General Cat Care and Health

Dear Senior Cat – a Poem by Deborah Barnes

November is Adopt a Senior Pet month, and with five of our seven cats officially seniors, it’s hard not to dwell on their age. International Cat Care states, “Feline ages and life stages have been redefined. Cats are elderly once they reach 11 years, with senior cats defined as those aged between 11 and 14 and geriatric cats 15 years and upwards.”

That means my Zoey, who was just a tiny kitten a mere fraction of a minute ago in my mind, is now geriatric at 15 years of age. It’s tough to wrap my head around the notion, as she looks and acts as young as ever. Age is but a number to her. Her most recent checkup came back with great results, and she’s as spry, alert, and overly vocal as ever. The only thing the vet recommended was some B-12 to help support her metabolic processes, and thankfully, she happily eats her Cobalequin chewable tablets with no fuss. Her eyes remain bright and clear, and her fur is as soft as silk, too, with no grooming issues. Read more

Some Facts on Ginger Fur for Ginger Cat Appreciation Day!

September 1 is Ginger Cat Appreciation Day!

Jazmine, our ginger diva extraordinaire!

As guardian to a ginger cat who stole my heart the moment I laid eyes on her in 2014, my sweet Jazmine, I find it quite pleasing a day was created to honor her, along with other kitties in fur colors ranging from cantaloupe to pumpkin, copper, gingersnap, marmalade, rust, paprika, papaya, carrot, apricot, honey, amber, mango, poppy, sand, flame and more. Gingers can be one color; they can have patterns with swirls, stripes, blotches, and spots, and many are adorned with a bib and mittens, usually white in color. However, every day is Ginger Cat Appreciation Day* in our house. Or perhaps more aptly, Ginger Cat Worship Day, but I figured since there is an official day, why not share some fun facts about how all those ranges of ginger fur patterns and colors come to be?

First, because ginger cats are not a breed, their coloring is based on a specific coat marking known as the tabby pattern (a pattern common to cats of all colors, not just gingers). There are four primary tabby pattern classifications, and although there are many variations, none is solid orange. They are mackerel, classic, ticked, and spotted. A fifth pattern, the patched tabby, is formed by any of the four basic patterns when part of a patched pattern is a calico or tortoiseshell cat with patches of tabby coat. These cats are known as “torbies” if they have tabby and tortoiseshell colors and “tabicos” or “calibies” for a mix of tabby and calico patterns. Regardless of the pattern, tabby cats’ most distinctive feature in common is the “M” on their foreheads.

The pigment responsible for an orange cat’s color (and all cat colors) depends on melanin and its components: eumelanin and pheomelanin. The combination of these two, in greater or lesser ratios, defines the intensity. Eumelanin produces brown and black, and pheomelanin produces red and yellow. The mix is determined by the amount of melanin transferred genetically by the father and the mother to their young when conceived.

Photo via Depositphotos.com

If a kitten inherits the O gene from just one parent because that gene, called the orange pigment gene, is dominant, it will have some orange coloring somewhere, although it might not be an entirely orange coat. Orange coloring can also “mask” other colors, including black, and even light cream-colored cats have the orange gene, but they also have a dilution gene that limits how much red pigment is produced. White and orange cats, a common color variation, owe their white color to the White Spotting gene, which overlays pigmentless areas on top of the tabby orange base. These pigmentless areas cover most of a cat’s body or just the classic bib, mittens, and tail tip.

The tabby pattern is determined by both the agouti gene, which causes each individual hair to have bands of light and heavy pigmentation, and the tabby gene, which denotes the type of tabby pattern, specifically stripes, blotches, or spots of hairs of solid color (solid color being misleading in that when you look closely at a solid-colored cat, you will notice some hairs are a little lighter than others giving a faint striped effect). And even if the signature tabby pattern is not easily visible because the ticking pattern is so delicate or the color contrast is low, it is there. This can be more noticeable on a solid-colored cat sitting in the bright sun, making the faint tabby markings easier to distinguish.

The full name for the gene responsible for the variation in tabby patterns is Transmembrane aminopeptidase Q or Taqpep for short. Domestic cats inherited this gene from their ancestors in the wild, with the purpose of tabby patterning to provide camouflage for the cat when hunting, as it is harder for prey to spot a predator whose markings blend in with the natural surroundings than it is to spot a predator of solid color.

