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October 14, 2018
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Autumn at Hotel Cat

Sat here on what has been a wet and blustery October day watching the leaves falling off the trees, summer seems a distant memory already.

This year has flown by and we are already planning Christmas, well wondering if we can get the donkeys to wear the elf hats that I have for them so that I can get a perfect Christmas card photo!

Our house is almost finished and it looks lovely, the builders should have finished by the end of this week and it will seem odd to have nobody turning up during the day, odd but lovely – plus we won’t have to make copious amounts of tea and coffee!

We have a new family member too. Someone sent me a link to a puppy that was in foster care through a charity called Pro Dogs Direct. They are a wonderful charity who find homes for unwanted puppies and ex breeding dogs. We fell in love with Sophie as soon as we saw her and applied straight away. She is a tiny Yorkshire Terrier who is blind in one eye and with a skin condition which makes her almost bald. She is a tiny missile who has us all eating out of her paws! She is always up to some form of trouble and we need eyes in the backs of our heads. It’s very cute when we walk around the farm in the evenings with the three big dogs, Nou the Ragdoll cat and this tiny pup in her little pink jumper!

The Cat Hotel is very busy all the way through October and for a large amount of November too. We have had a gorgeous bunch of cats staying, mostly our lovely regular guests, but with one or two new faces who have been delightful and have all booked in for next year already. We are fully booked for quite a few dates next year and are at least half full for the popular months already.

It’s a quiet Sunday afternoon and I’m off with my book to sit with my gorgeous guests, what a perfect day.

Jackie x

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September 12, 2018
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September at Hotel Cat

September already, how did that happen?! Always are busiest month , we call it Silver Tabby and Bengal month as all our regular guest of these two breeds book September. I think at on point we have 3 different families of Silver Tabbies and 3 different families of Bengals staying at the same time. We have had a few first time guests lately including Cyril the Sphinx who has just started his own instagram page, you can find him under Cyril Sphinx. He is just the funniest little man and had us in hysterics with his antics. It’s not a breed I would have considered having had I not met them, but they are the funniest and most loving characters and if we were going to have an indoor cat then they would be my first choice, you could never be bored with a Sphinx around!

The Cat Hotel has been fully booked all summer and we only have limited space left for the rest of the year as even November is really busy. The cats heating is now back on in the evenings and it won’t be long before it has to be on 24hrs. As much as I love summer , I do love the Autumn and the preparation for winter. The hedges around the farm are booked in to be trimmed which always looks so smart and all the logs are being stacked. The donkeys have their hay and straw ready for the cold months, although they do have a small amount in the evenings now as they tell me they are starving?!

Our building works are now in there 11th week and the novelty has worn off! As lovely as the builders are it’s hard work with all the dust and mess, however the end is in sight as they are now plastering the walls and we have a flooring company coming in next week to measure for the finished floor. The cats and dogs are completely unfazed by all the chaos at the back of the house which amazes me. The cats think that the sand has been put there just for them, I just hope cat poo in the cement mix isn’t a bad thing!

We have a lovely group of cats staying at the moment and it is such a joy to be with them. I am off with my book to entertain and provide a lap for them for the rest of the day.

Jackie x

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August 9, 2018
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Summer Time at Hotel Cat

A late update this month, I have no idea where the last month has gone! What a fabulous summer we have had, I know not everyone loves the heat but the cats and donkeys love it! Cats just love sunbathing and lay watching the birds devouring the feeders outside their windows. We have so many birds this year and are constantly filling the feeders to keep up with demand. We were walking up to the hotel one evening this week watching a young barn owl flying through the oak trees, we adore being so close to nature. We still have the two deer who live on the farm and they are so used to seeing us that they rarely move when we walk past them, what an odd lot we must look, two adults, three dogs, one cat and at least one donkey!

The cat hotel has been flat out as usual, at the moment we have three separate families of Maine Coons staying, including one very mischievous 7 month old kitten. We have also had a few cats who have used the new cat wheel and they seem to really enjoy it.

We have had builders at the house for the past six weeks building a new extension, it’s looking huge and will make a massive difference to our living space. It means that our main living rooms will overlook the donkey paddock and there faces will be the first thing we see when we wake up. The trouble is they line up by the fence waiting for us every morning as they all have a biscuit for breakfast and as soon as they see us they start braying!

We have a huge number of people booking for both next year and for 2020, which is great but does mean that if you leave it too late we cannot guarantee you a room, so please let us know as soon as you possibly can if you need dates held.

Right I’m off to play with my lovely guests 🙂

Jackie xx

 

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June 27, 2018
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Flaming June at Hotel Cat

Wow what a fantastic summer we are having, it is bliss here on the farm and the grass hardly needs mowing which is great! The farm is a hive of activity with plenty of baby birds and rabbits for the cats to watch. Our resident squirrels are getting very fat as they are usually on the bird feeders and are so entertaining to watch. Our hay has been cut and is all stacked in the barn ready for winter and everything is very peaceful.

