Since 1974, the month of June has been recognized as Adopt-A-Cat Month. In the United States, the greatest numbers of kittens are born in late Spring through early Fall. This is when shelters tend to have a surge in feline intakes during this time. Cats are wonderful creatures, and there are some things to consider for new owners who are looking to adopt a cat or kitten.
Little kittens are so cute, and they are entertaining to watch them bounce around. Some of them are really high-intensity and so full of energy. Do you have the time to devote to adopting a young kitten? It is important that you spend lots of time interacting and helping socialize your new feline friend, and kittens require even more energy. As cute as they are, kittens can be somewhat mischievous for a good couple of years, if you don't think you have the personality to handle it, you might consider adopting an older cat that has settled down a bit.
Just as each person in your household has a personality, individual cats also have their own unique personalities. Picking just the right kitty for your home should be done carefully. Look for the kitty that will get along with everyone in your household, especially if there are children living in the home. Then, be sure to teach young children how to handle a new cat or kitten so that it does not scare either the cat or the child.
How Much Will It Cost?
The actual adoption for a cat from a shelter is often times very affordable, and they are typically already spayed or neutered, have had some veterinary care and have a microchip. Of course your cat will need the basics like a well-balanced food and kitty litter. Even if you plan to keep your cat inside all of the time, it is important to get your cat vaccinated and have an annual well-check by a veterinarian. There are diseases that can be transmitted to your indoor cat by anyone going in and out of the home. It is much less expensive to vaccinate for diseases rather than try to treat them. Your cat (even your indoor only cats) will need a parasiticide especially for fleas and ear mites. Cats are typically such good self-groomers that often times they will ingest a flea before their owner even realizes that there was flea there!
Take Time To Introduce
It can take anywhere from several days to several weeks for a newly adopted cat to relax and start to feel safe in their new surroundings. If you have other pets, introduce them a slowly. It doesn't hurt to let your new cat stay in a cat carrier for a little while especially when there are other pets in the home. Cats usually feel safer when they can hide, so giving them a protected place where they can still see the other pets is a good way to introduce them. Then slowly over time, let them spend a little bit of time, supervised of course, until you are confident they can be safe together.
Enjoy The New Friendship
The time and effort invested in providing a good home for a cat is extremely rewarding. A good family makes a cat's life better, and the benefit is mutual, too. Cat owners tend to sleep better, have healthier hearts and have better coping mechanisms. Besides, it doesn't get much better than feeling a purr-ing kitty on your own chest.