Photo via Depositphotos.com

Mackerel. The mackerel tabby pattern gives narrow, vertical, gently curving stripes that run parallel on the sides of the body. The stripes may be continuous or broken into bars and short segments/spots, especially on the flanks and stomach, and are typically evenly spaced at various angles on the neck and shoulder area, running perpendicular to the cat’s spine and lining his legs and ring his tail, resembling a fish skeleton; hence the term mackerel to describe the pattern. An ‘M’ shape appears on the forehead, along with dark lines from the corners of the eyes, one or more crossing each cheek. Mackerels are the most common among tabbies and are sometimes referred to as “tiger cats” because their stripes resemble that of the big wild cat with stripes, Panthera tigris.

Classic. The classic tabby, also referred to as the blotched or marbled tabby, has the ‘M’ pattern on the forehead and a body marked with elaborate, thick curving bands in a whirled or swirled pattern on each side resembling a bullseye or marble cake, with butterfly-like patterns over the shoulder.

Photo via Depositphotos.com

Photo via Depositphotos.com

Spotted. A spotted tabby has spots all over its sides. They can be large or small, round, oval, or rosettes and sometimes appear to be broken mackerel stripes, which is thought to be the result of a modifier gene that breaks up the mackerel tabby pattern and causes the spotted tabby to look most like the mackerel tabby, including the classic marks on the limbs, tail, and head, and the ‘M’ on the forehead.

Ticked. The ticked tabby cat, sometimes called the agouti tabby, may not at first glance seem to be a tabby, as it does not have the traditional stripes or spots of the mackerel, classic, or spotted tabby. Instead, the striping occurs on each hair within the cat’s coat, alternating light and dark bands as determined by the agouti gene. Many ticked tabbies will display barring or “ghost striping” on the legs and tail and may also show a darker line down the spine. This pattern will also have the standard ‘M’ marking on the forehead.

Photo via Depositphotos.com

Photo via iStock.com

Patched. A fifth pattern is recognized when patches of tabby markings appear on a calico or tortoiseshell cat. They are referred to as caliby and torbie, respectively, and have dark or grayish brown patches and patches of red or orange with a tabby pattern throughout both colors. Patched tabbies can show any of the four distinct tabby patterns above, and the markings are usually more apparent on the legs and head.

Because the tabby pattern is not a breed, there is no particular orange tabby cat per se. However, some breeds have more tendencies toward the orange-red-ginger coloring in one or more variations of the basic tabby patterns, including the Abyssinian, All American Curl, American Bobtail, Arabian Mau, Australian Mist, Bengal, British Shorthair, Chausie, Devon Rex, Egyptian Mau, Exotic Shorthair, Maine Coon, Munchkin, Norwegian Forest Cat, Ocicat, Persian, Savannah, Scottish Fold, Serengeti, Siberian, Singapura, Somali, Toyger, and Turkish Angora, among others, as well as some crosses.

Marvelous. Magical. Magnificent.

Photo via Depositphotos.com

Whatever the tabby term, “M” marks the spot, specifically the forehead. One of the most distinctive markings on a tabby is an “M” above the eyes. It might be hard to see sometimes, but it should be there upon careful examination. The word “tabby” was modified into English in the early 1600s and originated from the translation of the French phrase “striped silk taffeta,” the root of which is tabis, meaning “a rich watered silk.” This was traced to the Middle French atabis (14th century), which stemmed from the Arabic term attabiya. The fabric had a beautiful irregular wavy finish, named after the region of origin, ‘attābī. Medieval Latin adopted the name of the silk as “attabi” before it was translated into French as “tabis.” However, almost 200 years later, the word was used to describe cats with coat patterns resembling silk fabric.

From the ancient Egyptian days came the first legend about this unique marking. Cats were called Mau, most likely a reflection of their conversational sound. The word Mau also translates to seeing or light. Since cats’ eyes appear so luminous at night, it was a natural progression to associate these glorious animals with the moon and their marking to reflect that relationship. The Egyptian Mau is a direct descendant of those ancient Egyptian cats, domesticated as an offspring of the African Wild Cat; it carries the “M” to this day.

Photo via Depositphotos.com

“M” may as well stand for male, too, because the gene that codes for orange fur is on the X chromosome, with about 80% of orange cats male. Females have two Xs, and males have one X and one Y, meaning a female orange cat must inherit two orange genes – one from each parent – whereas a male only needs one, which he gets from his mother. In other words, male orange cats always come from mothers with an orange gene, but female orange cats also require a father with the same gene.

