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Advice to someone thinking about getting a cat?(11 Posts)
This won’t be a rush decision at all but I would love some advice. I’m considering getting a cat. My only child would love a pet and isn’t content with a fish or a hamster. She adores lots of larger animals and is particularly keen on cats. Where to begin?
I have always had rescue cats from the Blue Cross. Cats are either affectionate or aloof! Non pedigree moggies are relatively low cost pets. Mine have always eaten supermarket tinned food and Iams biscuits. About £50/year for vaccinations. £9/day for Cattery when we go away.
Get 2 dcats obviously!
Number one tip is always get insurance! We had a nasty shock without it and wouldn't ever get a cat without it. Other than that we love ours and they've been far less stress than we thought!
Also think of who could take care of them if you're away.
I wouldn't get one just because your kid wants one. Cats are very individual and many are not that affectionate. I have two, both of whom I love dearly but one while fine with adults still won't have anything to do with my DS (or any other children regardless of age) and he is nearly 4 now and very gentle and quiet. The other is like a baby, wants to be cuddled all the time. It's a lottery wrt personality.
Factor in cat sitting/cattery costs and pet insurance - one of mine had a kidney issue which would have cost us a good £2000 if she had not been insured. She now has to be on special food for life too which is mire expensive than the regular stuff. They also need regular check ups and injections.
Will they be indoor or outdoor? Personally I have always had indoor cats (my two both need to be indoors for medical reasons) as can't bear the thought of them being run over. So if you live near a busy main road that is a massive consideration. You also must make sure they are chipped. Fleas are another thing you need to be prepared for - mine get them every year despite not going outside.
I have lived with and loved cats all my life.
A healthy cat is relatively cheap over a year-food (you can buy decent quality food online in bulk), cat litter, annual vaccines and check up, flea and worm treatments, cattery/pet sitter costs. Decent insurance so lifetime cover with a high annual limit (it is very easy for vet bills to add up into the thousands).
I would recommend an adult rescue-all sorts of cats and up in rescues for various reasons. Adults are easier than kittens and their character is formed. Rescues will try and match you with suitable cats for your home and life. The cats will also be vaccinated, chipped, wormed, flead and neutered.
There is information on the Cats Protection website and I think most of the major charity websites have plenty info about what being owned by a cat involves.
I would also make sure you are 100% certain you want a cat and not just because your DC does. Cats do make wonderful companions but it is a big commitment and obviously an old cat may well develop health conditions which you will need to help take care of; then again they may not.
I got an older kitten for my seventh birthday present- still best present I ever got.
Great way to teach children compassion and responsibility. Also great way to destroy your carpets and sofa😻. I got another kitten last year, we absolutely adore her. She is spoilt rotten and rules the house.
Makes going away on trips a little harder, and she is going into a cattery for a few weeks this summer - I will be an emotional wreck.
How old is your daughter?
An adult rescue cat is usually a great choice if you have children (and in general!), as their personality is already formed and you'll pretty much know what to expect. Also much easier than having kittens around and adult cats tend to be calmer and less likely to destroy your curtains!
Other things to consider...
Do you live in a house with access to a garden? Is it a busy road or a safe network of gardens at the back? Could you fit a catflap?
Are you sure no one in the family is allergic?
I don't really think of cats as a "cheap" pet - mine cost £15 per month insurance, £13.50 vet's health plan (includes flea/worming treatments, annual vaccination, a free check up and 10% discount on everything else at the vet's), they eat good quality food (probably works out to at least £1.50 a day) and get through a lot of litter. Plus other things like Pet Remedy plug-ins for my nervous cat, toys and scratching posts, cat sitter or cattery fees when you go away etc.
And obviously think of your long term plans. Cat's can live up to and over 20 years (average is around 15-18 I think).
Get a cat from a rescue centre, preferably not a kitten. That way if the rescue centre is good they will be able to tell you what personality the cat has, what it likes etc That way you can be sure it matches your needs i.e. lapcat and you match its.
Get lifelong pet insurance from a good provider such as PetPlan. Might look expensive but so worth it over the years ime.
One cat needs two litter trays.
Place the water bowl away from the cats food bowl, not together.
The cat will soon rule the roost at your home and you'll never go to the bathroom alone again if you cat will be anything like mine
I always lived with cats as a child - anything between 1 - 4. Loved them! My DC loved our cat, we got when youngest were 5. She was ferocious, but they still loved her! A major part of our family, much missed when she died!
Thank you for replying. My DD is 5. Our back garden is likely to be safe but we live in a busy road area. Would an indoor cat be better?
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