There are various situations to consider before adopting a life long friend. It can happen to the best of us. You see a cute, tiger-striped kitten with white paws and green eyes, just begging for attention. You take one look, and the next thing you know, you're walking down the pet food aisle at the supermarket.
If you're like most of us, falling in love with a pet is easy. And no wonder! Sharing your home with a four-legged friend can be one of life's greatest joys. Cats provide companionship, love and help relieve stress after a hard day's work.
Adopting a pet is a big decision. cats require time, money, and a 15 - 20 year commitment. Pet ownership can be rewarding, but only if you think through your decision before you adopt a companion.
Things To Know
The fact that you're thinking about adopting from an animal shelter means you're a responsible and caring person. But before you make that decision to bring a furry friend into your life, take a moment to think over these questions:
Why do you want a pet?It's amazing how many people fail to ask themselves this simple question before they get a pet. Adopting a pet just because it's "the thing to do" or because the kids have been pining for a pet usually ends up being a big mistake. Don't forget that pets may be with you 10, 15, even 20 years.
Do you have time for a pet? Pets cannot be ignored just because you're tired or busy. They require food, water, exercise, care, and companionship every day of every year. Many animals in the shelter are there because their owners didn't realize how much time it took to care for them.
Can you afford a pet? The costs of pet ownership can be quite high. Veterinary care, food, litter, toys, and other expenses add up quickly.
Are you prepared to deal with special problems that a pet can cause? Parasite treatment, scratching furniture, unexpected medical emergencies are unfortunate but common aspects of pet ownership.
Can you have a pet where you live? Many rental communities have pet restrictions. Make sure you know what they are before you bring a companion animal home.
Is it a good time for you to adopt a pet? If you have young children, for instance, do you have time to monitor them with the cat? Any cat, no matter how gentle, will defend itself if it is cornered or being threatened. If you are a student, in the military or travel frequently, waiting until you settle down may be wise.
Are your living arrangements suitable for the animal you have in mind? Is there room for the cat to run? Cats get the zoomies and need room to exercise. If a cat feels crowded and does not have enough room to spread out, the stress can cause health and behavioural issues that result in going outside the litter box or becoming aggresssive. They may need enrichment and exercise outside a small space.
Do you know who will care for your pet while you're away on vacation?You'll need either reliable friends and neighbors or money to pay for a boarding kennel or pet-sitting service.
Will you be a responsible pet owner? Giving your pet love, companionship, exercise, a healthy diet, and regular veterinary care are essential.
Finally, are you prepared to keep and care for the pet for his or her entire lifetime? When you adopt a pet, you are making a commitment to care for the animal for his or her lifetime. Cats live 15 - 20 years on average. They are a long term commitment. They are sentient beings with feelings that do not deserve to be discarded when you move, enter into a new relationship or decide on a younger pet.
Cats Are For Life
Cats live 15 – 20 years on average. When you adopt, you are committing to spending time with them everyday, feeding them at least twice a day, cleaning dishes and litter boxes everyday and getting them to the vet for vaccines and check-ups annually. Time, veterinary/food/litter costs and caring for your new companion are big commitments.
Many of the rescue's homeless cats are the result of unintentional cruelty when people who do not understand these commitments abandon their pets, for example:
families who cannot afford to have the ‘free’ cat they obtained online spayed or neutered - then realize they cannot stand the yowling & spraying when the cat goes into heat;
seniors who adopt that cute kitten and do not have a succession plan in place for when they go into a retirement home or can no longer physically care for the cat;
families who go through life changes like moving or having children and realize that they cannot bring the cat with them or can no longer care for them and a new baby at the same time.
Sharing your life with a companion cat can bring incredible rewards if you're ready to adopt and have thought it through. Please click the links above at the top of the page to see our many wonderful cats available for adoption.
If someone tugs at your heart and you would like to meet him or her, please fill out our Adoption Application & Agreement.