Mike and Susan Nocket saw luxury boarding facilities for dogs popping up around the country but didn’t see many opportunities for cats, so they decided to take matters into their own hands.
In 2008, the Evergreen Cat Lodge opened for business at the former site of the Inn at Soda Creek in Evergreen. The lodge offers 32 rooms for boarding guests, a grooming room, reception room and two service areas.
The lodge offers different levels of accommodations for cats, from economy rooms all the way to VIP suites. Each room is uniquely decorated with homey touches like afghans, and arm chairs, and some even have electric fireplaces.
The Nockets live on site. Half of the building is their living quarters, so someone is always around to check on the cats.
“We decided to open the kind of place we’d like to board our cats,” Mike Nocket explained as she talked about the boarding facility’s inspiration.
The Nockets have been cat lovers and involved in cat rescue for years. Now, their facility can board special-needs cats, and houses a few adoptable cats and kittens through the Evergreen Animal Protective League.
When they started pursuing their dream nearly 15 years ago, people told Mike and Susan it would never work. Years later, Susan says they have stayed busy and have repeat customers.
“We’ve had very loyal clients,” she said. “We’ve been really lucky with the supportive community.”
New manager Jenny Kesler has a background in animal care and saw the job posting online to work at the lodge.
“My first reaction to reading it was: is this my dream job?” she said.
As a cat lover and certified vet tech, Kesler fits right in at the boarding facility.
Mike said that sometimes he has customers with bad prior boarding experiences try the lodge. He has seen cat boarding often be an afterthought at dog-boarding facilities or just groupings of small cages.
“We encourage people with bad prior experiences to come take a tour,” he said.
The owners said after their feline guests settle in, they rarely hear complaints about the accommodations.
The lodge, licensed by the Colorado Department of Agriculture, Animal Industry Division, is located on nine acres and has plenty of “cat TV” to watch out the windows, with wildlife like elk, deer and a local wild turkey flock.
To find out more about boarding at the Evergreen Cat Lodge, visit evergreencatlodge.com.