Have you been wanting a cat but need some help deciding whether you're ready to make the commitment? There are plenty of factors to consider, and according to here’s our top 6 reasons why you might be ready to bring home a new companion.
1. You appreciate the importance of socialization for your cat.
Sometimes cats unfairly get a bad rep as being an antisocial species, but for many felines, that couldn't be further from the truth! Properly socializing your cat can make her less likely to shudder out of fear when friends and family visit. Introduce her to new experiences to boost confidence, including people, sounds, smells and household appliances. And make sure to pair them with plenty of praise and treats. There are even kitty classes that offer positive experiences and training. Putting a high value on socialization and understanding what it takes to raise a confident kitty shows that you might be ready for a cat.
2. You're financially prepared.
It's hard to estimate how much having a cat will cost, but here are some expenses you can expect like food, a litterbox, litter, toys, and doctor visits. For most kitties, an annual exam may be enough, but for others, like outdoor kitties, visiting the vet a few times a year is often necessary. When you're calculating costs to decide whether you can afford a cat, make sure to factor in payments for routine health care, and a budget for emergencies and the cost of medications.
3. You have time to exercise your cat.
Yes, cats need exercise! You may not take your cat out for a walk like you would your dog, but exercise is more important than many potential cat owners realize. Not only does it help keep your kitty in good physical and mental shape, but it strengthens your bond with her. So dedicate some time every day for active play and keep a collection of toys that promote movement: feather toys, laser pointers, climbing trees, paper bags and even cardboard boxes are a must.
4. You're committed to creating a cat-friendly home.
One of our favorite things about cat-friendly houses is seeing those scratching posts, and cat trees. These enrichment items encourage cats to express their natural instincts, from climbing and jumping to scratching and hunting for food. There's another aspect of feline-friendly living to consider- cat proofing. If you want to bring home a cat, be prepared to eliminate items that could poison or harm her, including certain foods, medications, cleaners, chemicals, plants and more.
5. You can take on litterbox duty.
Litterbox duty is necessary, of course, so we make the best of it despite the unpleasantries. To help keep the litterbox clean, we recommend purchasing litter, bags and a scoop. And remember that if you have multiple cats, the rule of thumb is that you want to offer one litterbox per cat, plus another litterbox. That will hopefully help ward off potential territory disputes and the resulting accidents.
6. You're prepared to make a long-term commitment.
Many feline friends live into their late teens, and some have even been known to thrive into their 20s, so be sure that when you're making the decision to bring a cat into your life, you understand the kind of long-term commitment you're making. With any luck, you'll have plenty of happy years ahead to spend with your cat.