All about your cat’s stay

Find out what we provide for your cat’s stay, and what you can do to help make the experience perfect from start to finish.

We recommend that you bring your cat in a secure carry cage, and leave the cage with us. Please don’t put food or water in the cage – cats rarely are interested while travelling. Cats sometimes soil while travelling, so newspaper is better on the floor of the cage than blankets.

On check in, if you haven’t already provided this, we will ask you for:

  • Name, phone number and email address and, if you’re going overseas, an emergency contact in NZ
  • Proof of vaccination within the past 12 months
  • Microchip number (usually on a sticker in your vaccination book, but we also have a microchip reader)
  • Any medication, or veterinary diet, labelled and in a sealable bag or container

No payment is necessary until you collect your cat, unless the stay is more than two months.

Please don’t let your cat out of the carry cage on arrival. We will put the cat in its allocated pen after you have left. We leave new cats in their pens for a few hours or overnight before letting them out, so that they know which pen to come back to.

Your cat must be healthy with no signs of fleas, worms, or illness. We prefer longer-haired cats to arrive well-groomed with no significant matting that could cause welfare problems while in our care.

Cats don’t need to have collars and tags on to help us identify them: we will take their photo and read their microchip if they have one so we know who’s who.

Please tell us anything you think we need to know about your cat’s behaviour and preferences: this will help us ensure that they have a really good stay at Seaview Cattery.

Your cat must have a current vaccination against cat ‘flu before it can stay at Seaview Cattery. Booster vaccinations are required annually. Your vet will know what to give your cat. If the cat is completing a full vaccination course (ie kitten being newly vaccinated or an older cat whose vaccination has lapsed and is starting the course again from scratch), the cat cannot board with us until ten days after the final vaccination. Bring the vaccination booklet with you when you arrive, or email us a photo of the most recent vaccination page and front page beforehand.

Please keep your cat’s flea and worm treatments up to date but don’t use topical treatments (ie liquid applied to their neck) within two days of arrival, as we then have to avoid touching your cat so we don’t get too much accumulated skin exposure to the chemicals from many cats.

We can apply flea and worm treatments for you on request, and will add the price to your bill. If we see parasites or fleas on your cat during its stay, we will treat it and may bill you.

We feed IAMS Proactive Health biscuits morning and evening, and a bowl of water is always in each pen. We also provide Whiskas wet food for the evening meal. Kittens and elderly cats get kitten or senior wet food in the morning too, to keep their nutrition levels up. Every cat is offered daily Temptation treats, and there is daily fresh cat mint in the communal area in season.

You can bring a special medical diet for your cat (eg urinary diet, weight management, hairball) and we will always ensure that this is given to the cat. Please label the food with the cat’s name, in a sealable bag or container, and only provide enough for the stay to help us with storage capacity. Please note that IAMs biscuits are available to all cats all day as their pen doors are open: if this is a problem, let us know and we will arrange for your cat to have separate exercise time.

Except during the Christmas/New Year peak period, we can give individual cats preferred food and treats if you bring labelled supplies, in a sealable bag or container and only enough for the stay. We can’t do this during the really busy time at Christmas and New Year as it adds too much time to the feeding routine.

It’s not unusual for some cats not to eat on the first day at the cattery, and this is nothing to worry about – they will normally eat the next day.

Let us know your cat’s individual needs. We’ve seen it all – shy cats, three-legged cats, blind cats, deaf cats, aged cats, angry cats, hissy cats, feral cats, scared cats – and we won’t turn any cats away. We’re very good at helping cats feel comfortable at Seaview Cattery, and we’ve had some amazing successes bringing round cats that at first seemed unmanageable, very shy, and haven’t had great experiences at other catteries. Our staff are always patient and kind, and we go the extra mile to listen to you and learn about your cat’s individual needs.

Shyer cats tend to stay in their pens for a day or so, watching what’s going on. Then they all of a sudden appear, as if nothing has happened. Some do take longer, but it’s nothing to worry about. (This is why we do not recommend short trial periods during which they might not get used to the cattery.)

We can accommodate disabilities by putting a bed on the floor in our larger pens on the same level as the litter tray and feeding bowls.

