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What Should You Look for in a Pet Daycare?

Posted October 9th, 2023 by daniel

When you are a pet parent it is up to you to ensure you to ensure your pet is well cared for, has food, is engaged, and stays healthy. And, as a pet lover, you do your part to see that these various forms of care are provided. But sometimes, you have to travel, and you want to be sure your pet is still properly cared for even if you aren’t the one doing it.

Many pet owners will call a friend to take care of their fur baby, but sometimes this is not an option. In other cases, pet parents will hire a pet sitter. This is a great option because it allows your pet(s) to stay in a space they are familiar and get the food, grooming, and care they need. With many years of experience in the field of pet sitting, this is our preferred approach.  However, we recognize that there are times when it might be helpful to take your furry family member to a pet daycare.

If this is your scenario, then we would like to help you determine what pet daycare is best for your pet. Here are some things to keep in mind.

What to Look for in a Pet Daycare

  • Is it clean? Don’t just assume that a pet care facility is going to be well-maintained and clean. If possible, show up at a potential pet daycare without an appointment and take a look around. This will give a look at how things are when they don’t know a guest is touring. If they are hesitant or unwilling to let you look around, it may not be a good choice.
  • Do they have enough workers? While you can’t expect 1 worker per pet, you should expect there to be enough workers to keep up with what is happening around them. The exact number of workers needed will vary based on how many pets they have, how much space the pets have to roam in, how big or small the pets are, and a variety of other factors. The best thing is to thoroughly check out the space and decide if you and your pet will be comfortable.
  • Is the staff trained? Simply liking cats or dogs is not enough. The staff needs to know how to read pet body language so they can diffuse a situation before it becomes a problem. They should also have some basic knowledge of pet first aid.
  • What services do they offer? You may need to leave your pet overnight. If this happens, knowing you have a place where your pet is already at ease makes it less stressful. You will also want to find out if the daycare offers grooming or keeps your pets’ favorite food.
  • Do they separate the animals? Not just by species, though this is a must for most pet owners. But also, by size of the animal, gender, etc. so that a step is taken to prevent aggressive behavior.
  • What are the requirements for the pets? For instance, do they need to be spayed or neutered? Perhaps, they must be chipped. In most cases, a pet daycare will require your pet to be up to date on their shots. Other places may require you to bring your pets for attest day to determine how your pet interacts with other animals. Again, know what to expect, so you can make the experience a good one.

These are just a few of the things to look for. Other considerations are

  • Does the facility have cameras?
  • How are emergencies handled?
  • What types of toys are available?
  • How many animals comprise a playgroup?

Be a proactive parent. After all, someone has to advocate for your pet. So don’t think of yourself as a bad pet parent if you need to use a pet daycare. Just take your time, do some research, and know that your pet will be fine. Of course, if you want your pet to have even more personalized pet sitting, then talk to us. We can help you find the perfect pet sitter for your fur baby. Give us a call today.

Signs Your Cat Might Be Depressed

Posted May 17th, 2023 by daniel

As a cat parent chances are that you spend a fair amount of time interacting with and taking care of your pet. You notice when their habits change. Consequently, when they seem out of sorts, you try to figure out what is going on. And while they can’t verbally speak to you, your cat does have ways of communication.

While depression is commonly associated with humans, cats can also be depressed. And, they have a variety of ways the express it.

How Do You Know if Your Cat is Depressed?

  • Become more aggressive or fearful -If your usually friendly and outgoing cat starts becoming skittish and hissing at everyone or everything they encounter, it could be that they need some extra TLC. Other signals may be ears held back, tail tucked, and hair standing on end. They may also manifest sadness by becoming clingy and losing interest in activities.
  • Breaking housetraining rules – Has your litterbox-trained cat started peeing in the wrong places? This might be a sign of depression. For cats, the smell of their urine brings comfort, so peeing beyond the litterbox is a way of marking safe zones.
  • Sleep changes- Just as with humans who are depressed, a depressed cat may sleep even more than usual. Keep in mind most cats sleep between 12-16 hours a day. If your cat is sleeping more than normal or perhaps sleeping in a different place-especially one that is tucked away from everything- it could be that something is bothering them.
  • No appetite – A change in their eating habits such as no longer eating food they usually like, not eating at all, or even eating more than usual can also indicate depression. Consider trying a new food item to see if it gets a reaction of any kind. But if the problem persists a talk with your vet is recommended.
  • Vocalization- No your cat can’t doesn’t talk, but they do purr. A cat who is depressed may purr more often than normal, or conversely, purr less if they are usually vocal. Or, instead of purring loudly it may become softer, and vice versa.
  • Grooming- Cats are well-known for their grooming habits. However, a sign of depression is when your cat either becomes excessive about their grooming or simply seems to quit grooming. Over-grooming can lead to bald patches in their fur, while under-grooming will result in matted unkempt fur.