For the eyes, it doesn’t matter which gene code – male or female – all kittens have blue eyes at birth that will usually change to other colors as they grow up. For the ginger’s, they typically become either bright green, golden, copper, or bronze in tone. Another development in many ginger cats that won’t be seen in kittens is freckling (yes, just like human freckles), also known as the lentigo simplex (if just a few freckles), or lentignosis profusa (when many freckles crowd together, merging into more extensive patches of big freckles) and there’s a science behind it.

Typically, these dark spots can appear on a cat’s mouth, nose, inside of their ears, and on the edges of their eyelids. Sometimes, even on the pads of the feet. Any place on the cat with visible skin or mucous membranes and these freckles usually develop as cats age, with more development as the years go by. Middle-aged to older cats are most affected, but lentigo can appear in cats as young as a year old. They are not the result of sun exposure, as is often the case with humans, but due to the pigment-producing cells (hyperpigmentation) called melanocytes having more melanin than the surrounding skin.

Photo via Depositphotos.com

Also, like humans, where freckles are most common for those with red or auburn hair, the same holds for ginger cats. Because lentigo is a genetic condition, it appears linked to the genes that make cats have red or orange colors. Freckles can be found on orange, calico, tortoiseshell, yellow, or flame point cats, and occasionally cream and silver-colored cats.

The freckles are a normal part of aging and generally not cause for alarm. They typically occur first on the lips, their spread is relatively slow, and lentigo is not a form of cancer. The only concern is that lentigo spots can mask melanoma spots, which makes routine veterinary exams critical for monitoring. If you notice a raised black spot on your cat, contact your veterinarian, as raised spots tend to be cancerous more often than flat spots.

So, that’s some ginger/orange/red-headed history for you for Ginger Cat Appreciation Day! Why do I know so much about the subject? Well, it’s twofold. First, because I have a ginger cat of my own that I’m obsessed with (my Jazmine), and secondly, because since 2021, in my “free time,” I’ve been writing a book inspired by the popularity of the day. Titled Orange Crush: Television, Cartoons, Movies, Housecats, and More – The History and Love Affair With the Ginger Cat, it’s been an exhaustive effort in research, including that of the cat’s fur color. I have to fit the project in between my day job, so that’s why it’s taking so long to complete. That, and the fact the whole thing has become far more complicated than I ever could have dreamed. Paws crossed, I’ll be able to launch it by Ginger Cat Appreciation Day next year!

If you’re a ginger cat lover like me and want to follow more of Jazmine and my upcoming book, please follow us at Orange Crush Ginger Cat Love on Facebook and Instagram.

RESOURCES:

Affinity Petcare, A Cat’s Colours

Feline Living, Orange Tabby Cats Facts, Personality And Genetics

The Spruce Pets, All About Tabby Cats

Catster, What It Means to Be a Tabby Cat

Wikipedia, Tabby cat

Pets KB, Tabby Cat Colors and Patterns: a complete guide

Catster, What Exactly Is A Mackerel Tabby Cat?

Canidae, Why Do Tabby Cats Have an “M” on Their Forehead?

Cattitude Daily, Why Do Some Cats Have Freckles On Them?

Catster, 5 Remarkable Facts About Cat Nose Freckles

ABOUT GINGER CAT APPRECIATION DAY:

As taken from National Today, “In 1997, Chris Roy, a software developer turned animal rights activist, found a stray cat near his home. Out of pity, he carried the stray home and decided to foster him for a while. Within weeks, Roy formed a special bond with the feline, giving him a permanent place in his house. The 14-pound tabby filled Roy’s day with warmth and belonging. Doobert, the name he gave to his ginger, lived for 17 years.

In 2014, Doobert’s death rocked the shores of Roy’s life and sucked him into deep corners of uncharted grief. Grappling with the loss of his beloved ginger, Roy dedicated the arrival of September 1 as Ginger Cat Appreciation Day. He also launched Doobert, an online app that connects rescue homes and animal shelters with volunteers worldwide. Since 2014, Doobert has worked with over 1,200 organizations across North America and built a volunteer base of 27,000+ pet lovers and enthusiasts. By dedicating the day in memory of his cat, Roy aims to raise awareness about the divine duty of humans to look after our furry friends.”

