As the saying goes “a house is not a home without a cat”. This might not be true for everyone, but a home shared with one or more cats is definitely more cozy. This could be explained by their willingness to snuggle, or their engaged affection. Whatever the case may be, a warm, purring kitty is simply wonderful.
With more than 90 million pet cats in homes nationwide, we are in full acknowledgment of all the amazement, joy, and contentment they bring. However, there is a difference between wanting one and being truly ready for a cat.
Many prospective cat owners don’t realize they’ve been wanting one until they lay eyes on the kitty they’re meant for. While a spontaneous adoption can be successful, it is best not to act on impulse alone.
Domestic felines can live on average between 10-20 years. While it’s understandable to be smitten by a helpless, curious kitten, they grow up fast and cat owners must be prepared to provide for their cat throughout all the life stages.
The Long View
When asking yourself if you are truly ready for a cat, we recommend fleshing out the following details:
- Can I afford to pay for a cat’s health care needs that may include preventive care, vaccinations, dental care, parasite prevention, spay/neuter surgery, microchip, and emergency care?
- Am I allowed to keep a pet cat in my rental? Am I prepared to pay a pet deposit or monthly pet rent?
- Do I have other household pets that are not ready for a cat the way I might be?
- Do I live with others that may have an allergic reaction to cat hair and dander?
- Do I live with children that could play too rough for a kitten or cat?
- Am I prepared to cat-proof my entire house/apartment?
- Do I have the financial wherewithal to replace any furniture that gets scratched up, destroyed, or sprayed? Can I provide adequate scratching, climbing and play-hunting opportunities at home?
- Do I have the right place just for a cat’s bathroom needs that is out of the way and discreet?
- Do I live alone and travel regularly? If so, you must consider cat boarding or pet sitting in your absence. Remember, cats do get lonely and require daily socialization, exercise and close human interaction.
- Is my yard safe and fully enclosed? Consider that indoor-only cats typically live longer than those allowed to roam. A Catio is the perfect compromise for indoor-only cats.
Getting Ready for a Cat
While cats have a reputation for being “low-maintenance”, that doesn’t mean they have fewer requirements.
To get ready for a cat adoption, prospective cat owners should acquire the following supplies:
- Age-appropriate food
- Feeding station with stainless steel or ceramic water/food bowls
- Water fountain
- Litter box and litter (remember, the rule is 1 box per cat, plus 1 more)
- Scratching posts
- Crate or carrier
- Collar and ID tag
- Grooming tools, such as nail clipper, brush, toothbrush and cat toothpaste
Here For You
Newly adopted cats should have a wellness exam shortly after they are brought home. We can establish a baseline for long term health and wellness, and direct their path toward a long, happy life.
Still have questions regarding cat adoption? Brodie Animal Hospital is always here for you!