If you’re on a journey to meet your new feline friend through a cat adoption, a local shelter or even a local vet act as a great resource. Cat adoption is so rewarding as there are many kittens and adult cats who need a forever home, but it’s important, before becoming a pet parent, to think through your decision and ensure you can care for your cat through its whole life.
Cats of Carroll Gardens have it made with a vet clinic such as The Vet Set! Learn more about cats and what it takes to care for them in today’s post!
We know — cats are so cute and cuddly, all while being independent and having a personality like no other! And while it’s easy to be in a pet store or around your friend’s cat and want to decide right then and there that you’re getting a cat, it’s important to take pause because really this is a life-changing decision.
We’ve explored in other posts what it really takes to become a pet parent but let’s consider a few things before you take the leap!
If you’re wanting to get a cat just so you can plaster their picture all over Instagram and cross your fingers that they’ll make you insta-famous, maybe you should rethink pet ownership.
While we never want to say that a pet isn’t a good idea, caring for one and liking the idea of one are two totally different things — especially in the stage of life you’re in.
Rescue kitties and all adopted pets need stability, so if you’re in a band or live a lifestyle where you aren’t home a lot, it may not be an ideal time. Cats are more independent and like doing things on their own schedule, but they still crave connections with their human!
It’s important to consider where you’re living and what kind of living situation you’re in because this can greatly affect the quality of life for your cat.
Are you living alone in a city like Brooklyn? Great! Cats are the perfect brownstone pet! It is important that you’re diligent about keeping them as indoor cats because the city isn’t a great place for cats to get loose!
This is one factor that a lot of people look past when it comes to adopting a cat. While sharing space with working professionals or another person you know and trust is one thing, but if you’re in a college house with six other people, this puts your cat at risk — not everyone will love and care for your cat like you. Plus, there are the horror stories of people feeding cats beer or drugs or playing party music late into the night. This is just not safe for cats.
If you’re in a partnership, you also have to consider if you would be able to manage a cat should you break up — it’s maybe something you think would never happen but it happens and you need to have a plan for all your pets.
At the end of the day, it’s not talking anyone out of cat adoption, it’s creating an awareness and a reality that rescue cats, and all cats in general, need a safe, nurturing place to live and its a responsibility that shouldn’t be taken lightly.
Now that we’ve gotten the wheels turning a bit, let’s look more closely at some things to know about cats before adopting!
We all are impartial to our favorite breeds of cat’s — hello Maine Coons — but it’s important to know that shelters are overflowing with cats who need loving, forever homes. So, finding a cat that you vibe with won’t be hard. Go down to your local pet shelter today and play with some kitties!
The average life expectancy of a cat is 13 to 17 but cats have been known to live well into their 20s, so it’s important to understand this before adopting a cat. Will you be able to care for your cat and everything that comes with it — vet visits, potential illness, food, etc — throughout their whole life?
If this seems like forever, perhaps rescue a senior kitty or wait until you’re more ready.
Because there are feral cats and cats who don’t have a home and are living on the streets for a variety of reasons, the cat population gets out of hand because a majority of them aren’t spayed or neutered. And, since cats can breed up to three times a year, it is vital to get them fixed. So, do the responsible thing and get your feline spayed or neutered.
Yes, this seems like common sense and it’s not only important to provide your cat with a litter box, but that you keep it in an accessible area in a place where your cat can always find it.
With that in mind, remember: Cats will not use a dirty litter box so as a part of being a cat parent you’ll need to tend to the litter box daily to keep it tidy and disinfect it weekly.
If you’ve ever had cats before, you know that if you sleep one minute past their morning feeding time, they’ll be pacing, pawing, and crying out for you until you decide to get up and feed them — cats know!
Try and keep things as consistent as possible to provide structure to their day and stability to their lives.
Many times, plant people are also cat people so it’s important to know that there are a lot of plants that are harmful and toxic to your cat. Some common plants include:
Before adopting a cat, check your plants and remove any that are toxic.
Cats love, more than anything, to stalk and pounce — whether it’s with another cat or even an inatimate object! It’s important that this kind of play is encouraged and fostered with toys and cat stands that let them play!
Cats cost money.
Again, this is so elementary but all the little things add up! The ASPCA estimates that the average yearly costs for caring for a cat are $600 — this doesn’t include any emergency vet services. So, the best course of action — invest in pet insurance or save money in case your cat requires emergency vet care.
Adopting a cat is great for the cat and for you, however, it’s important to be ready to care for a cat for the rest of its life. Sometimes we can get a little ahead of ourselves and not see the full scope of adopting a pet.
Once you’ve taken a little time and have learned more about cats, our Carroll Gardens vet clinic is here for you every step of the way!