Thursday, July 2, 2015

6 Things to consider for your Cat when leaving for the 4th of July weekend

This is a repeat post from 2014, but for those who missed it the first time around, here you go!


The Fourth of July weekend is rapidly approaching!! It is the time for BBQ's featuring
"All-American" favorites such as chargrilled hamburgers and hotdogs, corn-on-the-cob oozing butter from every scrumptious kernel, camping, parades, fireworks and sparklers!! Most cats and dogs are terrified of the sound of fireworks, and sparklers can cause severe burns to cats, dogs and their humans should a renegade ember ignite clothing or fur. Plan to keep everyone far enough away and safe from the evening light show.

It is hard to imagine that once the Fourth Of July approaches summer is already half over, yep, half over (at least as far as the back-to-school ads are concerned).



Many people leave town for a few days to enjoy some fun and sun. Can't take your cat along for the fesitivities? Please don't forget to provide for him in your absence.

Cats are more self-sufficient than dogs and tend to do well on their own (for no more than 3 nights) providing his needs are taken into consideration.


1) Provide plenty of food and water: there are many wonderful automatic feeders on the market (most tend to be 48 hr feeders) that will dispense food automatically either when a timer is set or when the cat taps a pad or lever to dispense the food. There are also commercial "water coolers" that are great for cats that can be filled in advance with plenty of water so he doesn't have to crack open a cold one from the fridge.  I would test the dispensers thoroughly before you leave to be sure they are functioning properly. To give you double peace of mind I would still put out small bowls of kibble and water around the house in the event the dispensers don't function properly while you are gone. To give your cat some entertainment you can even hide treats around the house for him to find in your absence (under pillows, in his bed, on windowsills, etc.) This will provide some fun and put his hunting skills to good use.


2) Call home and let your cat hear your voice

Still have an answering machine? Experts say that calling home and leaving a message for your cat can offer him comfort, the sound of your voice will reassure him. I used to do this with my Angel Bobo,  and have to admit it upset me more because I thought Bobo would be more distressed hearing me and not being able to find me. What do you think? I think another good idea which I have implemented is to leave a radio playing soothing music on or leave your TV on. The voices in the background will offer companionship and comfort for a lonely kitty.


3) Clean the litter box before you leave- Providing a second or third (depending on the number of cats you have) might be a good idea if you have a cat that is fastidious about using a clean litter box. Your cat may be angry with you for leaving and you do not want a dirty litter box to be an excuse for him marking his territory all over your home.




4) Leave windows closed or open just a tiny bit

Never leave your windows wide open in your absence. If you do not have air conditioning leave the windows just slightly open. The sight of a scurrying squirrel or other animal can excite your cat and he can possibly push the screen out while you are gone. Screen falls out, your cat is gone.


5) Think about the temperature in your home- Not using air conditioning when it is warm may be great for you when you are there with the windows open, for your cat, not so much. If you have air turn it on (your cat's comfort is more important than pinching pennies) or leave a fan running in a place that your cat cannot be harmed by the rotating blades.

6) Leave some toys out-But, put away any toys (such as toys that dangle by a string) that require supervision. You don't want your kitty accidentally in danger caused by a toy while you are away.


Your cat should do fine if the above tips are implemented. I have instituted all of them when I had a household that just had a cat and no dog,  and frankly I am much more comfortable with having a trusted friend or family member stop in at least once a day to check on my beloved baby. Be sure they are a bona fide cat lover, someone that truly cares about cats and will actually play with your cat, talk to him, soothe him and care about his well being while you are away, not just someone looking to earn a few extra bucks.

If you are having someone check on your cat be sure to:

Provide the phone number of where you will be along with your cell phone number.

Provide the name, address and phone number of your vet and the clinic you prefer your cat being taken to in (gasp) the event of an unexpected emergency. If you don't have one already, purchase The Petter Planner, this is a great resource to leave out for your pet sitter!



Call your caretaker at least once a day (not 4 and 5 times a day like I tend to do because I am a neurotic kitty mama) to see how things are going and to answer any questions they may have.

Have a list of your cat's favorite hiding spots- spare your caretaker the stress of having to search in a frenzied state for a kitty who they think is missing but is in fact snoozing serenely on the towels in your linen closet.