Last week we had to have our beloved girl Doumy put to sleep aged 15. She had become progressively frail and life was a struggle. Our lovely vet Ellen came to the house and Doumy slipped away very peacefully, she is buried under the apple trees so that we know she is always close. We miss her dreadfully, but know that we had her for two and a half years longer than the vets anticipated with all her health issues, she was certainly a fighter.

The cat hotel has been very busy with lots of regular guests, plus a few new faces. The hotel stays very cool when it is hot due to the amount of insulation, but the cats will always seek out the sunniest spot to lie in and bake! We keep a very close eye on everybody and make sure they don’t overdo it.

The vet has just been out and given the donkeys their regular dental treatment to make sure they can eat properly, this is usually an annual occurrence in the younger ones, but Cookie and Holly are done every three months due to their age. Farrier next week, we will never have much in the bank, but love this life so much.

We have a very hectic summer ahead, we only have one 10 day slot available between now and mid October, some of November is full, Christmas and New Year is full and the diary is filling up for next year. Please if you do have any dates you would like held the sooner we know the better.

Enjoy the sunshine 🙂

Jackie x 

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May 15, 2018
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May – our favourite month at Hotel Cat

We love May, it heralds the arrival of summer and everything looks wonderful here at the farm. We have baby birds galore and the bird feeders around the cattery are being filled at least twice a day to keep up with demand! The sheep have now had their thick winter coats removed and are much happier, they look very smart too.

The donkeys are busy shedding their coats and we often see the jackdaws sitting on their backs picking at the loose hairs. Yesterday whilst sat outside I saw a red kite fly over, it’s only the second time we have seen them around here and I do hope they are here to stay.

The cat hotel is really busy and filled with the most wonderful guests, I know I’m biased, but I do believe that we get the best cats staying with us. We have a pair of identical young ginger boys staying here at the moment. They are gangly with lean long bodies and must have purr switches everywhere as when you touch them they purr non stop! It’s lovely to see them so happy and I love watching their crazy antics – I find the outside rugs in all sorts of places where they practice their skidding moves! We also have our first Munchkin kitten, she too has settled straight in and is just gorgeous. We have made her steps so that she is able to climb up on the bed and cat trees. We have a busy summer ahead of us and can’t wait as it’s full of lots of our favourite guests.

Right, back up to play with the cats – enjoy the sunshine everyone 🙂

Jackie xx

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April 18, 2018
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April – Sunshine at last!

It seems unbelievable that a month ago it was snowing and now we are basking in glorious sunshine – You just cannot beat the British weather for diversity!

The donkeys are all very happy and are starting to shed their coats. They adore the sunshine and have spent today sunbathing in the paddock by the cat hotel. It’s so lovely to see all the trees and hedges turning green at last and our first oak tree has just started to show it’s lovely fresh green leaves. Our chickens are starting to lay again and we pick up at least 6 eggs a day, which is not bad for a group of pensioners. They too adore sunbathing and are regularly found spread out on our sun loungers!

We have had a really busy Easter and after a quieter week this week we are flat out again from the weekend onwards. We now have very limited space left from now until the end of October. May has a long waiting list as does the first two weeks of September. We are even fully booked for most of next April (2019). If you do have any dates please do get in touch as we have had to let a number of people down lately which is not something that we like to do.

We have some adorable guests with us at the moment, including two mischievous Burmese brothers. One of them gives the best head bumps and nose kisses and they are terrible time wasters!

The outside of the Hotel has had a fresh coat of paint and looks very smart. We are off to sort the hanging baskets this week so that it looks very colourful too.

Hope all your lovely cats are enjoying the sunshine again too.

Jackie xx

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March 2, 2018
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Mad March Weather!

I never imagined that I would be writing in March whilst the snow fell outside the window! Our poor daffodils have disappeared under the snow and all signs of Spring have been put on hold.

The donkeys are very unimpressed, although they are all warm and dry. Cookie and Holly have their rugs on to help them keep warm as they are both older, but the younger ones are much more active and don’t like having their rugs put on at all. It is hard work making sure that all the outside animals have enough water as all the troughs and outside taps are frozen solid, so Tim and I take it in turns to walk up with a pair of watering cans every hour to top them up. The chickens have refused to come out of their barn for the last two days, they have never seen snow before and are not happy! Still, I’m sure by next week this weather will be a distant memory and Spring will arrive.

Our guests are all warm and snug in their suites. The heating is so effective and it is lovely to see them all so happy. We have an elderly Siamese staying with us for a few weeks and he is a joy to be with as he loves to cuddle up on your lap. I think we all crave a lap cat but it is always on the cats terms not ours! We have a number of bookings coming in daily now and the diary is looking pretty full. There is no space at all left for May and September is almost full too, so if you do have any dates the sooner we know the better.

A quick reminder that our prices went up by £1 a day in January.

Right, I’m back up to entertain my lovely guests and then to settle down with a book and my lap cat friend  – as the song says ‘let it snow, let it snow, let it snow’!

Jackie x

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February 5, 2018
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February – here at last!

