Adopting Older Cats

When looking to adopt a cat, people always spend hours oohing and awing over kittens. But older cats need love too! There seems to be a belief that older cats will involve more vet trips than their younger counterparts, and are thus a more expensive investment. Pet lovers also unfortunately tend to gravitate towards animals that have not previously lived in someone’s home. Contrary to these beliefs, older cats have several qualities that make them better pets than kittens. 

The first benefit of adopting an older cat is that they will be trained. Older cats know how to use their litter box, and probably already have better manners than kittens. That also means that you can save your money and time in not having to break your cat’s bad habits! 

Another benefit is that older cats are cleaner than kittens. This is because older cats have a well formed self cleaning technique and schedule. If they track in dirt from outside, or even from their litter box, you will not have to worry about trying to bathe your cat. This is a huge plus if you prefer a tidy space, and/or live with roommates. No more fear over being scratched when you try to clean your cat. 

Adult cats are of course fully formed, so you know exactly how much cat you are getting. Surprisingly, it is almost impossible to predict the full size a kitten will grow to, even if their breed is known. By adopting an adult cat, it ensures that your cat will fit the space, and eliminates the horrible possibility that you will need to return it to the shelter. Similarly to size, some kittens show signs of having short hair, but transform into long hair at adulthood. People who have allergies, or who live with others with allergies often require a specific hair length. Adopting a kitten, who turns out to be a long haired breed will not bode well for the owner, and will most likely result in the transferring of homes. 

Kittens are famous for having high energy, and require constant care in the first few years. This is a massive undertaking that many working people simply do not have the time and energy for. Adult cats are more chilled out, which makes them a good companion for young to old pet owners. Due to their full size, and familiarity with attention, this also makes older cats a great pet for families with young children. Adult cats are less fragile than kittens, and have learned how to remove themselves from situations without lashing out. Small kittens pose a risk for being dropped and stepped on. There is also a risk for kittens to learn to bite due to rough handling of young children. 

Overall, when you adopt an older cat you will know immediately if they are a match for you. Older cats are fully developed in size, coat length, and personalities. If you take the time to sit down with them before you pick the one, (and I highly suggest doing this) you will find the perfect match. Kittens are a lot of work, and need someone who is familiar with training techniques, and time in their schedule. When you adopt a kitten, you don’t fully know how they will behave or look as an adult. Adult cats often spend years in a shelter waiting for the right home because pet owners are infatuated with kittens. In fact, many kittens stand a higher risk for being returned than an older cat. It is said that older cats know you are saving them from shelter life, and will love you for your actions forever.