Beginner’s Guide to Caring for An Abandoned Neonatal Kitten

My lap on any typical evening.

It was around 8:00 p.m., and Dan and I were finally settled on the couch for the evening. I think I had at least two cats sleeping on me and Dan one or two. Dan’s phone rang – it was a co-worker. He had found an abandoned neonatal kitten (neonatal is a kitten defined as newborn to four weeks old) at the facility where they work, outside in the rain, and he needed help. The mother cat was nowhere to be found, nor were there littermates. It was clear if he didn’t intervene, the kitten would not survive. Read more

Black Cat Holiday Cards for Black Cat Friday!

Our gorgeous rescue, Shadow. Clearly, he makes a great case for supporting Black Cat Friday.

It’s almost here, the day after Thanksgiving that day which officially starts the hectic frenzy of Holiday shopping, aka Black Friday! However, at Zee & Zoey’s we respectfully request the day be called Black Cat Friday because let’s be honest, black cats rule!! In honor of both black cats and the holidays, I’m so excited to share the 2022 holiday greeting cards I created for Zee & Zoey’s Cat Creations shop on Zazzle – both featuring black cats! One is an elegant gold, silver, and black design, highlighting peace and reaching for the stars, and the other is a graphic design I created, incorporating none other than our rescue Shadow, in a stunning traditional red and green Christmas card with poinsettias. And since the poinsettias are fake, I don’t have to worry about Shadow ingesting any of the poisonous-to-cats, leaves!

I hope you enjoy the cards – if you care to place an order, please click on the card and it will take you directly to our Zazzle shop. And make sure you check out the great Black Friday deals Zazzle will be sharing – there is no reason to spend full price for a card because I’m certain there will be lots of discounts available!

Card front – gold, silver, and black design.

Card interior – Peace on Earth and Goodwill to All…

Graphic design in red and green with rescue cat, Shadow, and poinsettias.

Interior – Season Greetings and Wishes for a Joyous New Year!

We also have many other beautiful cat card designs, along with cat T-Shirts, mugs, mouse pads, and more if you’re looking for gifts. You can find everything, here. Please take care everyone and have a blessed Thanksgiving. We are missing our beloved Zee who won’t be with us this year. Despite that, I’ve elected to share one of my favorite Thanksgiving pictures I’ve created of the gang and have kept him in it, because he lives on in spirit.

Keep your cats safe, too – as always, sharing this useful graphic.

Love and peace from Deb and the gang.

Holiday Travel Tips When Leaving Your Cat and Finding a Cat Sitter

As someone who’s been writing articles on cat health, behavior, and wellness for many years, it’s no surprise my emails and social media sites are full of messages about cats. One of the topics I see most is whether cats can be left alone for days at a time while their guardian is away. It’s an important subject regardless of the timeframe or circumstances. But with Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Christmas, and New Year’s rapidly descending on us and people making overnight plans to visit with friends and family, it makes the discussion even more relevant, because the simple answer is, no, your cat should not be left alone, not even for one night.

One of the biggest misconceptions about cats is that they are self-sufficient, independent, and aloof, and therefore if we provide them with sufficient food and water, it’s okay to leave them alone for a few days. This, however, is not the case. Cats are creatures of habit. While you might leave them every day to go to work or school or wherever; they’ve become accustomed to that routine. If you – their loving and reliable caretaker suddenly leave them unattended and disrupt the rhythm, they become susceptible to emotional stress, dangers, and bad habits.

Beth Stultz, president of Pet Sitters International (PSI) concurs. “Not only do cats need fresh food and water, as well as attention and enrichment each day, but it’s also important to remember that both health and home emergencies can occur while pet parents are away. PSI stresses that cats should be visited at least once per day while the pet parent is out of town.”