It is true that January is the slowest month of the year! At last we have the arrival of February which shows early signs of Spring. We have a row of very old Damson trees leading up to the cat hotel and they are already starting to shoot little green leaves. They are always the first trees to show and we love watching them daily for more growth.

January was another busy month, full of both regular and new guests. We tend to show a large number of people around the hotel in January who are booking for the first time. The diary is getting full quite quickly which is lovely to see.

I was reading one of my blog posts from February 2016 and it was then that our old cat Doumy was diagnosed with her tumour. I cannot believe that two years later we are still lucky enough to have her with us. She is almost 15 now and completely adored by us all, our children were only 3 & 6 when she arrived and they cannot remember a time without her. At mealtimes she will sit by their plates and wait for titbits, although she will refuse to touch it unless it is exactly the right size!

The donkeys are all well and are having a great game today as they get really playful when it is frosty outside. They spend approx. 20 hours of the day in the barn as they don’t approve of the wet fields. We rehomed 6 new chickens last month who were a bit freaked out by the donkeys at first, but they have settled down now and will often be found scratching around in the barn with them.

I must go back up and entertain our lovely guests, we have Sebastian the gorgeous silver tabby staying and he is very demanding of lots of love!

Jackie x

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January 11, 2018
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Happy New Year from Hotel Cat

Wishing everyone a very Happy and Healthy 2018, I hope you all had a lovely,stress free Christmas and that all your cats are in perfect health.

Our Christmas with the cats was lovely, they were all regular visitors and they all enjoyed being thoroughly spoilt. I had my Mum staying so the cats had an extra lap which went down well. We are still really busy this month and our last Christmas guest goes home on Friday. Poppy has stayed for the last forty days and I shall miss her terribly. We have a lovely afternoon routine where her and I curl up on the bed with a book, she is such relaxing company and the perfect excuse for putting my feet up. Tim meanwhile entertains the more energetic guests and Poppy loves to watch the antics beside me. We have a number of cats who stay for long periods and I know their parents are always worried at first, but the cats settle in so well and we do spend an awful lot of time with them all throughout the day and evenings. It is lovely and warm in all the suites, the heating is set to a minimum of 21 degrees and is on 24 hours a day, we do not like the cold and neither do the cats!

The donkeys enjoyed being thoroughly spoilt over Christmas and even had their own Christmas tree outside their barn! I hope this year they will have a new barn, we are in the process of getting quotes now. I would like them to have heat lamps for when it gets cold, but Tim says that may be a step to far – plus he thinks Charlie would pull them all down as he does like to play with anything new! Could you imagine it though, all the donkeys stood under heat lamps on a frosty night, it makes me smile just to think of it!

Our old dog Kia was rushed to the vet last week and it turned out that she had a large growth in her abdomen. We were faced with the decision of whether to let her go or put her through an operation. She will be 12 in March so the decision was not easy, but we decided that we had to try. The vets removed the growth and her spleen. The growth was a kilo in weight and was infected, which is why she was so poorly. We were called back in on the Friday as she was not doing well, but she did eat a spoonful of food for us. We were then told on the Saturday that they didn’t think she would recover, but asked if we would like to take her home to spend the last couple of days with her. She then started to turn the corner and is now back to her old self, she even climbed on the sofa with me last night! We know everyday is a bonus and sometimes it takes something out of the blue for you to realise that we wont have our pet family forever, they are all so precious to us and I don’t think there is anything that we would not do for them.

We were back on television again last week which led to a flurry of new bookings. We are full for certain dates in Feb, May and September now. If you do have plans for this year the earlier we know the better.

Right, must go back and entertain. I have three Poppy’s in three different suites and they all have one thing in common, they LOVE fuss! Next time I write it will be February and Spring will be just around the corner, not long now……..

Jackie xx

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December 11, 2017
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Merry Christmas from Hotel Cat

We are all so excited about Christmas here at the farm. I have, rather smugly, finished all of my Christmas shopping and have most things wrapped. I can now relax and enjoy the company of the beautiful guests who are now arriving for their Christmas holidays. We have had our busiest ever November and have met a number of new guests who have already booked their second holidays with us, including two of the cutest Siberian kittens who adored cuddles! We have a full hotel all over Christmas and they are all regular guests who we know like they are our own. We shall be spoiling them with a festive lunch and hope that Santa will pay them all a visit as I’m sure they have all been very good all year!

It is very cold here at the moment, but no snow which is a shame as I wanted the young donkeys to experience it for the first time. Our old donkey Cookie now wears his coat as he feels the cold, but the others don’t like wearing them so we only put them on if needed. The donkeys, sheep and goats spend most of their time in their barn when it is cold and are very insistent on regular top ups of hay and straw, bellowing loudly when they see me in the hotel through the windows!

We are getting very booked up for 2018 and already have some dates which are fully booked, mostly in January, February, May and June. If you have any dates which you would like held please get in touch as soon as possible to guarantee a space. There are only two spaces left for Christmas 2018!

We are not sending cards again this year as we are giving to charity, but wish you all a wonderful Christmas and a happy and healthy New Year.

Give all your cats a cuddle from us,

Jackie & Tim xxxx

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