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Cat sitter advice needed

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Hi, me and my wife are thinking of getting us our first cat and we are almost set on a cute little kitten we saw at a shelter. Trouble is, we are the traveling type and we take 2-3 weeks of vacations once a year. I am not sure where i can leave the cat when we go, because pet sitters take like 25-30$ a day which comes almost quarter of our vacation budget .Also she's not very comfortable in leaving the house to strangers so pet sitters are almost out. It's made me think if we are ok to own a cat? please advice
post #2 of 17

Do you take the 2-3 weeks all at once? or is it spread out over a period of time? you may want to consider boarding your kitty with your vet, i know that some vets only charge way less than $25-30... my vet charges $16/day.
post #3 of 17
If you condition the kitten or young cat to traveling in a car, why not just take the cat with you on vacations? My show cats loved going to different places and exploring hotel rooms, etc.

Charlie hated car riding for a long time; but now he's used to it and enjoys the trip. He jumps in the carrier as soon as its upstairs for a show
post #4 of 17
Thread Starter 
thanks for the replies.Well, we take the vacations all in one go and it's international,involves 18-21 hours of flight,and involves visiting a lot of places so traveling with kitty is quite difficult. I didn't know vets do that. Will have to find out, since this is our first pet we don't know any vets. By the way so cats suffer separation anxiety?
post #5 of 17
Cats are territorial and they don't like change - and, they don't really understand that mommy and daddy will come back.

I adopted my cats (my first pets) two years ago - I strongly advise you to interview vets now, before you adopt, to find one you're comfortable with (besides, ideally you'll go right from the shelter to the vet for your baby's first check-up). A lot of vets do have boarding services - mine's like $12-15 per day - and they may also be able to suggest a cat sitter who'll come to the house once or twice a day, opposed to a live-in sitter - again, probably $12-15 dollars per day (I'm near metro Chicago - so not so cheap around here - your mileage may vary).

Also, there are a lot of insured, bonded pet sitters who do this for a living - they go to the various homes, turn the lights on and off, bring in the mail, and keep a diary of your pets' behavior, etc. Ideally, it's nice to leave the cats in place and have someone come over.

I commend you for thinking this out early - adopting is a long-term commitment to your cat's health and care, and bless you for considering what you'll do. Believe me, it may seem like a pain now, but once you cuddle up with your kitty, it'll be worth all the research and extra expense.
post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 
wow, thanks a bunch for that , i didn't think i would get much help. Honestly, i almost picked up the kitten day before, just wanted to think a bit more. If i can get a sitter for 15 bucks . I am near Manhattan so i don't have much hopes but i am going to talk to the shelter and see if they have any recommendation. I really wish i find one, been wanting a cat for so long. Am already doing a cheeky thing cus my apartment complex has a no pet policy
post #7 of 17
That's why you condition a future show cat to car riding. Mine never gave me trouble - they actually enjoyed new places
post #8 of 17
do you have any friends that would be willing to house sit/cat sit while you are away. Or a responsible local teenager who might do it for cheaper, really all kitty needs is someone to feed them and clean their litter, you can even probably condition your cat so if someone comes everyother day (although daily is ideal) they'll be fine,

I leave mine overnight sometimes without anyone coming. If I'm gone two nights I always have someone stop in, but a neighbour does it for free. Gives them food and cleans their litter and leaves enough food for an entire day.

When I was a kid I used to get paid to take neighbours dogs out and feed them twice a day and I was much cheaper then boarding. Now when my parents go away they have friends who stay in the house and look after the dog for free..........you never know if you don't ask, lot's of people are happy to do it.
post #9 of 17
Thread Starter 
Well, the thing is we just moved to a new neighborhood so we don't know anybody, but i hope to find someone, till then i have decided (with a heavy heart) not to get that little furball. I just don't think we would be able to find someone affordable,all of them seem to charge 30 or more. Maybe when i know a few more people
post #10 of 17
As soon as you do make some animal-loving friends, you will be fine to get a kitten! We have three kittens and we travel a lot as well (I am American, the husband is British and we live in Ireland - and that's not even going into the trips we actually take for vacations!). I have two different couples that help me out with my kittens (one has cats, the other is getting ready to get a cat). They pop in once a day, refill food/water and clean out the litter boxes. If the cats are up for it, they will play with them. It's great, as I do little errands for them when necessary as well when they are away (check mail, water plants, etc).

