Choosing a cat is not something to be taken lightly as cat breeds all differ greatly in personalities and needs
Choosing a cat is all about homework, homework, homework! To ensure that both you and your new companion have a mutually beneficial relationship (your cat will likely be a part of your family for 15+ years!), you have to do a little bit of research before you decide on a particular cat.
Some of the important things to consider before choosing a cat:
- What are your reasons for wanting a cat?
This is probably one of the more important questions and definitely the first question that you should ask. Are you getting a cat as a companion or as a status symbol? If you are looking for a companion, then you are on the right track, but if you are looking to own a certain cat breed because of the status associated with it, you should perhaps reconsider.
- Can you afford a cat?
- Do you want an adult cat or a kitten?
You need to decide whether you have the time to commit to a kitten, or whether you want an adult with an already established character. Should you decide on an adult, you will have to consider the age as well. Things to think about when deciding whether you want an adult or a kitten
- One cat or more?
You have to think about whether you are able to give one cat the attention it needs and deserve, or whether it would be better to get a companion.
Advice on having multiple cats
- Male vs. Female
Much depends on the way the cat is raised and treated, so this point is a matter of personal preference.
Male or Female? Which is better?
- Pedigree vs. Mixed breed
Although the initial cost to acquire a pedigree cat will be more than for a mixed breed, the other costs will be the same. As mentioned before, much depends on the way the cat is raised and treated, so a pedigree might not be more affectionate than a mixed breed.
Pedigree, non-pedigree or mixed breed?
- Indoor vs. Outdoor
Will your cat be an indoor cat or an outdoor cat? Certain pedigree breeds are only suitable to be indoor cats, so you will have to ensure that there is enough entertainment to ensure that the cat does not become bored.
- Feeding and Grooming
Some pedigree breeds require specialty foods which might become expensive, so take this into consideration when choosing a cat. You will have to spend time grooming your cat, whether it is daily with a long hair breed or once a week with a short hair breed, so make sure that you are willing to dedicate the time.
Cat Food & Nutrition
Cat Care & Grooming
To brush or not to brush? Take a look at the different cat hair types
- Neutering and Spaying
Besides for the one-time cost involved in neutering or spaying a cat, this is something you need to consider as not neutering or spaying your cat could have undesirable consequences.
More info on neutering and spaying when choosing a cat
- Where are you going to get the cat?
If you have decided on a pedigree breed, research breeders and get references. If you decide to go to a rescue shelter, take your time sitting and playing with the cats or kittens.
Investigate these places
- Other pets
You have to consider your other pets and whether they will be tolerant of a new cat or kitten. It is very unpleasant having to get rid of a new pet should things not work out.
Advice on integrating a new pet
- Children and Cats
If you have young children, you need to make sure that they understand not to bother a cat or a kitten whilst it is asleep, and the correct way to handle a cat. You can avoid a lot of nasty situations by doing so.
Cats and children need to have supervised playtime
- Health Considerations
When choosing a cat, you need to consider whether you are willing to spend the time and the money caring for a cat that might later on in its life develop a serious health issue.
- When to get a cat
Take into consideration your personal circumstances - if you have just had a baby or you are recovering from an illness, is not a good time to look at getting a cat.
Still a bit unsure? Then go to MyCatSite.com - The Best Source For Cat Information. Now with free printable pages on Cat-Safe and Cat-Toxic Houseplants and featuring Ask the Cat Lady!Choosing a cat? Take a look at the Popular Cat Breeds