Now that all of the important things have been done to provide safety and comfort for your cat while you are gone, if you haven't already, GET PACKING and pussyfoot on out of here and have a HAPPY AND SAFE FOURTH OF JULY WEEKEND!!!!!!

53 comments:

  1. Good advice =)
    Listing kitty's favourite hiding spots is not something I had thought of before this article!

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  2. Good advice. We will be leaving for eight days in the fall and I worry about finding a reliable cat-sitter. I think having two people come in, one in the morning and the other in the evening, would be safer (and more expensive) in case one fails in their duties.

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    1. Thanks! Not a bad idea, but I get overly nervous when I go away. I always have someone spend the night now (since we have a cat and a dog). If I had just one cat or a few cats, for a couple of days they are fine with someone just popping in, but if I were gone an extended period of time, I would always have someone sleep over. It is just worth it to me.

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  3. Super good information! Fortunately for ME, I will not be deserted this weekend as my Mom and Dad are having a cookout here at home with ME ME ME! Hope you have a Happy 4th!

    Hugs, Sammy

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  4. Good advice, those are all great tips ! Purrs

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  5. These are good tips, Caren. If I were away for any more than one night, I would definitely have someone checking on my kitties, and I'd drive them insane as I'd call them 10 times a day to see how they are! LOL.

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  6. I absolutely LOVE the idea of leaving messages for your cat. I always have someone check on my pets when I'm away. You never know that one of them gets ill and than it's best that someone can go to the vet immediately.

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    1. but now, since most of us don't have answering machines anymore, they can't hear them! Yes, because we have two we ALWAYS have someone spend the night. If they ever had to take them to the vet I could see myself catching the first plane back though lol

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  7. We're lucky, we always have at least one of our peeps here!

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  8. We are very lucky in that there are so many of us, that the Mom wouldn't be able to find anyone to take care of all of us so she just stays home. And she doesn't mind one bit. So you all have a fantastic fourth of July.

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    1. That's because your Mom is wonderful! You have a fantastic (and safe!) 4th too! xoxo

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  9. Thanks for sharing these great tips! Although, this furbaby momma is a bit of a homebody and prefers an in-home staycation with her kitties!

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    1. Don't tell! I prefer "staycations" too!!! You are welcome and thank you!

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  10. These are great tips Caren! With my previous cat, Fifi, who lived at my parents house, I used to call home and talk to her on the phone. She would sit on my mother's lap with her ear on the phone and sometimes even purred :)

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    1. Thank you and OMG that was too adorable about Fifi!!! Love it!

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  11. These are spot on but I knew they would be. You and I care for our babies better than we care for ourselves. It's as it should be.

    Have a purrfect day Cody. My best to your wonderful mom. ♥♥♥

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    1. you just totally made my day and I thank you! Well, I TRY to take care of them better than I take care of myself, but i don't always succeed. I DO try though! xoxoxo

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  12. Wonderful tips guys!
    ღ husky hugz ღ frum our pack at Love is being owned by a husky!

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  13. We will be stuck at home with the felines, Mom too. Because of cat bro Bert's special diet and ability to eat several days worth of food in one sitting, we have to have a sitter for them if we leave.

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  14. This is where that other comment was supposed to go...MOL!

    Brings back memories of our traveling days of yore, well at least meowmy remembers, MOL!

    Have a fun holiday! Meowmy has to spend this holiday at her work...its her turn.....

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  15. Great tips. Always stressful for me going for a holiday because the cats are left behind even though they have a houseful of servants to care for them.

    Emma and Buster

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  16. All great advice. Mom is a pet sitter so she never leaves us on our own, even for a day or two. She always makes sure, if she is gone, that someone will be here to feed us twice a day.

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  17. We also keep a TV going to kind of even out the signal-to-noise ratio ... that way the firework boomies aren't so noticeable for the 2 of us that can hear! MOL!

    (pee ess: pleez tell your mom thanks for her kind words about her dad's passing. It meant so much!)

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  18. Well this may be a wepeat, but it's gweat infurmation. Mommy never leaves us fur more than a few hours, but on da are occasion she gets caught out and is runnin' late, she will sumtimes call home. Da purrawllem wiff dat is, as soon as we hear hers voinve, weez twyin' to paw da accept button so we can talk to her. MOL

    Luv ya'

    Dezi and Lexi

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  19. Thank cod our peeps aren't leaving us this 4th of July.

