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I want to get my very own kitty! **Update - I got one!**

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  • I want to get my very own kitty! **Update - I got one!**

    I have wanted to get a pet for some time now (well, I do have a betta fish, but he doesn't count because I can't pet him!). I am usually a dog person but I also love cats. I am gone for about 9.5 - 10 hours a day so I don't feel that I could give a dog the attention and exercise it would need. So I've decided to look into getting a cat.

    I have never had my own cat, but my parents have had one for several years, and we had one when I was a kid. I understand the basic needs of cats (food, litter, scratching post, flea/tick stuff, vet checkups, etc.), and I plan on doing some research before I actually get one, but I'm wondering if all you cat people out there have any advice for me?

    I don't want to get a cat, bring it home, and then realize that it's lonely and bored and miserable in my apartment. I want to make its life better by adopting it, not worse! I am home every evening (except when I'm riding my horse, of course!), but like I said I am gone all day and some weekends (my neighbor friends would feed it for me on those weekends). How much attention and exercise do most cats really need? It is only a one bedroom apartment, so not too much space to run around and play, but I am planning on adopting an adult cat that would spend most of its time napping anyway.

    So it's still a month or too away before I go out and start looking for one to adopt, but any advice would be greatly appreciated!
    Last edited by Frivian; Aug. 26, 2011, 02:14 PM. Reason: update

  • #2
    Dont get a cat. Get 2.

    Especially if you are going to be gone for long periods of time. Then they have company during the day.
    Did you know, today is yesterdays tomorrow and what you would leave for tomorrow you should do today?
    I am pro-Slaughter

    Comment


    • #3
      yup.....TWO cats.............and, while kittens are enchanting, they are also destructive..trust me........so, get two older cats.....they are less adoptable anyway.........and it is often possible to get 2 animals that have already bonded, coming from the same home, and they need to be adopted together....THAT would be the perfect set up, and a bonus for all of you

      Comment


      • #4
        Yeah, hate to say it, but many cats aren't quite as independent as we like to think and really need a buddy.

        My "dog cat" as I call him (he's a lover and listens as well as a dog) was crushed when I finished school and moved. He went from having three girls around all the time and a nice big house to a teensy apartment with just me (and I was gone 10 hours a day). He had to have a buddy. So we went to the shelter and found him one. He is now completely content, and nobody cares if I'm gone for a few days (with a sitter coming to check in and play and feed daily).

        You may get lucky and find one that is content as an only cat, but if you are going to be gone that much, you may end up finding you need two. Honestly, two are as easy as one as long as you have a financial cushion for vet bills.

        Older cats are DEFINITELY the way to go, as you have a better idea what you're getting into. A rambunctious kitten can make your life just as miserable as a rambunctious puppy if you aren't around enough to monitor them. Plus, their personalities change a ton from kitten to adult, and I've known sweet kittens to turn into aloof adults and vice versa.

        It could work out to get one and see how it goes then go get another one if the first seems lonely. Or, you could just get two at once = ) Lots of them need homes. If I had a bigger place, I'd probably constantly be bringing new ones home! Haha.

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        • #5
          Originally posted by tallyho392 View Post
          yup.....TWO cats.............and, while kittens are enchanting, they are also destructive..trust me........so, get two older cats.....they are less adoptable anyway.........and it is often possible to get 2 animals that have already bonded, coming from the same home, and they need to be adopted together....THAT would be the perfect set up, and a bonus for all of you
          Totally agree. Plus, sometimes already matched pairs are hard to adopt out together, so that's another thing that can make you feel good = ) And you don't have to worry about finding the perfect match later on if you find your cat needs a buddy. Some cats can be difficult to pair up even if they are lonely.

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          • #6
            Yep, go tot he pound and get 2

            I got 2 'free to good homes' because I am a sucker for a cute face, but in your situation an adult pair sounds like a good idea (I am always sad when I go to Petsmart and see the kitties and can't bring anymore home (I found #3 last summer...)

            You got the basics, true enough.
            What else you need the kitty(s) will be hapy to tell you in person!

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            • #7
              Two kitties keep each other company! Good luck finding your new kitties. They are the best!!! If you are interested in a particular breed, you might try a rescue for that breed.

