What to Do with Kids and Cats While Showing House (2023)

Updated on March 05, 2010

S.C. asks from Mankato, MN

9 answers

We're selling our house and I'm looking for ideas of what to do with our kids (3 1/2 years and 8 months) and two cats while showing our house. We live in Minnesota, so it's still pretty cold and we don't have any neighbors we know well. To make things worse, we have a showing scheduled during nap time when we have a babysitter! Any suggestions on how to handle the kids and cats or how to wor around kids' schedules would be appreciated.

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own questionAdd Question
  • Jointhe Mamapedia communityMamapedia
  • Report

    Report This

    as inappropriate
  • this with your friends
  • WriteMessageS.C.S.C. a private message
  • Read moreMore fromthat S.C. has writtenS.C.
  • Browselocal questionsQuestions
  • Helpful?

So What Happened?

The babysitter crated the cats and stuck them in the furnace/storage room and took the kids to the mall. We paid her extra! Then the realtor put a note to not have showings during my son's nap time (daughter's afternoon nap time is then too). It worked out for the one showing and I think we've got solutions for future showings too. Thank you everyone for the suggestions and support.

Featured Answers

What to Do with Kids and Cats While Showing House (1)

(Video) Moving with Cats made Easy!


answers from Minneapolis on

I don't have a good answer for you, but i am sympathizing with you because I recently sold my house and had the same issue! The very best thing to do is to leave the house with the kids and cats. Buyers don't want to look at a house while the owner is there and they don't care for animals being around either. I know it is difficult, i just drove around with my 2 kids and dog every time we had a showing. My house sold very quickly and part of it was that we left the house. Sorry i don't have a better answer. Good luck!

  • Report This

More Answers

What to Do with Kids and Cats While Showing House (2)


answers from Indianapolis on

There are 2 things you can do.

1. Don't accept showings during those times. You always have the option of saying yes or no. You can explain through your realtor that it's not a good time or that you'll be there because of naps (that they're welcome to visit), but that you and your children/babysitter will be there.

2. With the cat - we had the same issue. If it's only going to be a few minutes of showing, and you're going to be right back, put them in a closed closet or something with a post-it that the cat is in there.
You can also explain to the realtor that there is a cat in the house, to please not let it out and to leave all doors open so it isn't trapped anywhere.

  • Report This

What to Do with Kids and Cats While Showing House (3)


answers from Jacksonville on

(Video) How to teach naughty cats a lesson #shorts

We are in the same boat. I have a very social cat that would jump at the chance to meet new people or run out the door. SO we are putting our dog crate up in our daughters room. We'll put the cats in there, it will only be for a while anyway. THen they are safe.
You can specify times when you will not allow people into the house. 1-3 is off limits period. I told my realtor 24 hours. I have a dog that will bite and I want to be able to leave with the dog before any potential people come near my house.
I have moved 6 times with little ones. I have gone to the church nursery, the library, Target, McDonald's play place, the park, the mall. I have sat in my car with a movie on down the street.
I hate this part. I have three dogs, three cats, and 4 kids and I homeschool two of them.
Good luck.

  • Report This

What to Do with Kids and Cats While Showing House (4)


answers from Seattle on

Take your kids to the library or the mall to hang out for a few hours and crate the cats. If you have a garage that will be warm enough, I would leave the cats there, also make sure you put away the cat boxes - I love cats, always had cats when growing up, but they do smell. You will not be able to notice it, but someone else will as they step into your home - nothing is quite the turnoff like cat smell! Make sure your home is well aired before the showing.
I would not worry about naptime, maybe the little one will nap in the car or stroller... if your really want to sell the house one day with a non-regular nap should be ok.
Good luck.

What to Do with Kids and Cats While Showing House (5)


answers from Minneapolis on

I would drop them all off at a friend's house at least a couple hours before the showing to make sure you have enough time to pick up after the kids, hide majority of their toys from sight, and hide all evidence of the cats. You definitely don't want any of them there during the showing and since you're dropping them off ahead of time you can schedule a showing whenever works for the buyers since they can nap/eat/bathe at your friend's.

