Saturday, October 29th is National Cat Day. Yay! Nationalcatday.com. This holiday was set up not only to celebrate our feline friends, (who are SO neglected on the Internet) but to them forever homes as well. Sadly, as many as 4 million cats are sent to shelters every year with somewhere between 1-2 million being euthanized. So here’s a plug for feline adoption. No cats aren’t trained to be rescue animals like Certain Animals Who Will Not be Named. But they are proven to lower blood pressure, provide free entertainment, and be a source of endless snuggles and warmth. I myself live with two fabulous kitties who are roaming around getting into mischief even as I write this. I adopted both my cats as full blown adults rather than kittens and I would like to urge anyone thinking of becoming a cat parent themselves to consider doing the same. Here’s why:
- Older cats are much more likely to already be litter box trained so that’s one hassle you won’t have to deal with.
- Kittens while adorable are notoriously hyperactive and ingenious at getting into trouble. More mature felines tend to be a LOT calmer and more interested in finding soft places to sleep rather than say climbing the curtains.
- You already know what the cat’s personality adult personality is. Many a gorgeous adorable kitten has grown into My Cat From Hell. Adopt an adult cat and their temperament will already be settled.
- Grown cats at shelters may well already have been spayed, neutered, chipped, etc. so you won’t have to bother.
- It’s much more difficult for older cats to find homes. Traditionally it’s never too hard finding homes for adorable newborn kittens. Indeed many shelters often have a waiting list for people looking for kittens. But older cats find it much harder to be adopted and are thus at far greater risk. The first cat I adopted Ebony, was at least seven years old when I met her at Washington Animal Rescue League. Her previous owner had passed away and she’d been at the shelter for nearly six months before I adopted her. My second cat Nena, was a three year old who’s human developed allergies. Despite being breathtakingly beautiful, Nena had gone unclaimed for several months at the Humane Society and there were other cats who’d been there a year living in small cages with roommates.
Whether you go for a kitten or a cat though, ultimately the point of National Cat Day, is to bring some cuddles and purrs into the lives of those who are cat-deprived, while we proud cat parents celebrate our furry overlords…er friends.
Top photo from Bigstock.