Most of us hate to leave our feline friends for more than a few hours, but sometimes it's unavoidable. If you've realised that you'll be out of the house for a long period of time and haven't managed to arrange a pet sitter, there are still ways you can make your home as safe and comfortable for your kitty as possible. There's no substitute for actual human love and attention, though, so make sure you don't make a habit of leaving your cat alone for too long.
Invest in an Automatic Feeder
Leaving out all your cat's food for the day isn't ideal. Either your kitty will stuff themselves early in the day and have nothing left for later, or they'll leave food for so long that it starts to spoil. Automatic feeders are the perfect solution.
Wet food feeders usually contain several compartments which can be closed and set to open after a certain amount of time — so one could open after four hours, the other after eight. The food is covered when it's not being eaten, and there's space for an ice pack to keep meals fresh.
Dry food dispensers are even simpler and dispense food as your cat's bowl gets emptier, ensuring they never go hungry while you're away. Use both to give your cat some choice.
Use a Pet Drinking Fountain
It's important to provide fresh, clean water for your cat to drink at all times. Many cats prefer drinking from running water sources, like dripping taps. Investing in a pet drinking fountain is a great way to provide them with a larger amount of water than you'd fit in a bowl. An internal filter ensures the water is kept fresh and clean, and different speed settings allow you to find the flow your cat likes best.
Have a Cat Flap Installed
If your cat is used to having outdoor access, then having pet doors installed is essential. They'll be able to come and go as they please, ensuring they get plenty of exercise and can use the bathroom when they need to. Choose a cat flat that recognises your cat's microchip to ensure you don't get any unwelcome visitors, and set a timer to stop your kitty going out at certain times — for example, rush hour, school closing time or after dark.
Leaving your cat home alone isn't ideal, but you can take steps to keep them as happy and safe as possible.