Choosing the Right Pet
Cats

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Office location:
Richardson
1332 S. Plano Road, Suite 106
Richardson, TX
75081
Phone: (972) 699-7387

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Cats

 

Cats are one of the most common domestic pets. They are exceptionally intelligent creatures that can provide affection and entertainment (who doesn’t love internet cat videos??). The average feline lifespan ranges from 13 to 17 years for indoor cats, so anyone considering adopting a cat should be prepared for a long-term commitment. Cats have extraordinary hearing capabilities and have eyes that are well-adapted to low light situations. In deciding to adopt a cat, you first have to determine whether you want an adult cat or a kitten. Adult cats can to be easier because they are typically litter box trained, they have already developed their personality so you know upon purchasing what temperament your cat is going to have, and many will readily adapt to a new home just as easily as kittens do. There are also a lot of great adult cats in rescues and shelters waiting for good homes, since kittens tend to be easier for these organizations to adopt out.

Supplies every cat owner needs

  Break-away cat collar. 

  Cat carrier. 

  Cat litter. 

  Cat toys.

  Food and water dishes. 

  Litter box scoop. 

  Litter box. 

  Quality cat or kitten food. 

The difference in cat breeds

When selecting a cat, it is important to choose a one that fits in with your lifestyle. Most cats tend to be very independent and are overall fairly low-maintenance pets, although they do still require regular attention, activity, and veterinary care. Before you purchase a kitten from a breeder, remember that there are thousands of cats and kittens waiting in shelters and rescues for a family to adopt them into a good home. Many cats can’t be grouped into specific breeds, as their predecessors may have been stray or feral. We classify these cats by their coat length into “domestic short hair”, “domestic medium hair”, and “domestic long hair”, but these cats can vary widely in their coloring, size, and personalities.

The following are some of the most common cat breeds along with specific personality traits, if you are curious about some common pure-breeds.

  Bengal – affectionate, but very lively and playful. Large in size. Not a lap cat. Need a lot of space and stimulation so they often require supervised outdoor time. Love water and are skilled hunters.

  Cornish Rex – a very active cat with impressive agility. Playful throughout adulthood and eager to play games and fetch.

  Maine Coon – curious and affectionate, these cats are great companions. Large in size. Can be trained to fetch and walk in a harness. Fur requires brushing and grooming.

  Persian – good cat for a family because they adapt well to their environment. Is the most mellow breed of cat and is also very loving. Are very quiet, but do require a lot of grooming and maintenance.

  Ragdoll – must be kept as an indoor cat because of its incredibly mild temperament. Large in size. So named for their tendency to go limp when picked up. Very intelligent and affectionate – can even fetch and learn tricks much like a puppy. Considered a lap cat, but like to be active. Will even come when called!

  Siamese – a very loving cat that thrives on human attention. Very vocal. Can be demanding, so if you do not want a cat that requires a lot of attention, a Siamese is not for you. Stay near their owner and are a great cat for families.

  Tonkinese – have a short, thick coat and are an extremely intelligent cat. They enjoy attention and companionship and are great for multi-pet households or families with children.

Cat Behavior

Cats are usually very independent beings and many do not crave attention, though some cats do want to remain close to their owner at all times. Typical cat behaviors include purring, hissing, kneading, and ear or tail motion. Purring indicates contentment with their current surroundings. Hissing is a defense mechanism meant to scare off a predator. Kneading is a sign of happiness and contentment. Fear can be noted when a cat pins their ears back towards the sides of their head. The tail has various movements that denote meaning: a tail held up is a sign of welcoming; an upright tail with the sway of the tip is an invitation to play; and a fully swaying tail is a sign of annoyance.

Cats are instinctual hunters and do not necessarily hunt just because they are hungry: cats see hunting as an entertainment. Occasionally, your cat will bring you back their game, either dead or alive, as a sign of affection. Wild mother cats do this for their young to feed them and teach them how to hunt (Your pet cat is possibly trying to do the same!) Cats also enjoy scratching—scratching is a completely normal cat behavior! Make sure to provide your cat with plenty of scratching posts—some cats prefer vertical surfaces and some prefer horizontal surfaces. You can keep your cat from damaging your furniture by providing plenty of acceptable places for her to scratch and by keeping her claws regularly trimmed.

It is very important to have your cat spayed or neutered at about 6 months of age to prevent unwanted behaviors and unwanted breeding.

If your cat is not neutered or spayed, he or she may display unwated/annoying behaviors such as vocalizing loudly while in search of a mate, may run away or wander, and may spray urine to mark territory. Even more important, cats are very prolific and can produce many kittens in a short period of time. There are already thousands of unwanted cats in shelters, rescues, and loose as strays. It is your responsibility as a cat owner to have your cat spayed or neutered so as not to contribute to the overpopulation problem.

 

As with any pet, prior research and understanding of a pet’s needs ensures a happy life together.