For this instance where the kids are with the babysitter during this particular showing...do you trust the babysitter to drive your kids? The sitter could take them to the Children's Museum. The 8 mo old is free and it's only 3 dollars for the sitter and 3 more for the 3 1/2 year old. I'm sure the older one will be so excited about everything that they could take a later nap just for the occasional showing.

  • (Video) We lost our cats during moving to a new house...

    Report This

What to Do with Kids and Cats While Showing House (6)


answers from Jacksonville on

I know you want to show your home at every opportunity, but if your kids are napping, then I would tell the realtor that the house isn't available to be shown at that time. In fact, if naptime is ALWAYS at the same times, you could make it part of the info... "call for appt... not available for showing between 11:00-2:00" or whatever naptime is.

I would not allow the house to be shown with your kids and a babysitter there. That is a very awkward scenario for your sitter. Just tell the realtor that your home isn't available at that particular time. If they want to see it, they will figure out an alternative time... often the agent can flip-flop the list of homes, starting at the other end of their list and your home can be shown an hour or two earlier or an hour or two later than first requested.

Honestly, people are uncomfortable looking at your house with you there. They want to be able to open closets and cabinets and look around in the garage without feeling weird about it. Your presence will be inhibiting to them and affect their "feelings" about your house as a potential purchase.

As for the cat, stick it in a cat carrier and take it with you when you leave for the showings. I did this with our dog when we were selling our house a few years ago. Every time they called wanting to show the house, I loaded up the kids (4 yrs and 7 yrs) and the dog (1 yr old- so still really a puppy) into the car and drove around, or took them to the park for an hour. It was really annoying when the showing ran late (or they ended up being no-shows)... but it happens, so be ready to experience it and try not to let it get to you.

  • Report This

What to Do with Kids and Cats While Showing House (7)


answers from Milwaukee on

I would tell your realtor that there will be NO SHOWING during nap time, it is still your house even if you are trying to sell it. Also anytime that there is a showing when the babysitter is there I would say no. People that are house hunting will find a time to see the house it they are REALLY interested in the house.

When hubby and I were looking at houses we saw two where the people did not leave (both had small children), I felt horrible because the kids were crying, screaming and upset about not being able to nap... so we rushed the viewing and since it was rushed could not make a good decision about saying 'yes we want the house' so we passed on it.

Regarding the cat, when we saw houses our realtor mentioned that there is a cat (also think there was a note on the door to remind the realtor) we did not mind but we have two cats. The cat did follow us around for awhile then disappeared. I would just leave a note on the door(s) saying that there is a cat(s) inside, but is/are well tempered. IF your cat hisses or is not well tempered around strangers then I would crate the cat and either bring with you or leave created in a room with a note that there is a cat in a crate so ignore the meowing/hissing and feel free to check out the room.

  • Report This

    (Video) How to Have fun in a Hurricane!

What to Do with Kids and Cats While Showing House (8)


answers from Minneapolis on

You can set 'no show' times for your house! Tell your realtor that the house is off limits during 'x' time, and stick to it. You shouldn't be there when the house is shown, it should be clean and empty when the prospective buyers arrive.

As for the cat, leave it be. He will likely hide or be pretty scarce when people show up anyway. Just put a note on the door explaining there is a housecat inside, and leave it at that. make sure the litter box is clean and there is no smell, that is a HUGE turnoff. We have two cats, so I understand. :)

  • Report This

What to Do with Kids and Cats While Showing House (9)


answers from San Antonio on

I had similar issue. A couple of times, my house was showed during naptime. When they called to tell me about the showing, I'd tell them "Well my son will be napping then." and they'd let the realtor know but they still came by to see the house. The people just peeked in the room and I hung around outside in the backyard reading my book (it was summer in Texas). But in this situation, it might depend on the comfortableness of the babysitter, his/her age too, as to whether or not your house is shown while he/she is there. Talk to the babysitter about it.

