We are going on vacation in October and are having a minor disagreement as to the best way to handle the care of our cat while we're gone. SO thinks we should drop the cat off at his mother's house for the week, I disagree. Am I being unreasonable?
This is the first time we are going on vacation together since we got The Stig (obligatory photo here
) back in 2011. We will be gone for 10 days. I was thinking we would board the little guy with our vet (whom we like very much). SO says we should have his mother take care of the cat.
SO's mother is a great person, and she's had cats all her life. In the past six months, she's had to put down her two elderly cats - one due to advanced kidney disease, the other due to a large cancerous lump in the abdomen. SO's mom is retired and I'm sure she would love to have a kitty romping around the house for a while and she'd take good care of him.
But I have reservations - the primary one being that it seems like it would be disorienting for our cat to abruptly be dropped off at someone else's house, especially one that still smells like other cats. I worry that he might destroy her place by peeing all over it in a territorial frenzy, or scratching up her carpeting.
I also worry about the possibility of him accidentally getting out. The Stig is an indoor cat who lives in an apartment. SO's mom also always had indoor cats, but she lives in a larger house with many more potential exits, and she lives by a very busy road and about 10 years ago one of her cats at the time got out accidentally and was squished by a truck.
My third main worry is that SO's mom is a frequent caretaker of SO's niece and nephew, ages 6 and 7 respectively, due to their parents' work schedules. Sweet kids but very rambunctious and prone to manhandling animals. SO's mother has actively worked to get the kids better about interacting with pets, but her cats were elderly and tended to just hide when the kids came over, avoiding the potential of having their tails pulled or being aggressively dragged around the house. I do not want the kids manhandling my pet - partially because I don't think it's kind to the cat, and also because he hasn't been around kids that often and I worry that if he is manhandled he will scratch or bite them out of fear, and I don't want the kids to get hurt.
I also think that there is more of a risk of the cat getting loose when the kids are over. They are not as vigilant about keeping doors shut. With the late elderly cats over there hiding most of the time the kids were over this wasn't a problem, but The Stig is still a young guy and very curious and I think if given the opportunity he'd sneak out.
And finally, it just seems weird to me to drop our cat off at someone else's house. I'd rather have SO's mom come over every day to play with The Stig, top off his food, check his water fountain, and clean the litter box, than take him over to her house. I'd be totally okay with his mom even staying at our place for the week as a house/cat sitter (we also have plants that will be neglected during our vacation so that might be helpful), though I don't think she would be able to do that because of her obligations to provide childcare for her grandkids.
I honestly would rather board him at the vet than leave him at SO's mom's house.
SO thinks I am being silly. I disagree. But he may have a point. Does he have a point? How do we move forward from this impasse?
Cat-owners of Mefi, how best should we handle cat-care while we are on vacation?