We have a cheap boarding option near us as well if necessary, but so far we haven't had to use them. It is great you being very considerate about this, though. You do have to factor pets into all aspects of your life, but you can do all the travel and stuff you want to do - on a budget- and with pets.
post #11 of 17
I am going to be honest with you. Don't get a cat. I pay $32 a day for my cat sitter and I don't live in Manhatten. Also, your building has a no pet policy....I assume you won't move if the cat is found out ?(and it will be)

Someday you will be able to have one. It seems not to be the right time.

I'm going on a cruise for 9 days and am paying close to $300 for her services. It's worth it to me, I knew the expense when I got the cats. But it's not feasible for most people.

It's just something that has to be done. It's a fallacy to think that cats don't need as much care as a dog. They need daily interaction with their people if thats what they are used to.

The up side is that she watches over the house and collects the mail etc.
post #12 of 17
It's just something that has to be done. It's a fallacy to think that cats don't need as much care as a dog. They need daily interaction with their people if thats what they are used to.
It totally depends on the cat. I understand what you are saying - some cats are going to be so much more dependent on humans and will really suffer if you go away, but I have never had that problem. My husband's family had cats his entire life and when they went away on vacation, they got in a family friend or a neighbor to stop by and feed and play with the cats. I think having more than one helps as well as they can entertain each other.

We have three kittens. We went away for a few days to a wedding. A friend stopped by, fed, cleaned and played for about 30 minutes a day. No cost to us, but we help her out if necessary (I remember you saying you didn't know anyone - obviously this only works when the time comes that you do know people!).

As for the no pet policy - how stringent is it? I am just saying this because I have a lot of friends in NYC with pets in no pet buildings. One friend told me that whilst her building was technically no pets, they had some weird loophole where if you had the pet for 6 months, it was fine. I don't fully understand why such a rule would exist, but it might be worth checking out exactly how vigilant they are! My husband's cousin lives in a no pet building, and we house sat for her for a week (she has a cat). Anyway, I befriended one of the dogs on her floor while we were there, and one day the owner asked me if I could walk her dog (she had to pick up her kid from school early). Being the rule-follower that I am (and aware of the no pet policy) I was worried I would be stopped and questioned. I nearly had a heart attack when the doorman stopped me, but all he wanted to do was pet the dog and give her a few treats (he had a pocketful). No pets, eh?

Obviously every one has their opinions about all this and it is up to the poster to decide what is best for them. If you want to get a cat you can make it work - lots of people do. But, if you really feel it is not the right time, then it is not the right time!
post #13 of 17
I think it is not time for you to get a pet. If your apartment has a no pet policy then, PLEASE, do not get a pet.

Shelters are full of pets that were "snuck in" and then found out. Please, please, please do not get a pet right now.
post #14 of 17
Thread Starter 
The no pet policy is not really a big concern, the leasing lady told me she had 2 cats herself, so i don't think they are big on that.I am pretty sure i want a cat, but like everyone says, i gotta know a few people willing to sit before i get one, pet sitter and vets too are out of the budget. Honestly, 200 a week to play with a little kitty for half an hour and i thought gas was expensive .
post #15 of 17
I'm sorry this is not the right time for you to get a cat, but thank you for thinking ahead, and thinking of the kitty and its needs, especially medical attention.
post #16 of 17
Once you are in a pet friendly building, I suggest you get two kitties at the same time, so when you take your long vacation, they will have companions. Also, once you have the kitties, I doubt you will want to leave for more than a week at a time. You will miss them and worry about them too much. I am in the suburbs of phila. and my sitter is 15 a day, pills the cat, feeds and scoops, and leaves a little diary of what they did when she was there. worth every penny. Oh and she is licensed and bonded, but....most recently, a friend from work and I take care of each others animals. Fortunately for me, Fang is easy to pill, so she does that and all the rest. She takes care of my three, and I take care of her 4 cats, and have to feed the fish and the gecko. Feeding the gecko is gross, I have to dump live crickets into the cage, while fighting off the two kittens chasing the crickets.
post #17 of 17
Do you have any family that could check in on the cat now and then? When I was at home with my parents we had my cat Metallica and would leave for two weeks ever summer. We had one of our family friends check in twice a week. If you know someone, kids, neighbors, that you trust you could pay them $10 a week for checking on your pets twice a week.
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