For ultra-shy cats that simply won’t come out of their pens at all, we say to owners that at the end of the day they are warm, dry, and fed, they’re exercising their preference, and they are safer than left at home for a neighbour to feed.

We provide a comfortable bed with blankets and a synthetic fleece underlay. You don’t need to provide anything, but some owners do like to bring their cat’s bed, blankets, toys, or a T-shirt that they’ve worn, to reassure the cat. Note that they might end up getting washed.

We have some cubby beds that cats can hide away in if they are shy – just ask us for one of these.

We have newly refurbished winter quarters that are fully insulated and heated. We can also provide electric blankets ($2 per day) or hot water bottles.

There’s a large play area with plenty of toys, tunnels and climbing platforms, not to mention the grapevine which provides a climbing network across the entire ceiling.

Payment is on pick up: cash or EFTPOS (no Paywave) or contact us for our bank account details to make a payment online. As a small business we don’t take credit cards. For long stays we bill monthly.

We are happy to give your cat prescribed medication that you give them at home, if you supply it with clear instructions and labelling. There’s a $2 per day charge.

We can’t take diabetic cats than need injections: these are best boarded at a veterinary clinic.

If your cat needs emergency veterinary treatment, we will do our best to contact you first before seeking treatment, but we won’t delay getting help for your cat if it’s urgent, as their welfare is our first priority. If we can’t get hold of you, we will contact your vet or, if out of hours, we’ll take the cat to the emergency vet. There is a $50 fee plus vet charges which will be added to your bill.

If we notice anything about your cat that indicates it might need non-urgent veterinary treatment, we will let you know on pick-up.

We hope this situation never arises, but we will never agree to have a vet put your cat down without your express permission.

Our newly refurbished winter quarters are fully insulated and heated ready for winter 2024. We can also provide electric blankets ($2 per day) or hot water bottles.

Every cat has a comfortable bed with blankets to snuggle under and a synthetic fleece underlay. The sleeping platform is raised up from the floor of the pen.

The non-heated part of the cattery has louvres that are open all the time to let fresh air in. The roof is translucent, and heats up quickly under the sun, which the cats enjoy. The grapevines grow through the louvres, and the leaves provide a shade canopy to cool the cattery in summer. We have large fans to circulate air when it gets really warm.

We don’t provide a grooming service, but we’re happy to brush cats, particularly long haired and older ones every day to keep their coat in good condition, just as you would at home. We have a range of good brushes, but you can provide your own if you prefer.

Please ensure that your cat is not badly matted up when it arrives, as this can become a welfare issue while it is in our care as infections and itches can develop under the mats. Besides anything, it’s uncomfortable for a cat to have to lie on lumps of matted fur, and they can’t easily keep themselves clean and dry.

If your cat has a collar, please ensure that it’s not too tight as this is a safety and comfort risk. If you can easily slip two fingers underneath, it is just right. Don’t have self-releasing collars fastened any tighter, and don’t put them on kittens as they’re not strong enough to break free if caught. If you must put a ruff on your cat, please ensure that it is clean.

Because we have so much space under the grapevines, we love having the cats out of their pens all day from 8 am to 5 pm to play, hang out, or snooze.

We let cats out under supervision first until we are confident that they get on. Catteries are neutral areas, so even if your cat is territorial at home, it may not be at the cattery. If a cat continuously picks fights, or is picked on, we will rearrange their recreation times to avoid this.

At peak times when it’s not possible to have all of the cats out together, we let them out in shifts to ensure they all get play time out of their pens every day.

Being at the cattery is particularly good for kittens to become socialised with older cats in a safe environment. We don’t leave very young kittens out with the others, and we always supervise their play.

Some cats take a couple of days to emerge, and a very few simply prefer not to come out at all: we take care to say hi to them several times during the day and give them treats and strokes in their pens. We always say to worried owners that even if their cat doesn’t come out, at least they are warm, dry, fed and safe, and it is their choice.

Seaview Cattery is particularly well suited for long stays, as it has such a large, open play area and is a lovely environment for cats to spend extended time in. We have had cats stay happily for several months at a time while owners are away on extended holidays, are moving overseas, or can’t have their cats with them for some other reason.

