Cat ownership can be very rewarding. As a result, it is perfectly natural for interested individuals to wonder whether they should get a cat or not. Having said that, it is important to note that cat ownership is a huge undertaking, meaning that interested individuals need to make sure that they are ready for such a serious responsibility. Here are some factors that people can use to determine whether they are ready for cat ownership or not:
You Have the Financial Means
Fundamentally, people who want to become a cat owner must be capable of providing them with food as well as other necessities. As such, cat ownership comes with a considerable financial cost, meaning that interested individuals need to have the financial means. Some cat-related expenses are immediate, with excellent examples ranging from microchipping to cat bowls and cat litter boxes. In contrast, other cat-related expenses such as food and healthcare will be incurred again and again in subsequent periods. The exact cost of cat ownership can see significant difference from cat to cat as well as from region to region, but it isn’t uncommon to see it range from the mid hundreds to the low thousands on an annual basis. Fortunately, if interested individuals are unsure about the cost of cat ownership, they should be able to come up with an excellent estimate by drawing up a list of the necessary expenditures before checking the prices for each one of them.
You Have the Spare Time
Cats need a fair amount of exercise on a regular basis in order to ensure their continuing well-being. After all, it provides them with both physical stimulation and mental stimulation, which is very important because a bored cat is a troublemaking cat. This is an issue because bored cats will create their own entertainment, thus causing them to climb curtains, play with rolls of toilet paper, and engage in other undesirable activities. In any case, would-be cat owners need to make sure that they have the spare time needed to take care of their cat’s day-to-day needs for exercise. Some people might choose to teach their cat to walk on a leash, whereas other people might choose something that can happen in their own home. Whatever the case, providing a cat with regular exercise is vital, particularly since play-time is also a great way for some cat-cat owner bonding.
You Understand the Importance of Socialization
There are a lot of people out there who believe that cats are anti-social creatures. Certainly, one could say that cats aren’t social in the same way as dogs, but that isn’t the same as saying that cats aren’t social at all. Having said that, cats need proper socialization if cat owners want them to do their best, which means another major demand for their time. Generally speaking, this can be done by exposing a cat to new people, new sounds, new smells, and other new stimuli while rewarding them with treats as well as praise, thus encouraging them to become less cautious of new experiences. A lot of cats can seem rather skittish because of their fondness for hiding when they are feeling less than confident, but this is something that can be lessened over time so long as interested individuals are willing to put in the effort.
You Have Created a Cat-Friendly Home
Speaking of which, those who want a cat should consider turning their home into a cat-friendly home. For the most part, there are two aspects to this. One, interested individuals should make sure that they have toys as well as other tools with which to offer their cat a better experience. In part, this is because a happy cat makes for a healthy cat. However, it should be remembered that this can be very practical as well. For instance, having either a scratching pad or a scratching post is very important for providing cats with a way to keep their claws sharp without using them on something more valuable. Something that is necessary because cats are so reliant on their claws for such a wide range of activities. Besides, there is also the importance of cat-proofing a home because there is a wide range of potential threats that are harmless to adult humans but can be much more problematic for cats. At the very least, interested individuals should scour their home for items that can wind up poisoning a cat, meaning that this is a topic that they should look into sooner rather than later.
You Are Willing to Handle the Less Pleasant Parts of Cat Ownership
Most things in life come with both upsides and downsides. On the whole, cat ownership can be very rewarding, but it is definitely not an exception to this particular rule. For example, if someone wants to own a cat, they need to be prepared to take care of all of the less pleasant parts of owning a cat. One excellent example would be cleaning out a cat litter box because interested individuals can expect to do so for a very long time to come. Something that is particularly true if someone is thinking about having more than one cat because the general recommendation is not one but two litter boxes for every cat, which should reduce the chances of them coming into conflict with one another. If would-be cat owners are not prepared to handle this as well as other tasks, they are not ready to own a cat.
You Are Committed for the Long Run
Cats can expect to live into their teens. In fact, it is common for them to make it to their early 20s, with a small number managing to live even longer than that. Based on this, it should come as no surprise to learn that cat ownership is a long-term commitment, meaning that people shouldn’t get a cat unless they are willing to take care of them for many years to come. Yes, there is always a chance that a cat owner will be forced to give their cat away because of something unforeseeable coming up. However, interested individuals should definitely not be already thinking about giving their cat away when they choose to get them.