If you are looking to add a new cat to your family, the big decision is where to get one from. There are always plenty of kitties listed in the local paper, but you may question why the animal is going sold or given away. Does it have bad habits or an incurable condition? You have no way of knowing until you have parted with money and taken it to the vet – and at that point, you’re stuck with it.
Another choice you may be considering is to go to a cat breeders. However, cats bought from breeders are often very expensive, and many have medical concerns due to inbreeding and poor vet care when kept in a breeding cage.
Seen from that light, one great choice that simply makes sense is to rescue a cat from your local animal shelter or pet rescue center. Most shelter animals will vaccinate, spay/ neuter, and have their veterinarian check each animal for medical problems prior to letting the animal go to a new home. This can give you the assurance that you are buying a healthy pet that will provide your family with a lifetime of love.
Your new pet will come complete with adoption papers, and part of the adoption fee is often waived if you use the shelter’s recommended vet for your first yearly check up. You also have the choice of getting a low-or-no-cost spay or neuter from the shelter’s vet, which will usually be performed before you even pick the animal up, meaning less hastle for you.
Shelter pets are typically incredibly loving, as though trying to make up for all the love and affection they missed while they were kept in cages at the animal shelter. Another reason why adopting from an animal shelter is a smart idea is that you can find dozens (sometimes hundreds) of cats of all ages, colors and breeds – unlike buying a cat from a private owner, who will only offer you the one cat and if you don’t get on with it or don’t like it, you’ve wasted the trip.
There will also very likely to be many pedigree animals among the selection, such as Siamese cats, Persians, Bengal cats, even Ragdolls. All cats are treated as equals at the shelter. Shelters do not charge extra for pedigrees, as they want all animals to go to a good home. If you are looking for a particular breed, most shelters have websites where you can browse through photos of each week’s inmates, or alternatively you can call ahead to ask if your favorite breed is present at the shelter.
One word of warning though – when you see all the needy little faces, you may wind up going home with a healthy, hearty and purring non-pedigree! Cross-bred ‘moggies’ have a way of winning your heart over more aloof pedigrees – probably because they know they have to work harder to win your love!
While kittens are the most popular cat choice, adopting an adult cat has many benefits, including getting a pet who is litter trained, calm, and likely experienced around children and families. With a kitten you’re taking a chance and signing yourself up for a whole year of work just to make the kitty poop in a box and not cry at night. With an adult cat, hey presto, all the hard work has already been done for you.
If you already have a lot of animals, consider adopting a senior cat. Seniors have just as much love and affection to give your family, but sadly while most kittens will end up finding a home, if you see an older cat at the shelter be aware that this may be his last-ever home. Senior cats usually being long-term residents of most shelters, and are usually put down after a shorter time to make space for younger, more appealing animals. They say that the true judge of a society is to look at the way it treats its animals, its criminals and its elderly – so when you rescue an elderly cat, you are being an admirable member of society. If you can fill a senior cat’s last years with love and warmth, you’re a better person than those who go home clutching a kitten that would’ve found a home anyway.
A new pet is always an exciting addition to any household. If you have been looking for a new cat, it is highly recommended that you visit your local animal shelter. These animals have been abandoned, but each still have many years of love to share with you. Shelters are truly wonderful places, and you can help curb overpopulation and save a life at the same time by choosing an animal shelter cat as your next pet.