Important Preparation Notes!
We are an appointment-only shop with NO exceptions! Our front door remains locked unless we are expecting someone so please make an appointment for a drop-off, pick-up, or for any other service. If you'd like to change your scheduled time, please contact us and we're happy to accommodate new times if possible.
If you cat has an injury or illness, please contact us before making a reservation to determine whether it's appropriate to board them with us. Please note that we currently do not accept kitties testing positive for FIV or Feline Leukemia. Sometimes boarding at a veterinarian's office is in your cat's best interest when dealing with an illness or new injury. Please discuss the situation with us prior to reserving as a trial stay may be required! Do not inform us of an issue at your drop-off appointment!
How to Reserve:
1) thoroughly read this entire page and the entire Boarding Agreement (link is at the bottom of this page)! Please be familiar with the contents; please contact us for clarification/more information on any item; emailing your list of questions/concerns works best for the fastest response. Deposits are not refundable so please do this step prior to reserving a room.
2) Reserve a room using the online reservation system, found on both the Home page and the Suites page. Deposits are equivalent to 1-night's stay and will be requested to complete the reservation. (For stays over 21 days, you may book online but please contact us for additional deposit requirements.)
3) complete a Registration Form (if multiple cats, we prefer one form for each cat please)
4) complete a Boarding Agreement (please be sure to read the check-in/check-out information on the form)
5) email vaccination records showing that your cat is current on the FVRCP vaccine. If you don't have those records, please ask your veterinarian's office to email it to us at:
Check-in & Check-out Times:
We can usually accommodate drop-off or pick-up times at any hour with prior arrangement. Please see the A La Carte page (the "Early/Late Check-in/out" box and also the "Pajama Hours" box for applicable charges. "Normal" drop-off appointment times are scheduled between the hours of 2pm-6pm. "Normal" pick-up appointment times are scheduled between 10am-Noon. Times are pre-scheduled and are based on availability. Please list your ideal times on the Boarding Agreement. When reserving a room, please return the Boarding Agreement immediately.
Please confirm your travel plans and make sure you can meet all of our requirements prior to making your reservation as once a deposit is submitted it is non-refundable. We apologize for any inconvenience and will happily make adjustments to your drop-off or pick-up day of an existing reservation. For trip cancellations, please give 48 hours notice; for less than 48 hours notice, 25% of the total will be billed.
Returning clients: After you've reserved a room through the reservation process, please submit a new Boarding Agreement noting your desired drop-off and pick-up times for each trip booked. (As long as your kitty's vaccination record on file with us is still current, nothing further is required.) If there are any changes from kitty's last visit, please give us a detailed explanation so that we have the file updated before kitty arrives. It may be easiest for you to complete a new Registration Form in those instances.
- Please note that our pricing structure has separated out cuddle/play time to our A La Carte menu. If you have a social or needy cat, please see the A La Carte menu for information. Please do not describe your cat as social or needy and then not add appropriate time for them.
- Kitties should arrive with trimmed nails (the front paws, at a minimum). Please only cut the clear portion of the nail, staying away from the quick of the nail. If you don’t have time prior to check-in, we charge a fee of $30 to trim the nails of willing kitties. (For unwilling kitties, there is a $40 charge for having untrimmed nails in our shop so please make sure nails are trimmed prior to drop off!)
- Some kitties benefit from limited food and water intake on check-in day, use your judgement based on your cat's history of tolerating the carrier and a car ride.
- Your cat must arrive in a secure carrier which is to be left with us for the duration of their stay. Please do not use a cardboard carrier/box as street noises encountered on the way to the shop may cause an unexpected reaction resulting in an unsafe situation. In addition, if there is a veterinary or other emergency, a cardboard carrier will not be adequate to transport them.
- Please include a t-shirt or some other washable item with your scent. Ideally, wear the t-shirt overnight the night before kitty checks in. Your scent will last a few days and it will provide comfort to kitty as they adapt to their temporary home. For extended trips, or kitties with separation issues, it's helpful to place extra worn t-shirts in a ziplock bag so that we may periodically remind kitty of your scent.
