Posted by: phynbarr | June 12, 2011

The perfect cattery

The ideal cat house?

I want to start and run a boarding cattery and I want it to be the best. Look at it from the cat’s point of view. You normally spend your time at home surrounded by loved ones, carpets and curtains, chairs and beds and all of a sudden you are uprooted from all that’s familiar and sent ot stay in a concrete run visibe from all sides and with very little comfort. Normally. I know there are exceptions to the rule but normally.

Now this is not to imply that owners / managers / runners of the usual boarding cattery are doing anything wrong. They are doing what is usual. I want to do what is best for the cat.

So first of all I would like to replicate – as much as possible the usual surroundings of home. There would be (cleanable) carpet, a nice easy chair (covered in a washable fleece), not quite curtains, but a proper wall so that a cat doesn’t feel overlooked all the time.

There would be boxes and hidey holes that cats could hide in whilst they get used to their environs (moveable to different heights to accommodate those cats who are less nimble). If possible there would be walkways at height so occupants and walk around whilst remaining off the floor.

There would be cat scratching posts – you know the big ones – so that cats could climb and sharpen their claws.

There would be inside and outside and outside would include different mediums on the floor. I have discovered that my cats like a bed of sand to roll in – like a dust bath – and I’ve always though it would be good to have running water, like a stream running through (health considerations to be taken into account)

Also outside, there would be plenty for a cat to watch – wildlife at least in the form of bird tables and trees and shrubs. Would people coming and going be stressful?

IT would be good for there to be a view from the inside pen as well. Not only for carers to look in, but for the cat(s) to watch an aviary or aquarium or even guinea pigs, hamsters or mice happily playing in their preferred environment.

I would like to explore if it would be possible for the cat to be let out to play or for the construction to allow cats to wander round individual walkways above human head height. After all, we would be taking them from what would hopefully be quite a stimulating environment to somewhere where they might just get to watch their claws grow.

So have I covered everything?
• The room(s) would be warm inside, there could be radio piped if it was thought to be beneficial to the cats.
• Running water would be provided either in an individual water fountain or from a stream.
• Food would be placed in different places so that they a) have to hunt for it and b) can’t demolish it too quickly and sick it back up again (or is it only mine who do that?) and c) it would be away from the water AND the litter tray
• Entertainment – things to watch
• Privacy
• Access to outside
• Litter tray would have the medium they are familiar with.
• A variety of games and entertainment from “Da Bird” to finding treats
• And the most important last – LOTS of cuddles, grooming and attention so that your friend doesn’t feel completely abandoned.

Bear in mind that all this would be varied depending on the style of cat that was coming to stay. If your companion is an aloof loner, the last thing (s)he is going ot appreciate is someone waving a feather stick at them

In my trawls round the internet to explore what is though the best way to board cats I have come across the following sites

http://www.moderncat.net/2008/10/08/unbelievable-cat-friendly-house-design-from-japan/

http://calicocattery.com/boarding.aspx

http://pics.livejournal.com/caboodleranch/gallery/00045az5

http://catplay-stations.com/outdoor_fp.htm

http://www.oakdalecattery.co.uk/

And now it’s over to you to add your comments. Would you leave your cat in a cattery such as I’ve described?

Have you found the perfect place to leave your friendly feline at while you go on holiday and if so, what makes it so good?

A final thought, I heard somewhere recently that cats like to tunnel. Have you heard that too? Is it true (certainly my ones’s favourite toy of the moment is a crinkly tunnel tube). And if so, how to incorporate into my plans.

How can you improve on my initial ideas?

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