Choosing a Cat – Are you a Match for a Cat?

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 11,221
    Learn the importance of a two-way relationship with your new furry friend.

    Gary Powell: Hi! I am Gary Powell from the Cat Fanciers' Association. Today, I am talking about how to know if a cat is the right pet for you.

    The decision to add a cat to your life is a serious one, and it starts with you. There are several questions you should ask yourself.

    Is your household quiet or active? Some cats thrive on lots of play time and activity. These energetic animals can become bored in an extremely quiet home or constantly beg to go outside. Other cats with the more placid temperament will love a calm and quiet home.

    Do you travel a lot? Two cats can keep each other company. If you have a good friend or pet sitter who will play with the cats while you are away, in addition to feeding and keeping litter boxes clean, this makes a difference. If travel is constant then owning a cat may not be the right decision for you.

    Are you at home usually during the day or is your schedule unpredictable? Although cats like routine, most will adapt to somewhat changeable schedule as long as you plan ahead and put out some dried snacks when supper will be late.

    Do you have a safe environment for your cat? Children coming and going, leaving doors open is a dangerous situation for a cat, unless you have a playroom or enclosed porch.

    Balcony railings in a high rise building are also potentially dangerous. With screen doors and supervision, apartment living can be made safe for your cat.

    Are you ready for an animal who could live to be 15 to 20 years of age? No one can totally predict the future, but within reason the decision to accept a cat into your life should be with an expectation of keeping us companion for as long as he or she lives.

    About one-third of cat owning households say their cat chose them. Stray or abandoned cats often come to the door for food and protection. Before selecting a cat, be practical. If anyone in your household is allergic to cats, it's probably not a good idea.

    There are a few breeds thought to be hypo-allergenic, but scientific work is still in progress. Keep in mind, your community rules, are there limit laws in your community? Are pets allowed in your condominium? Does your landlord allow cats? And finally, consider the expenses. Can you afford the expense of owning a cat, veterinary care, the cost of good quality food, supplies like litter box and litter, grooming tools, cat tree, cozy bed, scratching posts, a good travel carrier, cost of a pet sitter.

    Those are just some of the things to consider before determining, if owning a cat is the right choice for you.