Cattery Sway

March, but where is Spring?!

March 11, 2020
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We are so desperate for signs that summer is on it’s way, this has certainly been the longest wettest winter. The primroses and daffodils are all in flower around the entrance to Hotel Cat but we want some sun with warmth in it! The donkey’s paddock is still very muddy and they are not happy, fingers crossed the worst of the weather is past and next time I write we will be enjoying an early heat wave!

The Cat Hotel has not been quite as busy due to the uncertainty from coronavirus but we have plenty of bookings coming in for the summer so lets all hope for good news by then. We have been lucky to have only had two cancellations and they were both covered by insurance which covered their boarding fees. It’s been a really odd year so far with Brexit, floods and now coronavirus, lets hope it improves once the sun appears.

We have had new fencing and gates put up in the driveway, it looks so smart and it is now totally secure. Our electrician is coming out next week to fit a video doorbell and floodlights, it really does look so much smarter when you drive in and we love it. Once the trees are in leaf we will get a new video tour done so that the new cat rooms can be seen on the website, we have had great feedback from everyone and lots of new customers already which is great.

The donkeys have their feet being trimmed this weekend and are due their worming so they won’t be happy! Percy and Arthur are doing well with their training and we are now looking for a trailer to take them out in.

Our lovely deer family are all well and last years baby now has tiny antlers appearing, he is so sweet and is fascinated by us walking by!

I hope you all are well and keep that way,

Jackie xx

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Merry Christmas from Hotel Cat

December 2, 2019
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Well December has arrived and we are flat out here preparing the hotel for Christmas. We have had two rooms refurbished with new wallpaper and tiled floors in the garden rooms and the tiler is preparing the next two. It’s lovely to see the rooms looking so fresh and new again ready for the start of a new year. The hotel works so hard during the year and it definitely deserves some tlc, we will be getting a new video tour done in Spring as all the trees and shrubs that were planted have grown so much and the gardens leading to the hotel are looking lovely.

We had a sad middle of the month as one of the baby deer had to be put to sleep. We found him hung up in the stock fencing early one Saturday morning. His back foot had got caught and although we released him he was struggling to walk. We called out the RSPCA and the most lovely, compassionate man arrived, he assessed the deer but couldn’t decide if his hip was broken or dislocated so called out a local vet. On close examination it was discovered that his hip was actually fractured so the decision was made to put him to sleep. We are devastated to lose one and it’s so sad to just have the three left as I’m sure they can’t understand why he didn’t return to the herd. We are still very blessed that they choose to live on the farm and they make us smile every time we see them.

The donkeys are sunbathing today as it’s beautiful outside. Cookie now wears his rug to help keep him warm as he really suffers when it’s cold. They spend most of the day and night in the big barn, but still like to come out for a wander around if it’s nice weather. We are hoping to rehome some ex commercial chickens this month as there is a rehoming day coming up, both us and the cats love watching the chickens wandering around the gardens. Our oldest chickens are coming up seven and although they don’t lay eggs anymore they have a lovely happy life.

We want to take this opportunity to thank you all for your support over the last year, we love all our wonderful guests and adore looking after them for you. We won’t be sending Christmas cards again this year as we use the money to buy meals for the homeless, I know you will understand.

Wishing you all a wonderful Christmas,

Jackie xx

 

 

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Halloween at Hotel Cat

November 2, 2019
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Well it looks like winter is well underway! I am sat here in the warm whilst the wind and rain do their best to rid the trees of all their leaves.

October is always one of our busiest months and this year was no exception. We have had a number of new guests this month which has been lovely, especially when they settle straight in. The majority of first timers have already reserved their suites for next year and I have never seen the diary so full this far in advance, we already have quite a few bookings for 2021 as well!

The donkeys are really fed up with the rain and are spending most of their time in either the barn or the stables, hopefully November will bring some crisp sunshine for them. We have decided to rehome some more chickens so if anyone knows of any elderly girls who need a home please get in touch. Our golden oldie at the moment is seven and going strong, she doesn’t lay eggs anymore but has a lovely retirement running around the donkey paddocks and keeping all the younger girls in check.