              Comment


              • #8
                If you are anywhere near me I have kittens. Free. Super cute.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Two adults! Unless you pick an adult that doesn't get along with other cats, which there are plenty of as well.

                  For entertainment while you're gone, a good sturdy scratching post or a cat tree in front of a window. Mine love to lay on the cat tree and watch all the birds in the yard - it keeps their minds busy and happy and they're less likely to create their own fun, which doesn't really mesh with our ideas. lol

                  They will be just fine with you being gone - they'll be happy to see you when you get home and if you'll play with them before bedtime it'll guarantee a good nights sleep for all of you.

                  Da Bird is Da Bomb according to my kitties! Some of mine like the laser light, some like the wands with the boa looking fuzzy things on the ends and one just loves it when I put an old blanket or throw on the floor and run the wand with the fuzzy under it. I guess he thinks it *might* be a mouse and just goes crazy for it.

                  Cats are much less maintenance than dogs - as long as you play with them, feed them and love them they're happy. And they're going to be a thousand times happier in a one bedroom apartment than in a cage in a shelter.

                  Oh, and please get adults - I foster cats for a local rescue and I've been fostering one for almost two years. She's as sweet as she can be, but kittens are the draw. I guess people forget that kittens are going to be cats one day.

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                  • #10
                    Get two cats. You can probably find a rescue who has a pair of cats who need to stay together without too much trouble at all. The pairs are nearly impossible to place, especially if they are over a year. Once they're not "cute kittens" their chances for adoption plummet.

                    Same advice also about older cats as well. If you've got an apartment and know you're going to be gone during the day, you are looking for kitties who:

                    1) Are okay being indoor cats (cats darting out doors because they're desperate to go outside is no fun!)

                    2) Are okay being alone. This doesn't mean they aren't thrilled to see you, it just means they don't start peeing on things and destroying things when you're not around. Cats can get just as nutty as dogs.

                    You have no idea about these things with kittens. A 1-2 year old cat is going to have a more established personality.

                    Also think about if you want a cat who's really into humans, or a cat who's more aloof. I've met people who wanted a cat because they thought it would be a pet who would just sort of be around, want to be pet occasionally but not need anything beyond food/water/litter. An awful lot of cats are NOT like that. Super human oriented cats can get really destructive/freaked out if they're not given enough attention, just like a dog, so food for thought.

                    And don't worry about an older kitten/cat not wanting to play. Ours are ANCIENT and wear us out with how much they want to play.
                    "The nice thing about memories is the good ones are stronger and linger longer than the bad and we sure have some incredibly good memories." - EverythingButWings

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                    • #11
                      If the pound in your area is anything like here (they got around 240 cats ) You might be able to strike a deal on 2 friends, with shots and detroubled (spay/neuter)

                      (I am afraid I am honoring my location and charter membership club again...)

                      Comment

                      • Original Poster

                        #12
                        Wow, thanks for all the replies!

                        I guess I didn't realize how important it would be for the cat to have a buddy. My parents' cat is a single pet, and they are gone all day, but I know he's happier when they're home. He is older now though, and when he was younger we had a dog (she died at age 16!) so he had her to keep him company. It definitely makes sense though - I have a few friends who all started with 1 cat, then ended up getting a 2nd to keep the 1st company.

                        I'm not sure I really want 2 cats though. I know you all say that it's not really any harder than one, but I really don't want to get myself in over my head. I think for now I may hold off a little while on the pet idea.

                        I will keep an eye out at the local cat rescue for an adult cat that doesn't necessarily get along with other cats, and maybe one who is more of a loner. I definitely don't want a kitten, even though they are adorable. I will wait to get a cat until I can find one like that. If that doesn't work out, I can always just wait until next summer. My fiance lives in a different city right now but he will be done with school next May, and will be moving here. Then there would be two people home, and I won't have to leave on the weekends to visit him.

                        Thanks again for all the advice! And if you are in Indiana and know of a loner type adult cat that needs a home, let me know.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          And of course, we'll want pictures of the kitties!

                          Kim
                          I loff my Quarter horse clique

                          I kill threads dead!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Frivian View Post
                            Wow, thanks for all the replies!

