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The how to manage this for an older cat


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#1 Mishu

Posted 04 August 2019 - 01:16 PM

We have an older cat-she’s 17-and she has recently lost her sight. Vet confirmed she’s in otherwise good health for her age. But she is now adjusting to being blind-bumping into furniture & is a bit more clingy, wanting to be held more. She’s indoors with her food, water etc in the laundry, so she knows where to go for this. Vet said as long as there aren’t any big changes to the layout of the house, she’ll adjust.

DH and I we talking last night about our kitchen renovation. It will be a big one and we’re trying to work out how to manage things for her. She is skittish around strangers and we are worried the noise, people etc will scare her. And she can’t see to find a safe hiding place if she needs it. Even if we keep her upstairs in our bedroom, she won’t be able to get to her food, water, kitty litter and the laundry will be on the other side of the reno’s.

We can only think that putting her into cat boarding is the best way to manage this. But I feel bad doing that for the few weeks (possibly up to 6?) that the Reno will take. She’s been to cat boarding a few rimes now but give her eyesight problems, I’m worried it may stress her.

Does anyone have any other suggestions of what we could do that I haven’t thought of?

Once the kitchen is done, it will be same orientation, so no huge changes for her. I just feel bad thinking about putting her in boarding when she’s so clingy at the moment.

#2 smilinggirl

Posted 04 August 2019 - 01:49 PM

Are you able to put her food, water, kitty litter, bed etc in your bedroom and shut the door? At least then she may feel secure. I wouldn't put her into boarding as I think it could be too stressful and it is a long time. At least in your bedroom she can still be with you.

#3 born.a.girl

Posted 04 August 2019 - 01:52 PM

In your shoes I'd be having everything she needs replicated in your room while she's in there.  I think that would be less disorientating for her than boarding.

If it's only while the tradies are there during the day then at least you won't be driven out of bed by the kitty litter use, as my daughter sometimes is in her bedroom.


I think I'd also be trying to get her used to loud noises while she's feeling secure with you, so that it's not a sudden thing for her.

Amazing effort getting her to 17.

Edited by born.a.girl, 04 August 2019 - 01:55 PM.


#4 Lunafreya

Posted 04 August 2019 - 01:59 PM

Yeah, I’d keep her confined. It would be the best thing.

#5 alfoil hat

Posted 04 August 2019 - 02:01 PM

I think I’d shift all her gear into the bedroom for as much time as you have before the renos- months if you can. I’d think the bedroom would be preferable to boarding, even without the stress of a cattery you still have the problem that she won’t know where her food/water/litter is there so it’s really not any better.

#6 BornToLove

Posted 04 August 2019 - 04:26 PM

I agree with confining the cat to the bedroom when work is in progress. Keep a second set of her things in the bedroom so that when she is out, she can go to where she knows.

Also, consider getting a feliway defuser. We use one when we go away (we have a house sitter but the cats are still stressed) and it really helps calm our two furry guys.

#7 Mishu

Posted 04 August 2019 - 05:21 PM

I'll have to see if we could confine her to our bedroom. Unfortunately we don't have a door on our room- it was built as a parent's retreat (it's the only room upstairs) so the stairs lead directly to our room. I don't know why the previous owners built it that way (the lounge room is directly beneath. Yep, privacy can be a challenge :huh: )

It might be hard to keep her up there - I'll have to talk to DH to see if can come up with any ideas.

Thank you all!

#8 Ellie bean

Posted 04 August 2019 - 05:22 PM

^^baby gate might work?

#9 born.a.girl

Posted 04 August 2019 - 05:23 PM

View PostEllie bean, on 04 August 2019 - 05:22 PM, said:

^^baby gate might work?


Most baby gates allow cats to escape to safety from the two year old terrorist!

#10 Ellie bean

Posted 04 August 2019 - 05:31 PM

View Postborn.a.girl, on 04 August 2019 - 05:23 PM, said:




Most baby gates allow cats to escape to safety from the two year old terrorist!
Ah ok, sorry! I only have dogs so I hadn’t realised

#11 fols

Posted 04 August 2019 - 05:34 PM

Would she cope being confined to a dog crate? A larger dog crate would allow bedding, litter tray and food bowls to be set up but keep her safe as required. It would not be dissimilar to many cat boarding setups. You could then let her out when you can supervise her but keep her confined and safe as needed.