All of our own cats are staying indoors now and there is always at least one of them on our bed both day and night, I love knowing they are safe and warm, it’s always a worry when they go outside. All of our guests are lovely and warm in their suites, their heating is on 24 hours a day and very few of them go and sit in the outside rooms, they are usually all in the warm bedroom. It’s so relaxing so be with them and we love being up at Hotel Cat.

We have a quieter couple of weeks coming up so we are looking forward to doing some decorating in the suites that will be empty.

Enjoy your weekend,

Jackie xx

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Busy times at the Cat Hotel

September 1, 2019
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What a hectic month August has been, we haven’t stopped playing and loving cats all month! We have had a really lovely lot of guests throughout August. Some have been many times, others it’s their first time  and we have enjoyed every second of them all. It’s still really sad when they leave but lovely to know that they will be back. September is another really busy month and we have a tiny kitten staying at the moment, he is totally adorable and a total timewaster! We have a number of regular guests who stay every September coming in and it will be lovely to see them again too.

The diary is already filling up quickly for next year so if you have any dates please let us know as soon as possible, some dates are already full up and we don’t like having to turn our lovely regulars away.

The donkeys are full of mischief at the moment and are loving the last of the hot days. They are also loving the bucket of apples they get each day which have fallen from our trees! I’ve never seen so many apples on the trees but between us, the donkeys and the birds they are not going to waste. The crows sit at the top of the trees knocking them down and then flying off with them, that’s if the chickens haven’t got there first!

Our lovely deer family are always here, it’s so lovely to have been able to see the twins growing up and to see them with their Mum and Dad playing in the field each night is so special. They are so used to us now that they just watch us and we can get quite close to them. We adore living here surrounded by animals, it really is our piece of paradise.

We have decided to give the cat hotel a makeover with new wallpaper, redecorating the paintwork and new cat trees, hopefully this will be completed by Christmas and I can’t wait.

Have a wonderful month,

Jackie xx

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It’s Christmas!!!

December 20, 2018
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We are all so excited that it’s Christmas again. All the presents are wrapped and all the cats are having so much fun with the tree, some like climbing it, some like laying under it and some like knocking the baubles off and chasing them around the hall – it is definitely the best cat tree there is!

We have had a fabulous year with lots of regular guests and plenty of new faces too. We just love what we do and wouldn’t swap places with anyone. It’s so lovely to be around the cats and to get such love back from them all. We are busier than ever for next year, the diary has never been so full so early so if you do have a holiday planned please let us know as soon as possible.

The donkeys are now in their full hairy winter coats and spend most of their time in the barn. They do not like the cold and wet so prefer to be waited on hand and foot in their dry quarters, we don’t mind they bring us such joy and are such good company. I have started taking Percy for walks around the lanes, it’s a slow process as everyone wants to stop and talk to him! He loves all the attention and it’s great for his education, although standing still isn’t as much fun as running at the moment!

Talking of running my marathon training for London has started so Sunday mornings are spent doing my long run of the week. I’m up to twelve miles on my long run at the moment, goodness knows where I will find the energy to add another fourteen to that. It’s such a great opportunity though and if I can raise some money for charity then it will be worth it.

Time to go back and entertain my lovely guests. Wishing you all a wonderful Christmas and a very Happy New Year for 2019 and thank you all for your loyalty to Hotel Cat.

Jackie xx

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September at Hotel Cat

September 12, 2018
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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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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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Happy Halloween from Hotel Cat!

October 12, 2017
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I am late writing the blog this month, I think the last month has flown and have no idea where the time has gone. September is always one of our busiest months and we have my Birthday at the end of the month and James our son’s Birthday is on the 1st October. This year was his 21st and we are very proud of the lovely young man he has become and he adores animals as much as Tim and I which is so lovely.

We have had mostly regular cats staying in September and they are all really settled and all lovely. The new cats who have/are staying are also  lovely, we are very lucky to have such wonderful and much loved guests. All the cats heating is now on 24hrs a day and it is toasty when I go in first thing in the morning. All the cats love the heating on and they tend to all be snuggled up on their beds first thing. Today is a lovely day and most of them have been using the garden rooms watching the antics of those naughty donkeys!

