Her Campus Logo Her Campus Logo

Why You Should Adopt An Older Cat Today

We all know the excitement of kittens. They are fun, energetic, and ready to play at any given moment. Adopting a kitten sounds like a dream, but when going to the shelters, especially outside of a cats mating season, you are going to find a lot of older cats up for adoption instead of those cute little kittens everyone has their heart set on. 

In reality, once a cat is a few months old, no one is particularly thrilled to adopt them because they “are no longer a kitten.” I’m sorry, but what? Sure, there are some lazy cats out there, but that is more their personality (born to snooze) rather than them not being a kitten anymore (tell my 5-year-old that he’s not a kitten, he will prove you wrong). Just because a cat is fully grown by one year old, also does not mean that they are no longer a kitten. 

The good news is there are a lot of older kitties looking for their forever homes, and you could be the one to adopt them! There are a lot of benefits to adopting older cats, that you just won’t get with those young little kittens. 


They are already litterbox trained.

When bringing a new cat into your home, litterbox training can be a nightmare. First, you have to make sure the cat knows where the box actually is, and doesn’t accidently use something else as a bathroom. Then, once they know where it is, you have to actually get the cat go in the box. Both are incredibly time consuming, but with older cats, that is just something that can live on in your nightmares. As long as an older cat knows where the box is, they will be perfectly happy to make that part of your life a lot easier. 

They have much lower adoption rates.

Sure those kittens are cute, but it comes at a price. Not to mention that older kitties are just as cute, for a much lower price. Adoption fees are often a lot lower for older cats, which is really great when you are looking to adopt and don’t want to pay a small fortune to bring your new best friend home. 

You are most likely saving their lives in more ways than one.

Everyone knows that bringing an animal home from the sealther gives them a whole new life, but did you know that it can actually save their lives too? Adult and senior kitties are the most likely to be euthanized in shelters to make room for other animals. Adopting these animals will actually help lower the rate at which animals are euthanized, and it will open up a spot in the shelter for another animal to be saved. 

Not to mention that cats who spend a lot of time in shelters can fall victim to depression and hopelessness, just like we humans can. While it is a slightly different and extremely hard to diagnose (since the symptoms of feline depression are often also symptoms of other illnesses), it is entirely possible and often found in cats. This causes them to withdraw and lose their appetite, but this is likely due to the trauma of being turned over to the shelter by their previous owners, or the amount of time they have spent there. Fortunately, giving them a forever home is usually just the thing they need to start living their lives to the fullest, laziest extent.

Their personalities are defined.

Cats can be finicky and their personalities can change rapidly as kittens, especially when they are surrounded by other animals. We adopted one of my cats as a kitten, and she was the snuggliest little lovebug you could hope for, and a year later, she was a totally different cat (we still love her dearly though, just now from a distance). Since turning a year old, she hasn’t budged in her distaste for human contact, which just helps in pointing out that you won’t get any surprises with a cat that is already set in their ways. 

There are often no surprises.

What you get is what you get, plain and simple. While there are certainly some things that can develop over time, that is true with any other animal you might bring into your home. With older cats though, you won’t have to wonder about certain things. They are already fully grown, so you won’t be shocked when your palm-sized kitten is suddenly a 20lbs brick wall of chonk; they also know what they like and what they don’t like. And after a little adjusting to their new home, they will certainly show you all of their quirks.

Deciding to bring an animal into your home can be a tough decision, but what pet shouldn’t be. In the end, we all want an animal that is going to love us unconditionally, and older cats are no exception to that. Just like any animal, they will love you (after a little adjusting), and the most important thing to remember is that it doesn’t matter how long you have them for, what matters is that you gave them the best life possible for the time you were together, even if that came a little later in their lives. 

Talia is the Campus Correspondent for Her Campus at Emerson. Talia is also a Chapter Advisor, Region Leader, and HSA Advisor. She has previously worked as an intern for the national headquarters of Her Campus in the community management department. Talia is a Writing, Literature, and Publishing major at Emerson College in a 4+1 combined bachelor's and master's program in publishing. She is an aspiring writer and publisher. Talia is known for living life with her journal, a pen, and three lovely cats.
Similar Reads👯‍♀️