Deciding to have a pet cat is just half of the story. The other half is choosing the type of cat that’s just right for you. There are a lot of questions to answer, such as should you get a kitten or a grown cat? Should you choose a cat with short hair or a cat with long hair? Which breed or species? Male or female? What color? How many cats should you choose?
The answers are purely subjective, of course, conforming to your personal tastes. If you are undecided, you can look at some cat pictures online and see what takes your fancy, or you can visit a pet shop or animal shelter.
Another thing to consider in choosing a cat is your own lifestyle. Do you have enough time to care for a young kitten? Would you enjoy playing with it and devoting time to training it? Do you simply want to have a cat around as a companion? These kinds of questions will help you decide if you want a cat that’s docile or active, purebred or mixed-bred, furry or short haired (long-haired cats will require a lot of grooming), and so on.
Here are some considerations to think about:
– Kittens require more care and attention than adult cats. Kittens are also more playful and energetic. You will need to take the time in their early years to play with them and train them so that in a few years they are the perfect companion. They are also likely to change in both appearance and personality as they grow older, so what you see now may not be what you will get after a few years. If a cat’s looks are important to you, consider getting an adult cat or at least a cat eight months or older.
– If you want a cat that’s quiet and calm, get an adult cat instead of a young one.
– If there are little children at home, be sure to teach them the proper ways to hold and pet a cat. Young children, even with the best intentions, tend to be rough on pets, although cats are very tough, and nothing can bring as much joy as cute little kittens to children. Also, keep in mind, that no matter what pet you get, children should be supervised around pets until they know how to properly treat them.
– Keep in mind that the whole family will be involved when you get a pet cat. If anyone has allergies to cats, you may need to rethink your plan of getting a cat, or you can get a cat that has been genetically modified to take away the allergen that makes many people allergic. These cats are rare and very expensive though.
– Cats are like people with their own personalities. Even sibling cats are different from one another. If possible, choose a cat with a personality that will fit into your household. Ask its previous owner, or the pet shop owner, or the worker at the animal shelter if the cat you wish to get is calm and easy-going, or if it pretty much prefers to be left alone. Friendly cats will tolerate being handled, while others don’t like to be handled as much. If you train a cat while it’s young to be picked up a lot, it will definitely make a big difference when the cat is grown. Active cats like to explore around (hence they need more living space), while lazy, Garfield types will prefer to eat and nap all day.
– Cat personality is partially influenced by breed. Exotic breeds like Bengal cats are very active, Persian cats are usually calm and quiet, and Siamese cats tend to make a lot of meowing noises. If you want a purebred cat, read up on this topic. Also be prepared to spend more money for its purchase and be aware that purebreds generally don’t live as long as other cats. Also be aware that some cat breeds are predisposed to certain medical conditions as well. If you are not picky about breed, go for mixed-breed cats. They tend to be healthier than purebreds.
– Special-needs cats require more attention, but taking care of them can be a very rewarding experience. A cat that is deaf or blind is able to give as much affection and companionship as any other cat. Similarly, cats that are older or that are suffering from some life-long illness may just be what brings more love and tenderness into your home. If you decide to get a special-needs cat, be sure you can provide the extra attention and medical care they need.
- I recently got three cute kittens a little over a year ago. I went to the local animal shelter and was shocked at how many cute little kittens they had. There were many more kittens at the animal shelter than at the local pet store and they were about 75% cheaper as well. Going to a local animal shelter not only can save you a lot of money, but many times you can have an incredible selection as well. Also, you get that warm fuzzy feeling of saving an animal that may have been put to death otherwise. If cats are not spayed and neutered, they can breed quite rapidly. I chose three cute kittens from the same litter, the two males were orange and white and black and white, and the female was a calico. If possible, choosing kittens from the same litter will ensure them a much higher chance of getting along with each other throughout their lives. Getting these kittens all together from the same litter was one of the best choices I ever made. They are super cute, get along well with each other and since I had plenty of time to train them, they are very well behaved and love to be around people. They also love to play with each other, so I don’t have to play with them as much if I don’t feel like it. Another thing to keep in mind is that two female cats not from the same litter will have a much higher chance of not getting along with each other.