My first thought was "where's the nearest chuck-e-cheese?" because that's free to enter (warm) and a few bucks if you actually play a game. Slide/climbing area are free. I got a coupon and spent $20 and now have tokens out the whazoo. They'll last me months! Wish it was warmer. I'd say just go for a walk and put the cats in a crate in the garage or something. And yes, put a post-it to let someone know that there's a cat in a cage in a certain room. Just so they don't jump if the cat meows or in case they are highly allergic.

Often, they give you a two hour window. When they call about wanting to view it, you could ask them to give you a 5 minute heads up, which they should have no problem doing. Just explain that you have two kids and nowhere to go, so you're going to drive around town or go walk at the mall, and you'd prefer to do that for 20 minutes while they view the house instead of for two hours of the window they've given you. Do you have a Chick-Fil-A? Another place with an indoor playground. Won't cost you anything unless the 3 yr old HAS to have a snack.


How do I keep my cat entertained while at work? ›

Here are 10 of the best ways to keep your cat entertained while you're out of the house.
  1. Food puzzles and toys. ...
  2. Cardboard boxes. ...
  3. Paper and paper bags. ...
  4. Cat specific furniture. ...
  5. A room with a view. ...
  6. Fish tank fun. ...
  7. Another feline friend. ...
  8. Set up a special space.

How do you entertain a cat indoors? ›

How to Keep Indoor Cats Entertained and Stimulated
  1. Cat chat time. ...
  2. Play chasing. ...
  3. Change up toys on a regular basis. ...
  4. Fetch. ...
  5. Games for cats now available on your tablet. ...
  6. Light play. ...
  7. Create places for your cat to hide. ...
  8. Entertaining stay at home cats.
9 Aug 2016

How can I make my house fun for my cat? ›

Creating Indoor Fun for Cats
  1. Provide safe resting and hiding environments. Hiding is a natural coping behavior for cats. ...
  2. Provide a place to scratch. Scratching is a natural behavior for cats. ...
  3. Appeal to the hunter in your cat. ...
  4. Examples of inexpensive toys include:
  5. Safe and secure resources. ...
  6. Olfactory environment.

How long can cats be left alone? ›

Most felines will be perfectly content being left alone for up to 8 hours while you're at work. As long as fresh water is available, some cats can be left alone for up to 24 hours. However, longer or more frequent periods of time away, such as full days or nights away from home can be more disruptive.

Do cats run away if they are unhappy? ›

You may be worried that your cat has something wrong with them or that they are unhappy with you, however, this is not usually true. Cats, unlike dogs, actually run away due to some factors that are in their genetics.

Can a cat be left alone for 4 days? ›

We'd recommend against it. Even if you have an automatic food dispenser, plenty of water, and tons of litter trays, 4 days is too long to leave your cat alone. They may run out of food, start going to the bathroom outside of their litter tray because it's dirty or become ill from the stress of being left alone.

Do cats get lonely when left alone? ›

Regardless of their reputation, cats do get lonely when they are left unattended for long periods of time. Research proves that cats are social beings that form strong bonds with their owners.

Should I leave lights on for my cat? ›

As we've established leaving a light on for your kitten at night or any time really, isn't necessary. In fact, keeping your house dark during the night will help your kitty develop a sleeping routine. This way you'll find that your kitten won't be seeking your attention and disrupting your dreams.

Do indoor cats get lonely? ›

Because of the attachments they form, the answer is yes; cats can feel lonely! While each kitty has a unique personality and needs, the following signs could indicate a lonely cat: Destructive behavior. Loss or increase in appetite.

Do cats get bored alone? ›

Even with the convenience of a litter box and an endless supply of food, cats left alone for long stretches of time, day after day, can suffer from loneliness, boredom and even separation anxiety. Indoor cats left alone with no stimulation or environmental enrichment are more likely to become bored or lonely.

