Basic care

How Long Can You Leave a Cat Alone?

Olivia Grisham
By Olivia Grisham, Journalist specialized in animal care. Updated: January 1, 2018
How Long Can You Leave a Cat Alone?

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Cats need a lot of love and affection from their owners, because they are social animals. They are much loved for their independence, but this does not mean they can be left alone for a long time. In fact, if you have to be away for a long time and you cannot bring the cat with you, the best thing to do is to ask relatives or friends to take care of the animal.

AnimalWised want to answer this frequently asked question: how long can you leave a cat alone? You must know that the temperament of cats can vary. So, the final answer will be clear after assessing various factors and the characteristics of your four-legged friend.

You may also be interested in: How Long Can Cats Be Left Alone?
  1. What can happen when a cat is home alone?
  2. The age and personality of the cat
  3. Manage the cat litter box in your absence

What can happen when a cat is home alone?

According to many people, cats can stay several days at home alone. However, it is not very advisable to do so because you can run some risks.

Usually, those who leave their cat at home alone for a long time, buy a much larger water bowl than their normal bowl. However it is possible that your cat will not accept this new object and not recognize it as their own; refusing to drink or throwing water on the floor. To avoid this, we recommend you to add 1 to 3 bowls of extra water to be put elsewhere in the house. Do the same with the food bowl and never change it before a prolonged absence.

Another option is to buy a bowl that gives automatic water and food to the cat. If you opt for this object, however, you will need to introduce it into your pet's life a few weeks before your absence. This is to teach the cat how to use it and get used to doing it.

Another situation that can occur in your absence, if your cat likes to hide, is that they may run the risk of being locked in a closet and unable to escape.

For the reasons given, we do not recommend you to leave a cat for more than a day. The ideal would be to ask a friend or relative to go to your house. They can make sure that the cat is well, to feed and play with them and avoid them suffering from separation anxiety.

How Long Can You Leave a Cat Alone? - What can happen when a cat is home alone?

The age and personality of the cat

If you are away from home for more than 2 or 3 days, we want you to consider the following factors to avoid your cat from getting sick or feeling lonely.

  • Young cats that are already used to spending a day without you at home, will have no problem if everything remains as usual, as if it were a normal day. It is part of proper cat training to ensure that they get used to your absence during the day. There are cats, however, who do not want to spend even a minute in the house alone. This depends on several factors but, in particular, by incorrect education. The cat should be accustomed to being alone, initially for a few minutes then passing hours. Especially for young cats, we'll want to leave different toys at home, it is important that they are occupied. Enriching the environment where they live will help them to remain engaged and be distracted from your absence too.
  • Adult cats are the ones that get used to your absence more easily, especially if they were left alone when they were younger. Again, we'll want to use toys to distract them. But, given their average degree of activity, they should receive a visit once a day or every two days.
  • Older cats are probably the ones most in need of assistance and who might need two visits per day. In this case it would be appropriate to ask someone to take care of them full-time or at least visit them several times a day.

The cat's personality is another very important factor to consider. Adapting to their needs is critical to ensure you have a happy cat. There are cats very attached to their owner and others who prefer that a certain routine to be happy, such as receiving a wet food ration is respected.

In severe cases, such as aggressive or territorial cats, you should think about how to manage visits from those who will feed them. The ideal method is to present these people to the cat in the days before your departure so that the animal views them positively.

Manage the cat litter box in your absence

Another aspect you must not overlook is that of cleaning the litter box. When it is very dirty, most cats stop using it. Cats are demanding animals in terms of cleanliness and hygiene. So, one option would be to leave litter boxes in several different places, so that they have a few options to go to the toilet. However, if someone goes to your house every day, you will not need to. If you want to know more about litter training your cat, read our AnimalWised article.

A dirty litter box can lead to other problems, such as the cat, not wanting to dirty other places, therefore holding in their pee. If they do this they are at risk of urinary infections. This or other conditions may also affect a healthy cat who has never had health problems. For emergencies, always leaves the vet's number for the person who will take care of your cat.

If you want to read more articles similar to How long can you leave a cat alone?, please visit our category Basic care .

How Long Can You Leave a Cat Alone? - Manage the cat litter box in your absence

If you want to read similar articles to How Long Can You Leave a Cat Alone?, we recommend you visit our Basic care category.

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How Long Can You Leave a Cat Alone?