-mode we finally found her. Another cat client was left in the Master bedroom closet when the owner left the house. Luckily we had a same day pet sit and when we could not locate this particular cat, we began the search. It took a few pet sitter helpers to locate that cat – hid way in the back of the closet. Scared but safe. We feel that even if you have a shy cat that won’t come out, we want to eyeball or see them before we leave. Just to make sure they aren’t trapped somewhere.
Sick cat: when you have a regular professional pet sitter, who knows your cats and personalities, they can spot when a cat is not acting “like themselves”. Just like a pet parent knows when their baby isn’t feeling well. Over the Christmas holidays, we cared for a cat that is very friendly, outgoing, and social. So when our pet sitter visited the cat, and could not locate him, she became concerned. She found him in the owner’s closet. Not trapped, but not acting like his normal happy self. He wouldn’t eat, when in the past he was the first to the wet food dish she set out. We returned later in the day and the cat was still not himself. So we contacted the owner and the vet. We were able to get the cat to the vet right before the Holiday closure and he was given antibiotic shots. He had come down with a virus. The next day he was so much better. Ironically, 2 days later, his kitty sibling contracted the same virus. We knew the signs and were able to get her immediately into the vet. Given the holiday schedules, we were fortunate we could time the visits such that we were able to get them in before the Vet closed shop for the holidays. We have encountered other sick cats. When we visit every day, we are able to see if there are signs they are deficating ok – urine and waste in the litter box. If we see no urine, it is an indication of a serious health issue and the cat needs to see the vet immediately. Same with a cat who is “blocked up”. A simple phone call to the vet can determine if the situation warrants keeping an eye on the cat or bringing them right in.
Broken Air Conditioning or heating systems: Living in the desert, we instantly feel when our Air Con systems are on the fritz. Homes can easily turn into ovens without the proper ventilation. One of the things our pet sitters check each visit is the comfort of the home for the pet. If it is very hot inside the home, we check thermostats to see if systems are running. If they are running, but not set low enough to provide comfort for the pet, we will adjust them accordingly, letting the client know we have done so. On a few occasions we have discovered broken Air Conditioning systems alerting the home owner of the issue so they can have workers at the home ASAP. We will even make ourselves available if we need to be present to get the system fixed prior to the client’s return.