If you joined us for our Cattery Open Day recently you will have had a peek at our fabulous new Cattery Enrichment Room. This fantastic space consists of two main rooms; a play area and a mock up 'home' environment and an outdoor run. Both rooms have windows that open onto their own large section of outdoor space which has a range of sensory experiences including different surfaces such as gravel, paving and astro turf and a range of cat friendly plants. Cats can wander freely in their section, enjoying feeling the sun on their backs and fresh air and watch 'bird tv' courtesy for a strategically placed bird feeder! Don't worry, the birds are completely safe as the run is secure (and they know it) and the cats often spend a long time watching them intently. The playroom has a range of toys, scratching posts and climbing frames while the home room has a large sofa, tv and even a mechanical fish tank.
The enormous benefits we are already seeing to our cats is just amazing. Cats such as Ruby who can be a little defensive in her usual unit has been rolling around on her back and asking for tummy tickels as well as jumping up for a cuddle with staff on the sofa! It is also the perfect location to get our kittens ready for life in a home and start their socialization in the crucial early weeks of their lives. We hope that the Enrichment Room will make the stay in cattery much more enjoyable for all of our cats and be a place were adopters can spend time getting to know potential adoptees in a more normal environment. Our units are large and spacious and our staff and volunteers spend hours with all of our cats but the simulated home environment gives a real chance for a proper leg stretch and a feeling of independence which is impossible to fully replicate elsewhere. Some cats can find cattery life stressful and potential adopters may not see their true nature which can mean it takes longer to find new homes. This amazing new facility, funded by a grant from the Pet Plan Charitable Trust and gifts from individual donors, is going to be life changing for our cats and is part of our commitment to constantly finding new ways to improve the welfare of animals in our care.