What to Consider When Choosing a New Kitten

Choosing the right cat or kitten is an important decision that can last a lifetime. When selecting a cat or kitten, both the personality of the owner and the cat should be taken into consideration. Although most cats share certain characteristics in common there are distinguishing features that vary from breed to breed.

Before selecting a cat or kitten it would be helpful to visit a cat rescue and a cat show to observe all about cats and different breeds. An important consideration in selecting a cat or kitten is whether they will be an indoor or outdoor cat, as well as the cost and time commitment of kitten care.

Cats have historically been a popular choice as a pet because of their independent nature. Some new cat owners who haven’t yet learned all about cats and are unfamiliar with cat behavior might interpret this independence as a form of rejection. 

Such behavior is entirely normal, however and over time the cat will usually form a bond with the owner. A young, active family might prefer a cat breed such as the robust American short hair cat, whereas a more sedate and mature owner may prefer a more docile breed like a Tonkinese or Burmese. 

Owners who are prepared to devote time and energy to grooming might select a Persian longhair cat, unlike the time-strapped, working executive who would benefit from low-maintenance short hair breeds such as Abyssinians or Russian blues.

Persian Cat
Persian Cat

A visit to a local cat rescue or animal shelter can make a huge impact on families with small children. The importance of spraying and neutering is a valuable lesson played out dramatically on a daily basis, and should be discussed with kids who are old enough to understand basic reproductive biology. 

Stray cats, shelter cats and kittens can make some of the best household pets and often include a variety of mixed breed as well as purebred cats and kittens at various ages and in differing states of health. 

Most rescue shelters provide a veterinary evaluation and initial vaccinations prior to adoption, offsetting the adoption fees. 

While cats and kittens with special health problems are in greatest need of care, the additional responsibility of adopting these special needs animals, including the costs associated with ongoing health issues, should be considered.

Be sure to take a cat carrier to bring home your new cat or kitten!

Choosing Between Outdoor and Indoor Cats

After visiting a cat rescue and cat show and narrowing down your favorites, serious consideration should be given to whether your cat will be indoor or outdoor pet. 

City-dwellers should never allow their pets outdoors without being in a secure enclosure, as cats are ill-equipped to deal with traffic, toxic garbage, strangers and other unseen dangers. 

Those in the countryside should also consider the pitfalls of allowing their cat to run free outdoors, as they may be vulnerable to dangers such as predatory animals like coyotes, dogs and venomous snakes. 

Although cats may have originally started out as a wild outdoor breed, modern domesticated cats are definitely safer indoors.

Raising Cats and Children In The Same House

There is nothing more fun than the playful energy of a new kitten. When considering all about cats for kids, however, it’s important to explain that the decision is a long term commitment. 

Although the kitten stage may only last for several months, the average lifespan of an indoor cat is 13 to 17 years. By selecting a cat that’s compatible with the personality and lifestyle of the owners and making a commitment for long-term-long care, a lifetime of learning all about cats is a joyous adventure waiting to unfold!

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