The Cattery day starts for me with breakfasts at 7.30am. Today there were 24 hungry little mouths to feed in 19 pens. Sometimes cats need medicines with their breakfasts.
While the cats are eating I check exactly what needs to be done during the day: which cats are coming in or going out, how quickly any emptying pens are needed for new cats, check email for messages, etc. I do sometimes have help with this bit from one of my own cats.
The first task of the day involves cleaning every occupied pen: sweep up mess, wipe up spillages and anything that has missed the litter tray, plump up the bedding, change if dirty, check water, have a brief chat with the occupant. It’s very easy to be sidetracked into spending a long time with sociable cats. But while cat in Pen 3 is enjoying an extended fuss, cat over in Pen 19 might be sitting in total smelly chaos, so it’s important to move on from pen to pen and get everyone clean as efficiently as possible. Each pen has a sheet to make note that the cat(s) have produced urine and faeces (often called a poo and pee chart). This helps keep track of any health issue like constipation or diarrhea. Litter trays get changed daily, emptied straight from the pen into a rubbish bag on a trolley to keep smell and fly attraction to a minimum.
Some cats are fabulously tidy. Other’s are not! It is shocking how much mess a couple of cats can make in 24 hours.
When all the pens are clean (and that can take the best part of two hours when the Cattery is busy) the rubbish disposed of, the breakfast dishes cleaned, the kitchen tidy and corridors swept, it’s time to groom any cats that need it and have a longer chat with the sociable ones.
Arrivals and Departures
And while all this is going on there may be cats being collected or delivered. Today the first cat went out at 11.15am, and this will be needed for 3pm so must to be cleared, swept, disinfected, wiped clean and set up for the new cat. Next Sunday I have a diary with appointments every half hour from 9am to 12.30 for cats coming or going. Cleaning will be done a bit earlier that day to make sure it’s all completed before the rush starts.
Time out? Maybe not.
Apart from being around for booked appointments my time is my own until supper. Well, apart from taking calls and emails for bookings; putting the dirty fleeces and rugs through the wash; keeping the financial records required of all companies; ordering consumables like food, litter, and cleaning materials. I also have a shop at the Cattery which has just been extended stocking good cat foods and other goods for cat health which needs to be kept up to scratch. And I offer food deliveries locally or by courier which have to be picked, packed and invoiced.
Suppers are at about 6.30pm. Tonight there will be 25 cats for supper, each having something different.
Generally I do a late night check up at dusk or 9pm to make sure everyone is settled for the night.