#12 ~THE~MAGICIAN~

Posted 04 August 2019 - 05:37 PM

I have an almost-sixteen year old anxious cat who CAN see, and I wouldn't put him in boarding for something like a reno. I would shut him and his things in our bedroom.

#13 BornToLove

Posted 04 August 2019 - 06:11 PM

View Postborn.a.girl, on 04 August 2019 - 05:23 PM, said:




Most baby gates allow cats to escape to safety from the two year old terrorist!

It depends on how wide the slats (and the cat) are. We had to install our gate a little higher than recommend (about 3cm higher) because our one cat couldn’t fit between the slats or jump over the top. DD was bigger so couldn’t get under it, thankfully.

OP, I would look modifying the gate with some fabric or netting. Covering the gate would be enough to keep a blind cat in.

#14 born.a.girl

Posted 04 August 2019 - 06:19 PM

View PostBornToLove, on 04 August 2019 - 06:11 PM, said:

It depends on how wide the slats (and the cat) are. We had to install our gate a little higher than recommend (about 3cm higher) because our one cat couldn’t fit between the slats or jump over the top. DD was bigger so couldn’t get under it, thankfully.

OP, I would look modifying the gate with some fabric or netting. Covering the gate would be enough to keep a blind cat in.

Yeah, this was a few decades ago,no doubt they've changed.

Good idea bout the netting keeping the cat in.

It might actually be possible to temporarily attach netting to the doorway, given the cat may sense the 'way out'.

#15 ghost_cat

Posted 04 August 2019 - 06:49 PM

I'll also suggest a dog crate.  I have a large airline-style dog carrier crate that I lent to a friend when she was moving house and it worked well in that it was large enough that her two cats had room for their bowls, bed etc, but ensured that they couldn't escape through a door that was inadvertently left open.

#16 Lunafreya

Posted 04 August 2019 - 06:51 PM

Some cats can also jump over baby gates.

#17 born.a.girl

Posted 04 August 2019 - 06:53 PM

View PostLunafreya, on 04 August 2019 - 06:51 PM, said:

Some cats can also jump over baby gates.


I'd have thought most cats.  Even our significantly overweight half outdoor cat can jump over our head high side gates.


This one's blind though, so unless she senses it's a way out, probably wouldn't attempt it.   Cats usually like to be able to see where they're going to (try to ) land.

#18 limakilo

Posted 04 August 2019 - 08:36 PM

I would try anything you could to keep her at home, is there any other room?
I wouldn't recommend a cattery for a 17 year old blind cat unless it was a last resort.
Could you put a sliding barn door on your room, for cat and for your future privacy?
https://idealbarndoo...rs/bd001-detail

#19 kadoodle

Posted 04 August 2019 - 08:43 PM

Are there any other rooms (en-suite, study?) to lock her in?

#20 lozoodle

Posted 04 August 2019 - 09:29 PM

I would just set your room up as a temporary sanctuary for her - have all her necessities in there so there's no hassle. Would be much less stressful on all of you than boarding her :)

#21 smilinggirl

Posted 04 August 2019 - 10:06 PM

Our kitten damaged his legs temporarily when he jumped off the kitchen bench and I put him in a large dog crate from Kmart at night. It was big enough to contain his bed  small food and water bowl and a small litter tray. He happily stayed in there and would even drag himself to it when he wanted a break which was awesome for a 14 week old male kitten

#22 Mishu

Posted 05 August 2019 - 07:32 AM

We have an en-suite upstairs where we could leave her food and kitty litter and there’s a little balcony too, in case she wanted to sun herself. I think with a baby gate, it might work. She’s managed through all our other Reno’s but she could see and find a little nook somewhere to hide during the day. And they are pulling up the floor, so I really didn’t want to put her at risk, so upstairs with a baby gate could work.

She’s ok with cat boarding & has been there when we have travelled (the woman who runs it has a great set up) but never as long as this.

Thank you, this has given me a viable option

#23 kadoodle

Posted 05 August 2019 - 06:33 PM

The en-suite sounds perfect. She just needs a Pina Colada on the balcony and she’ll be set.

#24 lozoodle

Posted 06 August 2019 - 08:55 PM

Agree, the ensuite sounds like a great option :)




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