How to choose a good cattery

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Looking for the perfect cattery? Here are the essential questions you need to ask.

When looking for a new cattery, it's important that you, as the owner, feel happy with your chosen cattery. Here are a few questions to ask a prospective cattery:

Do the cats have individual, heated sleeping accommodation?
Only cats from the same household should be boarded together. Heating will ensure your cat is comfortable whatever the weather.

Are dogs boarded there too?
The sight, smell or noise from dogs in kennels can be very stressful for cats and is best avoided.

Do the cats have an outdoor run?
Some catteries provide indoor accommodation only. Most cats prefer an outdoor run. Outdoor runs also give improved ventilation that prevents the spread of bacteria and viruses within the cattery.

Is there a safety passage?
A safety passage encloses the entrances to each cat's quarters, enabling easy recapture of cats should they be intent on escape.

Can I make an appointment to have a look around?
If the cattery proprietor seems unfriendly or refuses to let you see the premises then go elsewhere.

How much does it cost to stay in a cattery?
Costs can vary considerably. From around £4-£5 per day per cat in the more quiet rural areas to £10-£11 per day per cat (or more!) in busier areas near airports, motorways etc.

Does my cat have to be vaccinated to stay in a cattery?
Yes! Up-to-date vaccinations against upper respiratory tract disease and feline infectious enteritis are vital to minimize any risk of cross infection in the cattery. Read more about cat vaccinations.

My cat is on a prescription diet. Can she still stay in a cattery?
Most catteries will be able to administer a prescription diet to your cat if you provide it. It is advisable to discuss this with the proprietor of the cattery when making a booking. Prescription diets (also known as veterinary or therapeutic diets) can only come from the vet but you can give this to the cattery to feed the cat.

I have four cats - will they be able to stay together?
Four cats need quite a lot of space. If the cattery has a larger family unit available this can be used. Some catteries can open cat flaps between smaller units to let cats use the whole area.

My Persian cat needs to be groomed regularly. Can I expect this sort of care at a cattery?
Persian and longhair cats require a lot of grooming. General grooming as part of the daily regime should be carried out if the cat likes it. Some catteries make a charge for extra grooming. Again, one should discuss with the proprietor when making a booking.

What happens if my cat gets ill during her stay?
A good cattery proprietor will assure you that your cat will be cared for properly while in the cattery. Cats should be monitored regularly and any query about a cat's health should be investigated promptly with either the cat's own vet or the cattery vet, whichever is appropriate. You should be asked to sign an Authorisation for Veterinary Treatment form to give the proprietor permission to gain treatment for your cat if it becomes ill.