Thursday, October 6, 2016

How to Adopt the Perfect Cat to Suit Your Lifestyle

Guest post by Annie Anderson, founder of MeowKai

Owning a pet is a large responsibility, and while cats don’t need quite as much attention or care as dogs, it’s important to ensure that you and your feline are a good fit for each other. Every cat has his own unique personality, and you must choose carefully if you and your feline are going to have a happy life together! Here are some things to consider as you look for that purr-fect kitty for you and your household:

Family Members

How many family members are in your house? Is your home normally bustling with activity, or is it a calm and quiet environment? If you have young children (under 5) consider your adoption choices very carefully. Many adoption centers won’t allow families with youngsters adopt cats or kittens, because toddlers and young children may be too rough with them. Of course, kittens and cats can scratch or bite if they feel threatened, so it works both ways. Active households with children are suited for cats that are friendly, outgoing and not timid or shy. Manx, Maine Coon and Burmese breeds may be a good choice.


Other Pets

Some cats do well with other pets, like dogs, rabbits, hamsters, other cats etc. and others… well, let’s just say they’d rather have the house all to themselves. If you have other pets, don’t choose a cat that is skittish or shy. Choose a friendly, outgoing one that is not afraid of humans or pets. Ragdolls, Persians and Manx breeds are a good choice for homes with other pets.

Your Work Schedule

Most cats are independent and quite happy to be left alone for a large part of the day. So, if you’re away at work for 8-10 hours of the day, your cat will be more than happy to nap, eat, walk around the house, nap, use their litter box, nap, eat… you get the picture. If your cat is super friendly (like a Siamese, or Birman) expect him to greet you when you get home. He may even jump right into your arms!

Some breeds really like to be around people, and they get anxious or stressed if left alone too long. These include the Egyptian Mau, Devon Rex and the Maine Coon breeds. Don’t be surprised if they jump up on your desk or your lap while you’re working.


Kitten or Adult Cat?

Not only should you consider the breed, but also whether you’re going to adopt a cat or kitten. While kittens are arguably the cutest things on the planet, they are also a bit more work, so if you don’t have the time to dedicate to caring for a kitten, opt for an adult feline.

Kittens need much more time and attention. They will get into everything (much like a toddler!) and may climb curtains, jump on countertops, chew on shoes and chase everything that moves. You’ll have to make sure that long cords and strings are out of their reach. Think of it as baby-proofing your house. You have to watch them constantly to make sure they are out of harm’s way.

An adult cat, while still being somewhat playful, is not quite as active or rambunctious. You’ll still have to make sure that everything is out of harm’s way, but you don’t have to constantly keep an eye on them.

Cat Personality Types

Here is a breakdown of some of the most popular breeds and their general personality traits:

Persian: These dignified cats are quiet and sweet, very affectionate and friendly, although they may not be the most ‘kid friendly’ breed.

Manx: These guys are very affectionate with all family members, and won’t appear skittish or shy when guests come over.

Siamese: These distinct looking cats are extremely affectionate with adults and kids alike; they are very friendly, and are also very independent. They are perfectly happy left to their own devices for a few hours at a time.

American shorthair: These are good-natured felines who enjoy time with family just as much as they enjoy some alone time. He’ll also do really well if there are other pets in the home.


Give Your Cat time to Adjust

Whichever breed you choose, it’s critical that you give your cat some time to adjust to his new surroundings. If there are other pets to consider, introduce them one at a time after a few days of your new cat moving in, and always make sure they are well supervised. It may take several weeks before all of your pets get used to your new addition. The same goes for children – always make sure they are supervised, so no one gets scratched or hurt.

The way you treat your pets is a good indication of how they’re personality will shine through; if you are always yelling or scolding, your cat will become skittish, shy or scared around humans. If you treat them with love and kindness, they will learn to trust you and be more affectionate around you and your family.


Author Bio: Annie is the founder of MeowKai, where she and her associates write about cat behavior, health issues, and tips and tricks on how to get your cat to behave! It concentrates on creating the best life for you and your cat so you can enjoy each other’s company and build that trust that is so important between pet and human.

14 comments:

  1. These are good tips! My breed (Somali) is fun and active - we do well in most family situations, and many of us are good with other species. We might be too busy for elderly folks. One of my littermates went to a family with a baby about the same time I went home with my human so the two of them could grow up together! I met the little boy a few months ago, and it was funny because when he saw me, he mistook me for my brother and kept calling me Nacho (his name's Nacho Chili).

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  2. It seems like people understand which dog breeds are best for their needs - but with cats, people tend to go more on looks. Of course, that's a huge generalization, and many people adopt dogs and cats without the slightest care for particular needs - which is unfortunate when you consider how many end up in a shelter as a result of the owner not understanding the breed-specific care required in the first place.

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  3. Great guest post and reminder that choosing a new cat is a big responsibility. I'd like to throw in my two cents for adopting senior cats. They can make excellent companions and aren't as boisterous as kittens!

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  4. This is such a great post, Mudpie and Melissa! It really is so important to bring in a kitty who will feel comfortable and safe in your home setting. Many people don't seem to realize how diverse cats and their personalities are, and those people really need to read this post! Thank you for sharing this!

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  5. Great post. We hope any human thinking of adopting a cat reads this.

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  6. Hi. It's been a while. I hope you're doing great. Hugs.

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  7. Very nice post!!!So much important information before adopting a cat. Thanks for sharing!!!
    Bella

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  8. Those are some great tips. We Sphynx are very active, affectionate, and demanding! We need a lot of attention, so many breeders recommend getting two of us, so we can keep each other company. We've been described as a cross between a cat, dog, monkey, and small child.

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  9. This is a great guest post. There are many things people need to think about before just getting a cat. Mommy knew she didn't want a kitten because she didn't feel she would be home enough. (She also didn't want the cat to outlive her!) Lexy was lonely so that's why she got me!

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  10. Great post. Most of the time cats have picked me :)

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