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  20. Great advice. This time of year we hear so much about dogs and fireworks but not as much about the kitties and their needs. We'll be home all weekend other than a family party Friday evening! Happy 4th!

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  21. Great tips. My cats are lucky I suffer from anxiety and make Grammie stay with them when I will be gone longer than a half and hour and the most we will go away for is one night.

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  22. Great advice worth repeating. I don't know why I haven't thought about calling and leaving messages. Leaving a note of the cat's favorite hiding places is also a good idea. Brulee scared Grandma Faye terribly while Mom Paula was at BlogPaws because she was hiding.

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    1. thank you!!! Well, there are pros and cons to leaving messages as you can well imagine! Yes, I learned the lesson about the hiding spots when various friends who were watching both my Angel Bobo and Cody couldn't find them!!! I bet Grandma Faye was terrified!

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  23. Those are GREAT tips, Caren & Cody! Things always get crazy when getting ready for a trip and it's easy to overlook things even when we think we've got all our bases covered.

    We're lucky that our summer "vacation" will be WITH the cats! ...which requires a whole checklist unto itself! haha!

    Have a wonderful and safe 4th!
    xoxo

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    1. Thanks so much!!! Oh yes it is easy to overlook things! I would have to refer to some of these myself! MOL!!

      Oh yeah, you guys are gonna be vacationing in the lap of luxury! Can't beat that! You have a happy and safe 4th!!! xoxo

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  24. Great tips!

    Purrs xx
    Athena and Marie

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  25. Pawsome Post Caren and Cody- am sharing a link to it with my readers of "Friday's Friend" Noah!

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    1. Thanks so much my furiends!!!! Have a happy and safe 4th!!

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  26. Some really good advice there. My husband and I are very lucky - when we go away there are plenty of relatives who live nearby who can pop in every day to make sure everything is OK.

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  27. Best blog EVER! EVER!!! I can't stand leaving my baby over 1 day and night. So most times I even ask the sitter for Katie even then. I am neurotic that auto feeders won't work so the advice about that is great! And to leave extra in bowls around the house. And to provide for their comfort when it's hot or cold for pity sakes. I can't imagine leaving an animal alone with heat o=r very cold temps just to save a few bucks.

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    1. oh my!!! Thank you!! Thank you!!!!! I am like you about the auto feeders and that is why I don't own one. Plus, the way Cody is, he would knock it over, tear it apart and get the food THAT way lol! I agree with everything you said and I am exactly the same!

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  28. These are great things to think about. When Mommy goes away in the summer she leaves the air conditioner in the bedroom on a timer. When she went to Blog Paws she did it wrong and it was on the whole time! MOL At least we were cool.

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    1. thank you! Yes, better cool than boiling hot!

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  29. This post makes a really good check list. I'm with Katie Isabella and would rather get a cat sitter than trust the automatic feeder. I've never called my cat when I'm away - I assumed that the sound of my voice coming out of the answering machine would just confuse and distress them.
    Happy Trails!
    Maggie

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    1. Thank you! I totally agree with you about the feeder. I would NEVER do one, in fact, I have turned down opportunities to review them, MANY times, just because I wouldn't use one. I also agree and mentioned above that I think the calling the cat thing could be upsetting too. I used to do it though when I was at work, but it was different because I was returning home the same day.

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  30. Great tips, love the pic of Cody the pen thief!
    Happy belated anniversary, I didn't get a chance to comment when the post came out. Congratulations!

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    1. Thank you!!!! And...thank you so much for the anniversary wishes! That was so sweet! Thank you!

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  31. Hey Cody and your human, Caren,

    Excellent advice and certainly a lot of info for those humans who are going away and leaving kitty behind. Rather different in Britain. Cats are all over the place and they go from catflap to catflap. Almost a cat exchange program, as they help themselves to food and water in other humans' houses.

    A peaceful, pawsitive Fourth of July to all our American human friends and animals.

    Penny's pawtend human,

    Gary :)

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    1. I'm sorry but that was hilarious about them going from "catflap to catflap" lmao!!!!!! Thanks for the good 4th wishes! Sending you love!

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  32. Replies
    1. Thank you so much! Hoping to get on IG later. Usually don't get on there til near 1am (I know, I am strange!) If I don't get on tonight I will try tomorrow! Sending you much love!

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  33. Great post and wonderful tips!

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