cattery hampshire

Autumn has arrived at Hotel Cat

September 30, 2019
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I can’t believe the change in the weather and miss the long hot summer days so much! The Cat Hotel is toasty warm already as all the heating is back on and when I go up first thing in the morning it’s lovely as the heating in our house isn’t switched on yet! We have had a really busy September as usual and have a really busy October to look forward to. September has been full of our favourites and I adore them all, we have quite a few elderly guests and they are all looking in really good health which is so lovely to see.

The donkeys have just had their feet trimmed and are looking really smart. they are spending more time in the barn now and make their presence known if they are feeling peckish! The cats find them absolutely fascinating and are often sat in the window seats watching them. Our new ducks are also a big hit with the cats as they are always around the Cat Hotel and are such funny characters.

We are taking bookings daily now for next year so if you have any dates that you need held the sooner we know then the more chance there is of you booking your required suite.

I’m off now to spend the evening with my lovely guests and enjoy the warmth!

Have a lovely month,

Jackie x

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April – Sunshine at last!

April 18, 2018
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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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Merry Christmas from Hotel Cat

December 11, 2017
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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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Bonfire Night!

November 5, 2017
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With the short evenings and the approach of Christmas it feels like winter is upon us. Today has been a beautiful day and we are busy with tidying up around the hotel. The car park is having a new surface and we are repainting the outside of the building. We have been flat out all year and have a week approaching where we have only opened half of the hotel so that we can redecorate the suites. The two Royal Mews are going to have new wallpaper and I’m off to choose it tomorrow, I have no idea what colour until I see it!

We have a hotel full of our lovely regular guests staying at the moment. I adore all their different personalities, they are all so individual and so much fun. I can’t believe how busy November is and we have turned many bookings away for the last two weeks as we filled up quickly. We have so many bookings coming in for 2018 already and  if you have any dates you would like held the sooner we know the better.

The donkeys don’t much like the onset of winter, they love the sun and their favourite pastime is sunbathing! Cleaning their barn out daily takes so long as they all insist on ‘helping’. Percy is the worst as if you try and carry on working he runs straight between your legs, there is never a dull moment here!

Right, back to the cats. I have a great book on the go and a number of cats who adore me sitting still for a few hours, it’s a tough life but someone has to do it!

Jackie xx

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September at Hotel Cat

September 7, 2017
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I can’t believe that summer is over and that autumn has appeared so quickly this year. Fortunately we are all prepared for winter with plenty of hay and straw supplies in our barn. The new lights up the driveway are getting plenty of use now that the evenings are drawing in, with the added bonus that they are very pretty!

August was another really busy month, filled with the most wonderful guests, both old and new. We even had two families drop their cats off on the same day and collect them 10 days later as they both went on the same cruise out of Southampton. Both of the families had booked the Royal Mews , so the cats had adjoining suites, but they didn’t know each other at all, talk about coincidence! September and October are incredibly busy months and even November is nearly full up which is fantastic.

The donkeys are really well and live in hope that someone will give them one of the many apples that are under the trees. We gather them up in a bucket each day and the donkeys form a line along the fence waiting for them! Holly made us laugh this week when she came in the garden for her feed, I had left her out there and popped indoors and two minutes later she was in the kitchen raiding the fruit bowl! If there is a melon in there she can smell it from outside – all the donkeys adore melon and we always save them the skins, but I think she decided she wanted the whole thing instead!

We have nearly finished renovating the house now and the new stair and landing carpet is going down as I write. We will then start work on the outside and Tim is desperate for the old garage to be replaced as it is past it’s best. I had a lovely phone call from one of the family who used to live here recently and she told me lots of bits about the farm and how much it was loved by them all. She also sent old photos of the original house which was on the site and it is so lovely to have all the information about the farms past. Everyone who comes here loves it as it is a very happy, peaceful place and I’m sure that is because it has always been so well loved.

Right, I had better go and see my lovely guests, they always want to know where I have been and I shall have a lovely afternoon entertaining them.

Jackie xx

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Summer madness at the Cat Hotel

August 5, 2017
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It doesn’t feel like we have stopped this month, there is always so much to do and never enough hours in the day! The weather here has turned into a normal British summer of sunshine and showers, we are all hoping for another heat wave before Autumn makes an appearance.