- Please feel free to bring any of kitty’s toys, blankets, or beds in order to help with settling in!
- You are more than welcome to bring kitty’s own treats. Please note any limitations/instructions on the bag.
- Please pack enough food for the entire stay, plus a few extra days. (We can provide unlimited house kibble for $2/day. Other food options can be found on our A La Carte page.)
- If your cat has separation anxiety or is fearful/very shy, please discuss options with your veterinarian for support/short-term options while being boarded. Please book a trial stay of 1-3 nights while you are within driving distance prior to planning a longer vacation.
- If you cat is experiencing a medical issue/condition where there is a likelihood they may require medical intervention in your absence, please board at a veterinary clinic for your cat's safety.
The comfort and safety of all guests is our first priority! Flea control is mandatory. If you're not comfortable with your cat being on monthly flea control, we are happy to recommend an alternative shop. Unfortunately, we are not able to accommodate kitties unable to accept flea prevention medication. Fleas are pervasive in San Francisco (even indoor-only kitties) so if your kitty isn’t usually kept on flea control, please make sure flea treatment begins a few days prior to kitty’s check-in, if possible. If there is evidence of fleas while kitty is in our care, we will administer Capstar at a fee of $40 + an excessive cleaning fee. If your kitty is a regular user of topical flea prevention but is due for a treatment, please include their next dose in kitty's belongings. (For kitties not current on flea control without beginning their own treatment prior to arriving, we can administer a monthly topical after check-in for $40/dose.)
All guests are required to have the FVRCP vaccine. We don't require additional vaccinations although for indoor-outdoor cats, we also recommend the rabies vaccine. We require copies of vaccine records prior to arrival. Documentation (including legible photo attachments) may be emailed to email@example.com. We are not able to accept guests without documentation so please plan ahead! We regret that we cannot accommodate kitties positive for Feline Leukemia or FIV at this time. For more information about vaccines, please see this information sheet from the San Francisco SPCA here.
Medication, Separation Anxiety & Trial Stays
We medicate willing cats only. If your cat requires medication (even if it is added to food) that can/should not be missed, a trial boarding of at least two nights is required before we will accept a longer booking from a new client. This is for the safety of your cat in order to demonstrate that he/she will accept medication, as some cats will food strike for a short time when in a new environment. If you feel that your cat will warm up with a little more time, please book a longer trial period accordingly. If it's life-threatening medication requiring no missed doses, you must remain in town (or reasonable driving distance) during the trial period.
We offer limited administration of medications. Please see the “what’s included” and “a la carte” pages for descriptions. While we will administer medications to willing cats; we are not veterinary professionals and us medicating an unwilling cat is not appropriate. Your cat receiving their medication is the primary concern so we sometimes advise kitties to be boarded at a veterinary office if the trial visit does not go well.
If your cat has separation anxiety (excessive meowing, pacing, inappropriate urination/potty habits), please book a trial stay. We are willing to work with your and your kitty's veterinarian to find a workable solution but sometimes that can take time; if you are willing to put in the work, we will too. We may have to decline future visits if enough progress isn't made. Please contact us to discuss these situations in detail.
We have limited availability on certain holidays. There is a $50 surcharge for pick-up or drop-off appointments on those days (including, but not limited to, Thanksgiving & Christmas). We will notify you to discuss options if you request appointments on a holiday surcharge day.
Even with careful planning, emergencies sometimes occur. For such instances, our protocol is to obtain a phone triage if available. If a phone consult isn't immediately available, or we believe the situation to be concerning or urgent, we will transport kitty (additional charges apply) to the 24-hour Emergency Services at San Francisco Veterinary Specialists at 600 Alabama @ 18th Street. If your kitty has pre-existing or past health issues, please detail specific emergency instructions in the Registration Form. If we cannot get in touch with you or your designated local emergency contact, we will proceed as listed above. In the event of an emergency and we cannot immediately get in contact with your or your designated emergency contact, we will not hesitate to immediately seek care, as kitty’s health and well-being are our first priority. Every attempt will be made to stay in constant contact with you until the situation is resolved. All related charges, including our transport/wait time fees, are the responsibility of kitty’s guardian/owner.