What smells do cats like? ›

If you want some cat-friendly air fresheners, there are certain smells that cats love. “Cats love the smell of catnip, olives, non-citrus fruit for the most part and plants like honeysuckle,” Dr. Evans said. A lot of cats like the scent of valerian root, “which induces a similar euphoria to catnip,” Hudson said.

Why does my female cat pee on my clothes? ›

No one knows for sure why cats do this, but they may not like the smell of the laundry or the smell or location of their litter box. They may be reacting to stress, which is often the result of change in the home, like the addition of a new baby, new furniture or a move to a new home.

Should I leave toys out for my cat at night? ›

If your cat isn't tempted, it's a lot more likely he'll sleep. If you have the rare cat who plays quietly, you can leave the toys out. Sleep alone. Many of us can't imagine a night spent away from our furry friends, but if those friends are keeping us up at night, one choice is to sleep in a separate room.

Can a cat be happy in one room? ›

And unlike dogs, cats actually prefer smaller spaces and tend to find hideaways and corners to retreat when they need their space. Although cats may need a little less, a cat can happily live in one room only if they have everything they need.

Do cats miss their owners? ›

Quite often, when owners go away, their cats seem also to disappear. Whether they are hiding or are having their own vacation, disappearing can be a sign that a cat is distressed and misses their owner. Illness. Some cats become unwell with the anxiety of their owner's absence and the change in their daily routine.

How do cats like to be held? ›

Some cats are happy when you lift them from underneath, with your arms linked together to form a cradle of sorts, while others prefer to have their chest held against your torso, with their front paws resting on your shoulders or chest and their hind legs held securely under their back end.

How do cats recognize their owners? ›

Cats don't tend to rely on the way we look to recognise us, preferring to use their other senses to identify us (such as smells and sounds). Dogs, on the other hand, do recognise our faces and expressions.

How do you tell if your cat is mad at you? ›

Signs of an Angry Cat
  1. Growling.
  2. Avoiding their favorite toy.
  3. Hiding and refusing to come out.
  4. Ears are flattened back and sticking out.
  5. Biting when you try to pet them.
  6. Twitching tail.
  7. Refusing favorite meal.
  8. Purring*

Will my cat come back home if I let it outside? ›

Let them explore in their own time and don't panic if they hop over a fence, or go further than you feel comfortable, most cats come back after a few minutes, at which point you can give them a tasty treat to encourage their return.

Do cats return home after running away? ›

Yes, cats can return home many days, weeks, months, and even years after they wandered off or were lost. According to the Lost Pet Research project, there were reports of cats traveling 50-80 miles in 2.5 years, 38 miles in 6 months, 30 miles in 10 days, and 20 miles in 21 days. So if your cat is lost, keep up hope.

What will a cat do during a home inspection? ›

Take Care of Your Pets

Consider taking them with you during the inspection or placing them in a kennel or secured area of the home. If cats or other pets are present, ensure the inspector knows this so they are not let out of the home.

How long does it take for a cat to settle in a new home? ›

This is usually about 4 weeks, but could be longer for some shy and timid cats. Whilst your cat is settling in, they may exhibit behaviours including: Hiding. Not interacting.

Should cats be confined at night? ›

Should I keep my cat in at night? Cats Protection recommends that you keep your cat in at night to keep them safe. Increased risks during night time include: Road traffic injuries and fatalities.

How long does it take a cat to adjust to new home? ›

In general, for a happy and healthy cat, it should take no longer than a week or a week and a half to get used to a new home. We will need to encourage the cat when adjusting to a new owner or home, but they should feel comfortable easily enough. Some cats, especially those with trauma, make take longer.

What do you do with pets during house showings? ›

Board your pets while you show your home, especially on weekends and during open houses. Maybe ask a friend or neighbor if your pets can stay with them briefly during showings, or take them for a long walk. If the pets must remain home, ask your realtor to give you ample notice before showings.

What do you do with litter box when showing house? ›

Keep litter trays clean

Before each showing, clean your cat's litter trays or place them out of sight in a garage or backyard storage area. Using an automatic and self-cleaning litter tray can help because you'll have less cleaning to do before each showing.