                            I guess I didn't realize how important it would be for the cat to have a buddy. My parents' cat is a single pet, and they are gone all day, but I know he's happier when they're home. He is older now though, and when he was younger we had a dog (she died at age 16!) so he had her to keep him company. It definitely makes sense though - I have a few friends who all started with 1 cat, then ended up getting a 2nd to keep the 1st company.

                            I'm not sure I really want 2 cats though. I know you all say that it's not really any harder than one, but I really don't want to get myself in over my head. I think for now I may hold off a little while on the pet idea.

                            I will keep an eye out at the local cat rescue for an adult cat that doesn't necessarily get along with other cats, and maybe one who is more of a loner. I definitely don't want a kitten, even though they are adorable. I will wait to get a cat until I can find one like that. If that doesn't work out, I can always just wait until next summer. My fiance lives in a different city right now but he will be done with school next May, and will be moving here. Then there would be two people home, and I won't have to leave on the weekends to visit him.

                            Thanks again for all the advice! And if you are in Indiana and know of a loner type adult cat that needs a home, let me know.
                            Careful! You are plugging that neon sign in that blinks in big bright letters over your house 'VACANCY' every cat and dog can read from miles away!

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Don't let only wanting one stop you from adopting! Two certainly aren't more work, but it does take a little more money.

                              Call your local rescues/shelters and see if they have any that would be happy as only cats. It's not that hard to find - cats are as varied as we are Lots of toys and climbing/scratching surfaces - cat trees, big scratching posts with a bed on top or window perches, and they'll be perfectly content to spend the day lounging and watching birds.

                              Good luck on your search and have fun!

                              Comment

                              • Original Poster

                                #16
                                Originally posted by Alagirl View Post
                                Careful! You are plugging that neon sign in that blinks in big bright letters over your house 'VACANCY' every cat and dog can read from miles away!

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Yep, call your local rescues. They will be THRILLED to hear from someone looking for something other than a kitten! And I know the rescue we work with does have adult cats who need to be "only cats", and they're so, so hard to place.

                                  The ones that really tear me up are the ones where they were a beloved lap pet and the owners died. My husband and I would go get every one of the "owners were in a car accident and died, no family will take the cat", or "owner went into nursing home" or "owner died on operating table" poor kitties who just ended up there by a really cruel twist of fate. But then we'd have like 20 cats, and we're full at 3.
                                  "The nice thing about memories is the good ones are stronger and linger longer than the bad and we sure have some incredibly good memories." - EverythingButWings

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Some cats do fine as only cats, others like company. I find that if they're used to having buddies, it's harder to get them used to being by themself. But it's doable. Check out Petfinder; there are always cats on there that have "No cats" on their ads.

                                    My first kitty was an only cat when I was in college. Just the two of us in an apartment, and I would leave occasionally on the weekends. She was fine (birdfeeder on the balcony...priceless entertainment ). When I graduated, I moved back home with my parents for a few months, and they had three other cats. She pretended to hate them, but when I moved into another apartment a few months later and she was by herself again, she was lonely and cried occasionally for the first few weeks. Not that I needed much pushing, but she got a little brother in very short order, and I could tell she was much happier. But I'm sure she would have adjusted either way.

                                    Caitlin
                                    Caitlin
                                    *OMGiH I Loff my Mare* and *My Saddlebred Can Do Anything Your Horse Can Do*
                                    http://community.webshots.com/user/redmare01

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      Aside from what everyone else said about getting two cats, please, please, PLEASE get your kitties spayed/neutered when the time comes. If you don't, you are only contributing to a pet overpopulation problem and creating a headache for everyone else to deal with.
                                      And this is the story of your red right ankle.

                                      Comment

                                      • Original Poster

                                        #20
                                        Originally posted by Young Equestrian View Post
                                        Aside from what everyone else said about getting two cats, please, please, PLEASE get your kitties spayed/neutered when the time comes. If you don't, you are only contributing to a pet overpopulation problem and creating a headache for everyone else to deal with.
                                        Haha, no need to worry. I used to work at an animal shelter, got my horse from a horse rescue, and know very well the problems caused by overpopulation. But it's a moot point because I will be getting an adult cat from a shelter or a rescue, and IME they don't let anything out without spaying/neutering it first anyway.

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