Owners are welcome to visit their cats. Our unscientific opinion is that on balance cats seem to like visits and it doesn’t seem to upset them when their owners leave.

With some more confident and settled cats on longer stays we leave their pen door open all night as well as day so that they have the keys to the city. We think this helps them feel at home, and they seem to enjoy the extra perk of freedom.

If you’re moving your cat overseas we may be able to help with delivery to the airport, or out of hours pick ups by pet transport companies for early or late flights – just ask us.

We don’t recommend having a short trial before a longer stay. This is because it can take a couple of days for a cat to be confident enough to come out of its pen. Some take even longer. If you put the cat through a short trial period, you’re compressing all that stress of car rides and the initial days of orientation into a short time frame and this may actually increase the cat’s reluctance to habituate to a cattery in future. It’s much better to do a longer stay straight off to give the cat the best chance of settling, and then they are more likely to associate future visits to the cattery with having a good experience.

The pens are spacious: they measure 1.2 metres high, 1.2 metres deep and 60 cm wide. There are also larger double pens. Each has a shelf for the bed, and a litter tray sits on the floor underneath the shelf.

The pens have an easy-to-clean surface, and each has a door with wire mesh for good ventilation. Pens in the newly-refurbished winter quarters have polycarbonate transparent doors.

When a cat first arrives, we leave him or her in their pen for several hours or overnight, to recover from the journey while quietly observing the cattery routine, and so that they know which pen to go back to when they are let out to explore.

We recommend using a double pen for very elderly, blind or disabled cats that can’t jump onto a shelf.

We also have the Telephone Box (a full height red phone booth) which can be booked to accommodate two cats comfortably. If unoccupied, the Telephone Box is a popular place for cats to sleep during the day, as it provides a high platform surrounded on three sides by glass.

Please bring your cat into the cattery in a proper carry cage, cat carry-bag or cat transport box for safety. Seaview Road is a 70 kph zone, and the risk of your cat getting a fright and escaping from your arms is just not worth it.

Please make sure your carry cage is in good condition and is well secured so it doesn’t accidentally open.

We prefer it if you can leave the carry cage with us, as it is an important cog in our emergency evacuation procedures – we need to be able to get each cat into a carry cage and safely out of the cattery, should there be an emergency.

We prefer it if you can leave the carry cage with us, as it is an important cog in our emergency evacuation procedures – we need to be able to get each cat into a carry cage and safely out of the cattery, should there be an emergency.

If the carry cage gets soiled underway, we’re happy to clean the cage for you.

Buy a carry cage large enough for the cat to stand up in – a common mistake is to buy a tiny carry cage when you first get a kitten …

“Lose no cats” is our first golden rule: our reputation depends on it. Seaview Cattery is secure and well-maintained to keep all cats safe. We take every cat’s photo, description and microchip number for our database, and we have our own microchip scanner to check that we’re sending the right cat home with the right person.

Please don’t be offended if we double check the microchip before handing a cat over, even if you’re confident it’s yours. Black cats and tabbies in particular can look very alike, and we’ve had instances of owners themselves being unsure, or thinking a cat is theirs when it’s not – and, on one memorable occasion, swearing that the cat isn’t theirs when it actually is (in their defence it was a kitten that had a growth spurt during its two-week stay). The microchip scanner removes doubt once and for all.

In Wellington, cats must be microchipped under a by-law, and Hutt City will follow shortly. Most cats we have are chipped, but don’t worry if yours isn’t – we will accept cats that aren’t microchipped as they are so few in number, so less likely to get mixed up.

If your cat isn’t microchipped, ask your vet to do it next time: it’s the best way to make sure your cat gets back to you if it wanders from home – every vet can access the national database of microchip numbers.

When you visit, you’ll notice the entry airlock with two doors. The doors mustn’t be opened at the same time, and we ask that you take care, especially if you bring children, as some cats are escape artists. If there are cats clustered around the door, just ring the bell and we’ll come and help clear the way. Please don’t open the door if there’s a cat climbing on it!

Our terms and conditions are here.