The Cat Hotel has been very busy and everyday is filled with gorgeous guests, love and laughter. We have a 7 month Siamese staying and she is the hotel comedienne. She loves making you laugh and is just so adorable – one day I would love a Siamese to join our family – until then I get to enjoy other people’s. I cannot believe how busy we are for the next few months, other than the odd couple of days we are full until the end of October. We had no idea how popular Hotel Cat would be and thank you all so much for supporting us. We adore what we do and are so very lucky to spend our lives with so many wonderful animals.

I have been to Ikea buying new beds and furniture this week, I even managed to build two of the units on my own! The cats adore ‘helping’ and making sure that the furniture is suitable for cats by balancing on it as it was being assembled! I am waiting to see if we can be suppliers for Kerbl cat furniture. We use it at Hotel Cat as it is so well designed and a bit different from other cat furniture on the internet. Hopefully we will be accepted.

The donkeys are all looking well and are enjoying all the fallen apples that they are given daily. They line up along the fence opposite the apple trees and start braying for someone to collect the fruit!

We are having a small price increase of £1 per cat per day from the 1st January. We have held our prices for the last two years, but our bills are going up and we do like to keep the cat radiators on 24 hours a day from September until May.

Enjoy your August and hopefully the sun will keep shining on you all.

Jackie x

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Happy April!

April 1, 2017
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I cannot believe March has gone already, why does the time fly so fast when the weather improves?! We had a lovely week off and had a couple of days away with James and Lucy which was lovely. Our wonderful friends Sue and Andy moved in to look after our animals and they were all thoroughly spoilt – the added bonus was that the house was immaculate – we must go away again!

We started taking cats again once we were back on the Sunday and have been fully booked ever since, bookings are now coming in for September and October and the diary is looking quite full. We have had lots of our usual gorgeous regular guests staying lately and Tim had to collect from both Kensington and Baker Street in London this week. He loves going up to the city as he says it is so incredible to drive through, he is always glad to get back to the peace of the New Forest at the end of the day – we are so incredibly lucky to live in such a beautiful place.

We have been busy around the farm removing the ancient barb wire fences and clearing brambles before they take over. The deer are regular visitors and we will leave long grass under the oak trees for them to hide in. Holly the donkey has just been diagnosed with laminitis, which is a serious condition which affects her feet. She kept going lame and we assumed that it was because she had a foot abscess, but when the vet did x-rays this week she found the laminitis. Holly now has to come off grass until it has settled down and unfortunately she will always have to be restricted. The other donkeys take it in turns to be with her and at night they are all together, they are such a lovely family.

We have a very busy month ahead with lovely cats both in already and due in soon. I have had an awful cold this week and it is so lovely to snuggle up on one of the beds with the cats and recover. I actually fell asleep this week and woke up with two Burmese sleeping on me – I love my ‘job’.

I better go as it is nearing teatime for the cats and I’ll get told off if I’m late!

Wishing you all a happy and peaceful Easter,

Jackie x

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March the beginning of Spring

March 1, 2017
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Thank goodness March is finally here, it’s one of my favourite months as it heralds the start of Spring. The daffodils and crocuses are in full bloom and the birds are very busy in the nest boxes which are all around the gardens. The sheep which a local farmer puts on our fields for the winter have now left to have their lambs at home and hopefully the deer will make an appearance again soon.

February was another exceedingly busy month, I don’t think we had many days when we did not have a ‘full house’ of guests. Our lovely Bengal family, which have been with us since before Christmas go home next week. We shall miss them terribly as they are such fun and always looking for mischief! We have had a few new faces staying this month and it is always lovely to watch their character’s come through once they realise we are not the vets!

Percy, our gorgeous miniature donkey, turned two last week. He had plenty of treats, especially digestive biscuits of which he is particularly partial. He is still enjoying his therapy training and we are now saving up for a small horsebox so that we can take him out. All the other donkeys are very well, but look a bit tatty with their thick woolly coats.

