Coming back from holiday, you'll probably be feeling nice and relaxed after a bit of time away. Although holidays always seem to be over too quickly, they give you an opportunity to hit the reset button and unwind before you get back into the routine of daily life, no matter how much you might be dreading that.
Of course, if you're a cat owner, the one silver lining about the end of your holiday is that you'll be able to see your little four-legged companion again. If your cat has been in boarding while you've been away, you might be eager to pick them up and bring them home, but when you do so, make sure you let them readjust easily by following these tips.
Let them come out in their own time
When you first get your cat back home, don't drag them out of the carrier and force them to have cuddles. They may be feeling stressed, betrayed, and unsure of the world. Just put the carrier somewhere quiet, open the door, and let your cat come out and explore when they want to.
It's best to bring a cat home to a quiet house, so don't plan any large parties when you first get back. It's fine to have the family round after a day or two, but it's a bit much for a stressed cat immediately. Try and keep a calm atmosphere while the cat gets used to being home again.
Watch out for problems
While a certain amount of stressed behaviour is normal and will pass fairly quickly, you should be aware of any potentially serious problems developing. A cat might not eat right away, but if this goes on for too long, there could be another problem that's causing it, so see a vet.
Be particularly cautious if you have more than one cat. They might get on well usually, but with the stress of going to boarding and then home again, fights can break out. Make sure they're interacting with each other normally.
Keep the cat indoors for a few days
Cats under stress can do all sorts of unpredictable things, so if they normally go outdoors, keep them in for at least the first 24 hours, preferably longer. This will ensure they can't run away or hide somewhere and become trapped.
Give them some space
If your cat seems more aloof than usual, keeping their distance and sulking, just give them a bit of time. Forcing them to spend time with you can just make it all worse; they'll come round before long, and you'll have your normal cat back in no time.