I had some exciting news this month, I have a ballot entry for the London marathon! As a number of you know I run regularly, I’m no world record beater, but I love it and I am a member of a great running club. This will be my first ever marathon and I have always said that London is the only one that I would like to take part in. As it is a ballot place I do not have to raise money for charity, but I think I should. I would like to try and help a smaller charity, maybe to try and raise money for a certain piece of equipment or an operation. If anyone has any good ideas please get in touch as it will help me focus on the months of training I have ahead.

All of our lovely animals are well. The donkeys all had their feet trimmed yesterday and they look very smart. The only one who was naughty was Arthur. The tiniest one of the lot of them, you would not believe how much of a monkey he was, yet he is so placid and loving when the farrier is not here! Doumy, our oldest cat is doing really well again. She started to refuse her thyroid pills after taking them for 16 months with no fuss at all. Unfortunately she is not the sort of cat who will have it popped in her mouth and we were fearing the worst, but our vets have just started giving the thyroid medication in syrup form. It should really be given orally, but as this is not an option we put it on her food twice daily and she is looking in great shape again. The chickens are looking a bit bedraggled as a few of them are moulting and there are feathers everywhere, they have also stopped laying eggs, hopefully they will start again in a few weeks, but it doesn’t matter if they don’t as we just love them and they keep the cats highly entertained.

Have a Happy Halloween everyone,

Jackie xx

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January end

January 31, 2017
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January is always the longest and slowest month, although this year we have been exceptionally busy which has helped to speed things up. We have had a number of guests staying for between 1-3 months and it has been lovely having them for so long.  We had three separate families of Bengals staying last week, seven of them in total – definitely a walk on the wild side, well, colour wise they look wild, but their personalities are totally soft and exceptionally playful!

We loved the cold weather as the cat hotel is always so warm, but we are not enjoying this rain. It makes looking after the outside animals hard work, still, they are worth the slog as they are all so loving. I have a seat in the donkey barn and they love it when I go and sit with them all each day. Our oldest donkey had to see the vet this month as his teeth were playing up, he is ok now but will need further work done in 12 weeks. Unfortunately our oldest sheep is struggling with her arthritis, the vet looked at her and said the time is coming to let her go as her mobility is limited. She is on pain relief and stays in the barn, where all the others look after her. If all the donkeys and our other two sheep go out to the field you will always see one of them stay behind to keep her company. They have always lived together with us as a family group and they are very close, I have a lovely photo of Polly as a young sheep meeting Charlie the new born donkey taken 10 years ago.

Our diary for 2017 is very booked up, mostly with our lovely regular guests who book their stays early, but also with  a number of new guests to meet which is always lovely. We have a quieter month coming up in March, so we have decided to have a weekend away, goodness knows if it will happen, but fingers crossed!

Sid the cat checking that there are no more lambs under the bed!

Sid the cat checking that there are no more lambs under the bed!

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Happy New Year!

January 1, 2017
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Happy New Year to everyone, may all your hopes and dreams come true in 2017. We have had an extremely busy Christmas, but it was hugely enjoyable due to having such lovely guests to stay. They all had a stocking to open on Christmas morning and then the three Bengals had a great game of ‘who can climb the Christmas tree fastest’!! We are already fully booked for next Christmas with all of our lovely favourites coming to stay.

The donkeys have been such stars over Christmas. Percy accompanied me on a fancy dress morning held at our running club. Our group won first prize as a nativity scene complete with real donkey and Percy was the star of the show. We have started training him and he loves learning new tricks, he waits for me at the gate each day so that he can come out and perform! Our new donkey Misty has settled in well and is always with Charlie, he still pretends he doesn’t like her when I am there, but goes looking for her when he can’t see her.

We rehomed 12 ex commercial birds in early Dec and they are delightful. They are so confident already and will march straight into the house if we leave the door open. The cats adore watching them during the day as they are such entertaining birds.

Our diary is filling up quickly for the year ahead, for some dates in February we are already full. If you have any dates you would like held please let us know soon as this looks like a very busy year. We would like to thank everyone for using us in 2016, we adore all of your cats and feel very privileged to be able to care for them all.

I must go, I have a cat called Harmony who insists that I sit and read with her in the afternoon…….

Jackie xx

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