We know how to care for cats, because caring for cats is all we do.
Gwen Sparling has tons of ideas on a daily basis… some fantastic, some not, and some maybe even a little bizarre. When Gwen came up with the idea for Camp Kitty, it seemed practical and doable.
When her cat, Birdie, was diagnosed with a urinary tract infection a few days before Gwen was to go on vacation, she had to think fast. Birdie needed medication, so she stayed at her vet’s office. When Gwen returned to pick up Birdie, the staff raved about how wonderful she was (um, yeah, she’s awesome).
This interaction made Gwen think: her dogs had the option of going to one of many top-notch boarding kennels. Dogs have tons of options, actually, but that wasn’t the case for Birdie. Her only option was the vet. Why not start a boarding kennel for cats? With the support of her family, Gwen soon began the journey to start Atlanta’s first cats-only boarding kennel.
Camp Kitty opened in June of 2009 in an unassuming wooden house in Scottdale, Georgia. There was no grand opening celebration or fanfare. There weren’t even any cats! Then, as the fear and doubt began to appear, right in the midst of the first “what the hell did I get myself into?,” the phone rang. Camp Kitty’s first customers came by way of a lady who had just moved to Atlanta from Hawaii. Her purebred Siamese babies, Kili and Hobbes, needed a break from staying in a hotel room with a loud and grabby 18-month-old child.
That first Thanksgiving, Camp Kitty housed the most we’d ever had at one time – 18 cats – which was exciting and scary even though we weren’t at full capacity of 21. By 2012, word was getting around and the momentum began to build. Camp Kitty had at least one cat boarding every day. Employees were hired, and we exceeded capacity for every major holiday. Things were going great, just in time for the growing pains to begin. We needed more space in a more modern and efficient building.
In the summer of 2016, Gwen signed a lease for our current location, with twice the space! When Camp Kitty first opened, we didn’t really know what we were doing; we thought a cat boarding kennel just needed kennels, a table, sink, and a fridge. Experience quickly taught us that a kennel should not be housed in a building made completely of wood. Our new mantra at every step of the new installation became: “Is this pee proof?”
At Camp Kitty, our staff fully understands and caters to the unique needs of cats. Our staff is well-trained in cat behavior and health. Camp Kitty is a place where cats can play or relax in a fun, stress-free environment. Our huge enclosures (what we refer to as cabins) allow our guests to jump and stretch and be up high. Cats who are more active and sociable get to come out of their cabins to walk around the boarding area. Learn more about the cat boarding experience.
We are members of the International Boarding & Pet Services Association (IBPSA) and our staff are Pet Tech CPR Certified. We are also active volunteers with Lifeline Animal Project and foster cats with Atlanta Animal Rescue Friends.