Thinking about adopting a cat?   Leave a comment

If you are thinking about adopting a cat, you are not alone.  Studies have concluded that cats are the most popular pet in America, giving some truth to the cat owner’s anthem, “Cats rule while dogs drool.” 

Cats are very clean animals and they have no need to leave the home.  While they tend to be less work than dogs, they still need lots of love and attention. This care is needed for many years,  as a cat’s average life span is about fifteen years.

Here are a few things to consider when choosing a cat.

Male vs. Female:

If your cat is spayed or neutered the sex is not a big issue.  Males tend to be more outgoing than females. Probably the most important issue is to adopt a cat with a personality that complements yours.

Kitten or Adult:

Everybody loves kittens, and most people are more inclined to adopt a kitten.  But that little fur ball can be challenging.  Kitties love to stick their noses in everything, climb the curtains, jump up the shelves or hide in drawers.  They want to play all the time and the first three to eight months can be a real test of our patience.  On the other hand, adult cats already know how to behave in a house and can easily adapt to a new family.

One or More Cats:

If adopting kittens, adopting two is a good idea.  They will have a friend to play with, and burn off that deep reserve of energy.  They won’t be afraid or lonely while the family is away, and they can help each other to figure out the household routine.  Cats adopted together tend to be very close.  Perhaps the best reason to adopt more than one cat is the entertainment.  Watching two feline buddies playing is much better than watching TV.

Adopting a cat, like any pet is a big decision, and deserves a great deal of thought.  People tend to make common mistakes when adopting a cat.

Adoption by impulse:

Unlike a shirt or a toy, a pet is for life.  A cat will quickly become a member of the family and will be heartbroken if separated from the family. 

Cost of Care:

Cats can be adopted very inexpensively, and they don’t eat that much.  But owners should budget for short-term and long-term care.  Some of the expenses are grooming, boarding, preventive medical care and emergency care.  

Sterilization:

When adopting from a rescue organization, owners typically have to sign a contract promising to have the cat spayed or neutered.   Despite all the advantages of sterilization, many pet owners are reluctant to carry it out.  This refusal is based on erroneous information or subjective perceptions of the reality of domesticated animals.  Just remember the risks are minimal and the benefits many.

When adopting a cat consider your local shelter and rescue organizations.

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