We have a slightly quieter month in March, we are even taking a few days away – we don’t know where yet, as with the amount of animals we have we don’t like to plan too much in advance. The cat hotel is shut from the 21st – 26th, it will feel very odd, but lovely to have a few days away.

Wishing everyone a happy month and I’ll speak to you all once the temperature has risen!

Jackie x

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November Over

November 30, 2016
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Why do winter months always last longer than summer months?! We have had a quieter month, which has allowed us to decorate some of the suites and have a good tidy up in the gardens. Our first Christmas cat arrived last week and we have three more arriving over the next week. Our Christmas tree is now up and all the cats presents are wrapped up underneath. We have such fun putting the tree up and trying to wrap as the cats always ‘help’! One of our guests, ‘Ally’ managed to put claw marks down a whole roll of wrapping paper and every time I would lay it out he would throw himself in it!! We have some amazing guest staying at the moment and it is so lovely to see how warm and relaxed they are. When I go in first thing the heating is so warm and the cats are always so comfortable, I am so proud of how well the hotel works for the cats as playing with them in their suites is what keeps them and us happy. We love being with the cats throughout the day and they never get put to bed before 9pm. Their heating is on 24 hrs and we always leave them with a night light once the main lights are off.

The donkeys are all well and we have a new arrival! Her name is Misty and she is nearly 3. Her previous owner wanted to find a permanent home for her and a mutual friend put her in touch with us. She arrived three weeks ago and after some additional problems, with her adjusting to living in a group, she is settling in well. She is a white donkey like Charlie and they look incredibly cute together! The donkeys, sheep and goats love their new barn and spend most of their time in there, much to the delight of the cats who find them highly amusing!

We have 12 new hens joining our family on Saturday. They are ex commercial birds, who once they reach a certain age are slaughtered due to their egg production dropping. Fortunately, there are fantastic groups around who find homes for these girls and we are very much looking forward to meeting ours. This is the third lot we have taken over the last 10 years and we highly recommend it as they are such characters. The cats love to watch the chickens and ducks and they are such peaceful birds to have around, we normally have eggs to give away in the spring so bring a tub if you would like any.

Bookings are coming in daily for next year. February, Easter and May are booking up fast at the moment, so if you need any dates held please let us know as soon as possible.

Please do not be offended by our second year of no Christmas cards, we have joined the ranks of giving the money to charity instead and have this year decided to support Freshstartforhens who found our girls for us.

I must get back up to my lovely guests. Wishing you all wonderful Christmas and may all your dreams come true.

Jackie xx

 

 

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September over – Autumn arrives

September 30, 2016
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Well, it would appear today that Autumn has arrived. The shorts have been packed away until next year and the jumpers are making an appearance. It has been a fantastic summer at Hotel Cat and we are busy tidying up the outside buildings ready for the winter. The hedges are being cut next week and we are planting new trees around the gardens.

We have had a very busy September with lots of familiar faces coming to stay. It’s funny how the cats know which suite is theirs and how they settle straight back in. We now have the heating back on and the suites are toasty warm in the mornings. We have Enzo and Aston the British Blues staying with us at the moment and Enzo loves to snuggle up under his duvet, you would think he would be too hot, but he loves to snuggle. We also have Ronnie and Reggie the Silver Tabbies, Poppy and Tabitha the Bengals and Florence and Ravello the Silver Tabbies have just gone home. I love the imaginative names, we have always been hopeless at trying to think of a name which is different. We had two cats called Neko in last week in opposite suites, apparently Neko means cat in Japanese, you learn something new everyday!

The donkeys are all really well and just adorable. Their newly refurbished winter accommodation, which is right outside the cats suites, is finished. They now have a concrete base, which will be far easier to keep clean and will help their feet. They are desperate to break into the barn with their winter hay and try daily to find a new way in! They are frequently found now in the paddock by the drive, patiently waiting for someone to give them the fallen apples off the trees.

We have a busy month coming up in October, but we ease down in November, our first month when we have not been fully booked weeks in advance! Bookings are flying in for 2017 and we even have a couple in for 2018 – it also looks like Christmas 2017/2018 is already full…….!

Must go, I have a hotel full of gorgeous guests to entertain, it’s a tough job, but someone has to do it!

Jackie xx

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