Cat Ownership Considerations
So, you want to look into owning a cat. Keep in mind, owning a cat is nothing like owning a dog. Cats have their own qualities, and their own shortcomings. Cats can be great pets, like dogs, but they can also be a handful. If you want to have a cat, you will need to take some things into consideration.
Cats do not need to be taken for a walk, like dogs. Cats certainly need exercise, but they typically get that from sprinting wildly around the house like they’re possessed. A dog will need to be taken out for a walk, or let out in the backyard to do their business. A cat can simply use a litter box. This is both an advantage and a disadvantage. You don’t need to take the cat out a hundred times a day, but you will need to keep the litter box cleaned out, or the smell will quickly become overpowering.
Another consideration in owning a cat is the personality. Dogs are pack animals, and they happily accept their owners as a part of the pack. Cats are solitary animals that tend to look down their furry little noses at inferior creatures. That isn’t to say that cats can’t be affectionate. Just like dogs, cat’s personalities do vary. Some cats only want someone to feed them and clean their litter box, while others love getting as much attention as possible. When a cat wants attention, though, it wants the attention on its own terms.
Even a sweet and loving cat may love sitting on its owners lap, being scratched behind the ears and under the chin. When the cat has had enough, though, it has had enough. Some breeds of cat are more social than others, and want more attention. Siamese cats tend to be one of the more social breeds, but still, the personality will vary.
Owning a cat can provide a lot of entertainment… when the cat feels like it. Cats are the only creature on earth, with the possible exception of teenagers that can cram 48 hours of sleep into a 24 hour day. When the cat isn’t sleeping, it can be entertaining to watch. Dangle a string in front of a cat, or shine a flashlight beam on the floor, and the cat will go crazy trying to catch it. Small toys, like a catnip stuffed mouse will keep the cat playing for hours.
Owning a cat can be wonderful. The cat can provide companionship, affection, entertainment, and if necessary, keep the mice out of the house. Just be prepared for a cat’s particular quirks. If you can, find out the cat’s personality before you bring it home, and determine whether it’s the right cat for you. Go to your local shelter, and spend some time looking at the cats that they have available. Before you get your cat though, you should remember one other point of owning a cat. You don’t own the cat, the cat owns you.