1. Illnesses, Injuries, and Emergencies Can Happen. Cats, with their keen senses, can easily be spooked. Wind or a knock at the door could result in a mad dash through the house and an injury if your cat breaks something. A razor-sharp shard of glass from a broken vase, for example, could bring a serious cut to a paw. Or a scared cat might jump down from a high place, resulting in a sprain. If you have multiple cats, fights are not uncommon and could result in an eye or ear injury, with one quick swipe from a claw. Or if an illness or medical emergency develops, such as urinary blockage, no one will be around to take the cat to the veterinarian, which could be deadly if not attended to. Consider, too, if you’ve decorated for Christmas with a tree. Your cat could become entangled in the light strands. Some crafty cats can even turn on a water faucet. Just imagine how extensive the damage to your home could be if the water were left running for days, not to mention, possible harm to the cat.
2. Litter Box Issues May Occur. Cats are fastidiously clean and fussy when it comes to their litter box. If the box becomes overly dirty when you’re away, your cat may find another place to pee or poop. Once he/she starts finding new bathroom facilities, such as your carpeting, couch, hardwood floors, or expensive designer rugs, it can be extremely difficult to break the new habit and convince them to begin using the box again.
3. Food and Water Quality Could be Compromised. Many cats have very specific diets. Some eat raw, some canned food, some dry, or a combination, thereof. If you are suddenly changing the diet to conveniently leave out bowls of dry food, your cat may reject the food altogether, get sick from eating it, or suffer from illness if not given the proper diet. And any food left out, regardless of what kind, can attract bugs, or it can become stale or spoiled. Water can become slimy and contaminated, especially for those cats that like to dip their toes in the water. Automatic feeders can help you avoid stale food, but you never know if the feeders will malfunction. Some cats also require daily medications or injections (such as insulin for diabetic cats) and without someone around to administer the dosage, the consequences could be severe.
4. Cats Benefit from Human Interaction. Cats require affection, attention, playtime, and more for good mental health. If left alone for long periods, they can become stressed or anxious without avenues to vent their energy, laps to sit on, stimulating toys to chase, or someone to just meow/chat with. Many cats also require extensive grooming and need the assistance of a human for combing and brushing on a daily basis.

To mitigate any of the above pitfalls and dangers, ideally, you should have someone come to stay in your house while you’re away such as a friend, relative, or a trusted neighbor the cat is familiar with and already knows your lifestyle and routines. If they can’t stay, arrangements should be made for them to drop by at least once a day to check up on the cat, socialize with him, scoop the litter, and provide fresh food, water, and medications if required. If this is not an option, there are numerous reputable, professional pet-sitters who you can hire, some even offering overnight stay services.


You’ve got a cat sitter, but now what? It’s not just a matter of finding someone. It’s also a matter of making everyone as comfortable as possible with the situation, That means, you, your cat, and the cat sitter. If it’s someone you already know, try to have them drop by a few times prior to your trip to give kitty some treats, pats, and playtime, to reinforce a positive bond with them. Let them watch you scoop the litter, feed meals, etc. so that when it’s their turn, they already have a basic idea of what to do and where you keep everything. If this can be done as close to whatever normal schedule you have for your cat, the better. Can’t say it enough, kitty likes routine!

Provide them with emergency phone numbers for the vet, poison control, and where you’ll be staying. Leave written, clear instructions on litter scooping, where to dispose of it, what to feed, how much, and when. Do this even if you verbally told them, or they saw you do it, so there is no confusion or panicking when you are not around. Not to mention, if your cat had his way, he’ll be telling his sitter he’s allowed outside, nonstop treats, and meals six times a day, which clearly is not the case. Inform your vet as well, before you leave, of who will be taking care of your pet, so if anything happens, they won’t be caught off-guard.

If the cat has any medical issues, odd habits, odd hiding places, or anything else important to his health and well-being, share that information. And don’t worry if you think you’re sharing too much, as you can’t assume just because you know something about your cat, that someone else should, too. For example, you know it’s important to put a wand toy with a string away from your curious cat after playing because if left unsupervised, it could be dangerous. But your neighbor might not know that, and you don’t want to risk any accidents, such as your cat ingesting a piece of string, and requiring an emergency trip to the vet. The adage better safe than sorry always applies when it comes to your beloved pet.

If you decide to use a pet sitter for the first time, but are unsure of the process, or are apprehensive about bringing a stranger into your home, do your homework to ease your concerns. Sites such as Pet Sitters International, National Association of Professional Pet Sitters (NAPPS), TrustedHousesitters.com, and Meowtel have already vetted the sitter and offer a coded directory in which you can find sitters based on reviews and references, whether bonded and insured, certifications (such as first-aid or educational training) and more.

Match your needs with those of the pet sitter’s qualifications and take the time to go through a thorough pre-meet interview session (ideally initiated first via a virtual call so you can become familiar with one another “in person”). Follow this step as many times as needed. Once you are comfortable, have the sitter drop by and meet you and your cat before your trip, to become familiar with your home and sitting needs. Have this person offer your cat treats or play a fun game with him to help associate the person with positive things so that when they do come to cat sit, your cat already recognizes their scent and presence as non-threatening.

