Leaving your cat at home while you’re away can be nerve-wracking. You want to make sure that they are safe and comfortable, but you also don’t want to spend all your time worrying about them! In this blog post, we will provide 7 safety and preparation tips that every pet parent needs to know before leaving their cat alone overnight.
Yes, you can leave your cat home alone for a night. Most cats will be fine when left alone overnight. However, the tips below will ensure your kitty is safe and comfortable while you’re away.
- Make Sure Your Cat Has Fresh Food and Water
- Secure the Food Cupboards and Other Hazards
- Tuck the Adjuster Strings On Blinds
- Pick Up Any String Toys or Elastics
- Check That the Litter Box is Clean
- Leave A Light or TV On
We’ll cover the tips in more detail below. But first, let’s take a look at what age you can leave a cat alone for the night.
At What Age Can You Leave A Cat Alone Overnight?
Before we get into the tips, young kittens younger than four months old, are NOT old enough to be left alone for more than four hours. Kittens six months of age can be left alone for up to eight hours. Cats over the age of one year should handle being alone overnight just fine.
If you have a senior cat, it’s best to have them checked by a vet before they are left overnight. If your senior cat is sick or has trouble moving around, it will be best to not leave them alone for long periods of time and you may want to have them boarded or take them with you when traveling.
Tips for Leaving Your Cat Alone Overnight
#1 Make Sure Your Cat Has Fresh Food and Water
Whenever you leave your cat alone, whether night or day, ensure they have fresh water and clean food. Always leave enough food and water out in case they get hungry while you’re away.
If you have a fountain, make sure it has plenty of water so it doesn’t run out. You may want to consider leaving some spare bowls of food and water, especially, if your cat has a habit of knocking over their bowls.
Don’t overfeed them before leaving, just make sure their bowls are full!
Leave treats out in different places of the house such as; your bed, on the cat tree, on the couch, etc. This will keep your cat busy looking for treats, instead of missing you.
#2 Secure The Food Cupboards and Other Hazards
Cats are curious creatures and spend most of the night climbing counters, investigating cupboards, and playing with dangling cords. Before leaving your cat at home overnight, make sure to secure any cabinets or hazards that they may be tempted to explore while you’re away.
Install child-proof locks on cabinets, move hazardous items out of reach, and tuck in cords so they can’t be played with. Ensure all food is locked away, so your cat doesn’t get into anything that could make them sick.
Lock plants or flowers away in a separate room, as they can be poisonous to cats.
If you have any other pets in the home, make sure their food and water dishes are inaccessible to your cat.
#3 Tuck The Adjuster Strings on Blinds and Other
Cats are notorious for playing with blinds, curtain drawstrings, and anything else that dangles. If you don’t want your cat wrapping themselves up in cords overnight or worse getting them caught on something sharp and hurting themselves!
Before leaving for the night make sure all of these objects are tucked away safely so they can’t be played with while you’re gone.
It’s also a good idea to lock the doors and windows, so your cat doesn’t escape if they figure out how to open them.
If there are any other hazards in the home that you think would tempt your kitty while you’re away overnight, it’s better safe than sorry! Secure these items before leaving for the night.
#4 Pick Up Any String Toys or Elastics
Put away all cat toys that have strings or elastics. Check the bathroom and your bedroom and pick up any hair elastics that might be laying around. If you want to leave something out that smells like you, consider leaving some recently worn clothing lying on the bed.
This will give your kitty something to snuggle with and will help comfort them while you’re away.
If your cat is used to playing with toys at night, consider some safer alternatives like plush or rubber toys. Make sure the toys are not too small that can pose a choking hazard.
#5 Ensure The Litter Box Is Clean
Clean the litter box before leaving for the night. Your cat will appreciate having a clean space to use the bathroom in, and you won’t have to worry about coming home to a mess.
Make sure your toilet lid is closed and any other water surfaces are inaccessible to your cat. Some cats love playing in the water, so it’s important to make sure they can’t get into any trouble while you’re away.
#7 Leave A Light, TV, or Radio On
If this is your first time leaving your cat alone for the night, consider leaving a light, radio, or TV on. The sound of people talking over the television or singing on the radio can calm your cat and help them feel less lonely.
It may sound strange, but cats are social animals and like having companionship! If they hear other people in the house while you’re gone it will help them to relax and make sure they don’t get into any trouble while you’re away.
If your cat is used to sleeping in a certain room of the house, consider putting a warm blanket in their bed and leaving the light on. This will make them feel more comfortable at night while you’re away.
It’s always better to be cautious when it comes to your pet’s safety! If you have any concerns about leaving your cat alone overnight, contact your vet or local animal shelter for advice on how to make sure your cat is safe and comfortable while you’re away.
If possible, try leaving them with a friend or family member who can check in on them throughout the night and give them some love while you’re gone!
Cats can be left alone for a night, as long as you’ve taken precautionary steps to ensure their safety. That said, if you’re planning on staying away longer, it might be better to find a friend or family member to check in on your cat.