What do I do with my dog during an open house? ›

Take them to work with you for the day (if this is an option). Hire a dog walker to remove them for showings. Ask a close neighbor to take your pet during showings. Completely move out of your home and take them with you.

Should I let my new cat roam the house? ›

DO NOT let a kitten outside. Never allow a cat outside until it is thoroughly familiar and comfortable in your own home. This may take two to three months. Some adult cats will try to return to their old territory, usually unsuccessfully.

Will my cat come back if I let him outside? ›

Most will take their time and explore very slowly and carefully. Let them explore in their own time and don't panic if they hop over a fence, or go further than you feel comfortable, most cats come back after a few minutes, at which point you can give them a tasty treat to encourage their return.

How can you tell if a cat likes you? ›

Here are some common signs that your cat loves you:
  • Slow Blinking. Eyes are said to be the windows to the soul. ...
  • Headbutting. Your cat may bump their head against you or rub their cheeks against you to show affection. ...
  • Grooming. ...
  • Kneading. ...
  • Showing Their Belly. ...
  • Meowing. ...
  • Purring. ...
  • Greeting You at the Door.
1 Feb 2022

Is locking a cat in a room abuse? ›

Is Locking A Cat In A Room Abuse? It is cruel to confine your cat to a single room for no apparent reason. It's also cruel if a working cat mom confines her cat in a room while she's at work so that her house doesn't get messed up. All living creatures, whether people or animals, require freedom.

Should I lick my cat? ›

No, you should never lick your cat. They will feel confused if you do this as your saliva has proteins and chemicals which are different from their saliva. Also, they will not appreciate it as you will mess up their fur.

Do cats like the dark? ›

The answer to this question comes in two parts: yes, cats love the dark, so you don't need to leave the light on for them. But no, they don't have superhero-like night vision.

Why do cats meow so much in a new house? ›

Some cats have a difficult time adjusting to a new home. You may notice excessive meowing if you have just moved to a new home or have just brought a cat into your home. It is normal, especially for an adult cat, to be disoriented and unsure in a new environment.

Should I let my new cat hide under the bed? ›

If your new pet wants to hide, let them, and give them some space! Never force them to come out, and always leave them alone to explore in their own time. Cats are very territorial, so they will feel a little unsettled until they can establish that this is their home.

What is the normal amount of hissing in introducing a cat? ›

Again, some hissing when they see each other is normal so don't be alarmed. Some light swatting is also common. Separate them if the hissing doesn't die down after 1 or 2 minutes or if there is any sign of threat (swatting with force, chasing, screaming, ears flattened, etc.). Try again when the cats seem to be calm.


1. Interesting facts about Cats | Educational Video for Kids.
(Happy Learning English)
2. We will not see our cats ever again
(SIS vs BRO)
3. Best Cats Work From Home News Bloopers
(News Be Funny)
4. Kid-E-Cats | Best Cartoons Compilation | Best cartoons for Kids 2021
5. 44 Cats | 30 MINUTES of Buffycats against Winston
(Rainbow Junior - English)
6. My Cat HATES my New Kitten - Help? How to Introduce Cats!
(Kitten School)
Top Articles
Latest Posts
Article information

Author: Wyatt Volkman LLD

Last Updated: 08/06/2023

Views: 5983

Rating: 4.6 / 5 (46 voted)

Reviews: 85% of readers found this page helpful

Author information

Name: Wyatt Volkman LLD

Birthday: 1992-02-16

Address: Suite 851 78549 Lubowitz Well, Wardside, TX 98080-8615

Phone: +67618977178100

Job: Manufacturing Director

Hobby: Running, Mountaineering, Inline skating, Writing, Baton twirling, Computer programming, Stone skipping

Introduction: My name is Wyatt Volkman LLD, I am a handsome, rich, comfortable, lively, zealous, graceful, gifted person who loves writing and wants to share my knowledge and understanding with you.