What Can You Do if Your Cat Appears Depressed?

If you have noticed any of these symptoms, there are several actions you can take.

  1. Determine any recent changes. Did You get a new pet? Have you moved to a new home? Maybe someone has left home (i.e., a child going off to college). Have your work hours changed? Any of these changes can affect a cat’s demeanor. Try not to change too many things at once, so the differences are more subtle.
  2. Encourage engagement. Try different play activities, pick up a new toy, and be intentional about playing with your cat. Studies show that cats who get more engagement are less likely to be depressed.
  3. Natural remedies – implement natural solutions like l-theanine and l-tryptophan which contain serotonin. Known as a ‘feel-good” supplement, it can help your cat feel happy.
  4. Schedule a vet appointment. Be sure that are no underlying issues such as sickness or injury. Your vet can do a thorough examination to be certain your cat Is healthy. If a clean bill of health is the result, they can prescribe medication for depression.

Knowing your cat and how they respond to situations is part of being a cat parent. If there’s a change, it is up to you to take steps to improve the situation. Pay attention, and if you suspect your cat is depressed do your part to help them become a happy furbaby.

Tips for Choosing Your Cat’s Name

Posted February 14th, 2023 by daniel

“What’s in a name? That which we call a rose, by any other word would smell as sweet.” ~Shakespeare

You are the proud parent of a new fur baby. And, like any new baby, this little bundle of energy needs a fitting name. Sure, you can call your new kitten blacky, or fluffy, or Spot (Star Trek, anyone?) but like naming a human baby, you want to give your new addition something unique. It must be a name that fits their personality. But how do you decide on a name that is purr-fect?

How to Choose Your Kitten’s Name

While there are no exact rules you must follow in selecting your kitten’s name, there are some factors that can make it easier.

  • Personality – Is your kitten playful? Perhaps they like morning better than evenings. Do they seem content to sit on a perch and observe? How much do they sleep? Any of these factors can help you determine a name.
  • Looks – No, you can’t judge a cat by its fur, but its coloring or amount of hair can lend itself to the naming. For instance, a cat with a significant amount of fur could easily be name Fluffy, while an orange cat might be dubbed O.J. (for orange juice).
  • Age – Your cat won’t always be a kitten, so you might opt for a name your kitten can grow into. After all, you will be calling for your cat for a long time!
  • Keep it simple – Pets do better with short names, i.e. Those with no more than 2 syllables. This is because long names with several syllables or names that are difficult to pronounce can cause your cat to become confused and never really learn its name.
  • Household names – Don’t choose a cat name that rhymes or sounds like other pet or human names in the household. You want your cat to know they are being called.
  • Look to literature or movies – Books, movies, podcasts, comic books, TV shows, etc. are great resources for pet names. Pick a character whose personality or appearance reminds you of your cat and there you have- your cat’s name!
  • Names that represent a hobby – Look to cook? Perhaps name your white kitten Flour or Sugar. Do a lot of gardening? Then Daisy, Rosey, or Dahlia. Love to go hiking? Then maybe Boots.
  • Be sensible – Naming your cat with a play on words or its appearance is fine but remember that you will be calling your cat by said name in public- be it at the airport, the vet, or your favorite pet supply store. Think about how those around you will receive the name.

If you still need inspiration for your kitten’s name, go online. There are numerous sites with popular pet names. Or you may even want to consult a baby name’s book- after all, there’s no rule that says you can’t give a cat a people name!

So, what will you name your cat? Have a unique pet name? We would love to hear about it. After all, as longtime pet lovers and animal sitters, we have certainly heard our share of pet names!