She is amazing! We came home from a week's vacation to happy cats. In fact, Gretel is so good that I'm not sure our cats missed us very much. Timmy (our grumpy cat) sat by the door and waited for Gretel for days after we got back. We were able to relax on vacation knowing the cats were in the best possible hands. Gretel even took pictures and sent us a little note every day.
- Becky D.
I have been housesitting for friends and neighbors since I was a child, happily filling the role of caring for beloved pets. I am continually sought out because I am responsible and have a gentle presence that can set both humans and animals at ease.
As the daughter of a veterinarian, my passion for felines was given freedom to flourish in a home brimming with animals. I grew up with canines, birds, rodents, fish, arachnids, crustaceans, and even a calf or two, but I was always most in sync with the cats.
I started this business because I experience so much anxiety prior to a trip away from my own cats that I recognized the need to provide a stress-free alternative for others. Cats are habitual and territorial, so I try to disrupt their environment as little as possible so that you are sure to return to a happy and pampered cat.
I also volunteer part-time at a humane society where I worked for five years as a veterinary assistant before stepping down to cat sit full-time. It is incredibly rewarding, overwhelming and intensely sad to care for the many cats cruelly disposed of or simply ignored by our society. As a result, I'm very passionate about spaying and neutering to help ease the overpopulation and needless suffering of homeless cats.
I'm so lucky to have relationships with some of the most loving and skilled cat care givers in Chicago through my work in animal rescue. I may ask you and your cats to meet one of my "sittersubs" during busy times, or if your kitties need two visits per day. I only use subs who I've worked with directly and who I know to be reliable and devoted to your cat's well being. My subs are also covered under my insurance and bonding.
With City Kitty you can relax and know that we're catering to your cat's physical and emotional needs while you are away!
- Gretel Ulyshen
City Kitty founder, owner, and primary sitter
and the best caretaker I have ever met. She truly cares for animals and it shows in the time and attention she gives my kiddos. It's comforting that she sends texts, videos and photos daily when I travel. Gretel gives them a great deal of affection and play time, and they are incredibly happy when I get home. One of my guys is deathly afraid of people and she is the only one who can get him out of his shell. It's been amazing to see. I am so grateful to have found City Kitty. Caretakers like Gretel are truly a rarity!
- Jackie P.
and goes above and beyond what is expected every time. Notes on how he ate, how he acted, how he played (sometimes with the new toys she brought for him!), and anything and everything in between. She treats every animal she encounters as an individual, and her experience working in a cat shelter helps her take into account any special needs or histories that have been conveyed to her. All in all, she's the best.
- Steven M.
It's so great to know that I don't need to worry about my pets while I'm away. I have two semi-feral cats, and Gretel and her band of merry cat sitters have always taken great care of them even over the holidays. They give lovely updates when necessary and last Christmas, they even gave the cats toys to play with (and pretty much immediately lose forever). Gretel even keeps up with their human socializing! I also have a parakeet, and they kindly take care of her too. They're the best!
- Catherina K.
I have older cats with special needs. One has hyperthyroidism plus insulin-dependent diabetes and the other has several food allergies, but I can travel with absolute confidence knowing that City Kitty will not only take care of their medical needs but they also have FUN!
- Beth M.