According to TrustedHousesitters.com, it’s not a matter of questioning “How can you trust a stranger in your home?” but more so what happens as a result of the application process, reviews, ratings, and communications with the sitter. A rapport develops and once you get to know each other, they’re not strangers for long and you actually look forward to meeting them and welcoming them into your home.

Once you know who will be watching your cat, consider their needs as well, especially if they are spending the night. Advise instructions on how to use the TV remote, where the circuit breaker switch is (in case of an unexpected power surge), where they will be sleeping, bathroom supplies, cleaning supplies, etc., and make it easy for them to find cat food, toys, litter supplies, and feeding dishes. They might also be bringing in the mail for you, and taking out the garbage, depending on how long you are gone, so provide information on that, too. And how they will get in and out of the house should be outlined, especially if you have a security system.

If you absolutely must board your cat, try to find an all-cats facility, as all-pet facilities with barking dogs and squawking birds can be highly stressful for cats. And regardless of the circumstances, encourage communication. Have the sitter share daily pictures of your cat to let you know he’s okay, and to ease your concerns about leaving him. You could even consider a kitty cam to keep an eye on your pet, but if that’s the case, please, as a courtesy, inform the sitter, friend, neighbor, etc., they are on camera.


Unless it’s an unexpected emergency, try to bring your suitcase out a few days before you go, so your cat does not negatively associate the luggage with your abrupt departure. Toss in toys or treats, or even let her settle in for a catnap. Anything to give her positive reinforcement. Also, make sure you’ve cat proofed your place. Shut doors to forbidden rooms, unplug anything electrical your cat might be prone to chew, and put anything fragile you think your cat might break, out of harm’s way. And leave behind a little bit of you for her, too, such as a T-shirt you’ve worn but not washed. Put it somewhere she likes to nap to help her feel less stressed while you’re gone.

Turn on the TV or radio so the ambient noise can keep her company. It’s also advisable to take an item of your clothing (such as a sock) and rub it all over your cat. Seal the sock in a plastic bag and when you return, slip on that item so your cat can immediately recognize you. That’s because, with cats, it’s not just about leaving. They can also be stressed upon our return. That phenomenon in which they seem angry when we get home, sometimes hiding, running away, or rebuffing our excitement to see them. In these instances, they’re not angry or getting back at us for leaving. It’s instinctual, stemming from the need they have for structure. Just about the time your cat becomes accustomed to the “new routine” (your absence), you return, and once again kitty’s world is turned upside down.

You don’t notice it, but to your cat, you no longer smell familiar because he hasn’t been able to mark you with his scent while you were away (such as through head butts, rubbing against your legs, or sleeping on your head). Consequently, some cats seem like they are “mad” by hiding or becoming defensive at our advances and that’s why it’s a good idea to “re-scent” yourself with that sock before you walk in the door. Some cats will be fine right away, for others it can take several days. Just be patient and don’t force your cat for attention. Before you know it, all will be back to normal with you and your feline friend.

Joette Suarez White, the owner of Park Cities Pet Sitter (named the National Association of Professional Pet Sitters 2017 Business of the Year), shares these bonus tips to consider when traveling and looking for a pet sitter:

  1. While not always possible, it is strongly suggested to use a professional pet sitter from a reputable company that has employees and not just independent contractors who cannot be trained or told what to do by the agencies they represent. That way, if an emergency comes up and the sitter can’t make it, there will be a trusted and prepared backup sitter to step in.
  2. It’s preferred someone can come on the schedule you recommend for your cat, but that’s not always realistic. Most professional pet care providers are caring for other pets as well, so having a 2-3 hour window of time they can visit ensures they don’t have to rush and gives flexibility for “life happens” moments, like traffic delays, accidents, or whatever may come up.  You want your pet sitter to be calm when they arrive, and so does your cat.
  3. Always plan for the worst, even for a very short trip, because you could easily encounter flight cancellations or a need to extend your stay. Buy and leave extra food, litter, medicine, etc., and even an emergency envelope of cash so your sitter can buy necessities to take care of your cat.
  4. Be sure your cat carrier is visible or easily accessible in case the sitter requires an emergency trip to the vet.
  5. The less stress you, your cat, and your cat sitter have, the better the travel experience will be for all involved!