Bringing home a new cat or kitten is an exciting time for everyone, but making sure you’re ready for a new family member is a big deal. Although cats are relatively easy to maintain for as far as pets go, they do still need specific care and attention. If you’re second-guessing any of these points, you might want to reconsider getting a cat at this time.
#1 – Time & Attention
Cats are known for being solitary animals, but they actually need a lot of love and attention just like dogs. Cats need daily affection and play to stimulate their bodies and their minds. A bored cat is an unhappy cat and there is no reason your kitty should not be getting the attention they need. Playing with your cat should be a routine activity, not only for your cat’s physical and mental exercise, but to build the bond between you two. Just because cats are capable of being alone for longer periods of time doesn’t mean that they should be left alone. They need attention, and if you work very long hours or are out of town frequently, you might want to consider a pet that doesn’t need as much consideration.
#2 – A Steady Income
You don’t need to be rich to own a cat, but you do need to be prepared for routine care like food, housing, toys and litter. Plus, your cat is going to need a veterinary check-up at least once a year; more if they become sick or injured. Kittens will need to see a veterinarian more often because they’ll need vaccines. Life happens, and anyone can lose their job or primary source of income at any time without notice, so don’t feel bad if you’re going through hardship. Just make sure that you’ll still be able to comfortably provide for your feline in the foreseeable future.
#3 – A Stable Living Situation
Most of us have wanted to sneak a pet home and hide it in our closets or under our beds so Mom wouldn’t see, but we can’t do that in real life. Make sure that wherever you live is comfortable having a cat in the house. Many rented apartments and homes don’t allow pets and it’s important to respect those policies. Getting a cat and having your landlord find out about it will result in your cat having to move very quickly. Not only is rehoming stressful for your cat and you, it risks your kitty ending up in the shelter. Again, life happens and things change, but as long as you’re in good shape to bring a cat home now you should be set for the future.
#4 – Patience
All pets require patience. You will need to adjust your schedule somewhat to suit your cat’s needs, especially if you have a kitten that needs litter box training. You and your new kitty will work out a schedule that best suits you both, but extra time will be taken having to feed, litter train and play with your cat. Some cats are more sensitive than others, so you may even need patience in order to build a bond if your new cat is very stressed in their new home. It can take a while for cats to come around and show affection to their new owners, so try not to push the issue and everyone will be happier in the long run.
There are many different things to consider when bringing home a new pet of any species, and cats require just as much care as any other animal. They are affectionate creatures that need love and attention and do best with owners that can provide adequate diligence. So if you’re thinking of bringing a new cat or kitten home and you’ve got these 4 things covered, go ahead and add that new family member!