My 5 1/2 month old kitten got spayed yesterday! The vet said to leave the e-collar on for 14 days, and to try to keep her from exerting herself too much. They recommended I keep her in a safe place where she won't be able to jump a lot until she is recovered, to allow the incision to heal. I kept her in the bathroom overnight to be safe, but she will jump at the door if she knows I'm in the apartment, so other than that I've let her roam as usual and just kept a close eye on her.

I will be out of town next weekend for three days (days 8-10 after the surgery) so I'm trying to figure out what to do. The other times I've been out of town, I've gotten a sitter to come check on her in my apartment - she seems lonely when I get back, but otherwise fine. The other option is boarding, which I did for one day at the vet's, and she seemed terrified when I got her back and took a while to unwind.

My concern is that leaving her at home with a cone and a not-totally-healed incision is dangerous, even with someone coming by once or twice a day. (Also, leaving her in small bathroom for that long seems cruel.) On the other hand, I am worried that boarding her would cause too much stress. On the other other hand, this is my first cat and I've read elsewhere that kittens are usually fine after a couple days, so maybe it's not a big deal?

What are the pros and cons of hiring a cat-sitter vs. boarding in this situation? Are there other options or concerns I should consider?

  • Or find a trustworthy cat-loving friend who is willing to board the little one, or stay in your place over the weekend to keep an eye on her. I've been hiring my niece as cat-sitter since she was old enough to be trusted to deal with litterbox and can opener, to lock up when she left, and to call her parents and/or the vet if there was a problem.
    – keshlam
    Oct 28, 2016 at 22:53
  • @keshlam Yeah, that would be ideal! Unfortunately, I don't have any local cat-loving friends that I would feel comfortable giving keys to my apartment.
    – user812786
    Oct 29, 2016 at 2:08

1 Answer 1


Self-answering what I've decided to do:

Over the weekend I kept an eye on her, while letting her roam as usual during the day. The e-collar makes her a bit more clumsy, but otherwise she didn't get into any troubling situations and has been running and jumping about (despite my best efforts the first couple days) with no discomfort or injury.

So, I feel comfortable leaving her at home now instead of boarding.

Factors contributing to this decision:

  • She has been in excellent health as a kitten, and is recovering well from the surgery
  • The e-collar has held up against all attempts to get it off
  • I've kitten-proofed well enough that she won't get stuck anywhere because of the e-collar
  • She was very displeased being confined in the bathroom even overnight, so I'm sure sticking her in a small kennel with strange smells and noises would be way worse

Another alternative that was suggested was having a friend stay in my apartment with her, or having her stay at their place for the weekend. This would have been my first choice if I felt she needed closer supervision. Unfortunately I didn't have anyone local I could ask to do that, but it's something that could work well for others.

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