10 Reasons to Get a Cat
Furry family members are, to put it mildly, the best. Many studies suggest that having pets is emotionally beneficial to humans, and with 7.6 million animals in shelters needing homes, adopting a shelter animal is beneficial to pets as well. I have a deep love for furry companions, no doubt thanks to my upbringing, where three cats and two dogs were the norm (plus birds, frogs, fish.... it was a veritable suburban farm). My current family includes two cats and a dog, so I consider myself fairly well-versed on this subject.
If you have toyed with the idea of getting a pet, I emphatically recommend a kitty. You may be thinking, "but I'm not a cat person," to which I reply, non-cat people are merely those who have not met the right cat. Here are 10 more reasons to consider adopting a kitty.
- You want a soft, cuddly, fur-ball to brighten your life. Cats are the furriest of the critters that will tolerate cuddling. Their soft, fluffy fur is filled with magic and delight.
- There is nothing more relaxing (or possibly healing) than having a purring kitty on your lap. Probably anyone who has ever had a happy cat chill on their lap will tell you how relaxing their purrs are. What makes the cat purr even more glorious is that its frequency of ~25 Hertz is in the range of vibrations that can relieve pain and improve bone density, muscle strength, gait, and balance. So you can think of cats as adorable little wellness-promoting machines.
- You want your furry companion to be clean. Dogs are, let's face it, smelly drool monsters that occasionally dine on feces. Cats are fastidious cleaners, and many of them will never need you to bathe them. Ever. It's so great.
- You would prefer to deal with excrement on your own schedule, as opposed to your pet's. While dogs need to be walked every few hours, kitties will faithfully poop and pee on their own, in a litter box, as long as their human keeps it reasonably tidy (cleaning it once a day generally suffices).
- You do not want to find a pet sitter every time you take an overnight trip. Cats can be wonderfully self-sufficient and can easily take care of themselves for 24-48 hours, provided they have a litter box and enough food and water.
- Cats are hilarious. Kitties are goofy, smart, curious, and fluffy. Hilarity is inevitable. This is evidenced by the sheer number of cat videos on the internet.
- Cats can comfort and love more wholly than many humans. Cats are truly part of the family, with strong love and emotional bonds to match. They can sense when you're down and offer their affection and comfort like few humans can.
- If you want a highly interactive pet, dog-like cats exist. Some cats are surprisingly dog-like; one of our cats fetches, another maintains strongly communicative eye contact, and both go on walks, come when called, and sit on command. Some of this behavior is innate, but undoubtedly some is learned. If you treat your cat like a dog (with training, etc.), they will be shaped by your actions and expectations.
- Though they're independent, the kitties need you. Although dogs outnumber cats in animal shelters, cats are more likely to be euthanized each year than dogs, making them especially in need of adoption.
- You can brag that cat owners are smarter than dog owners. I am in no way suggesting that these contentions are grounded in good science, but hey, it's a thing cat people claim.
Above photo by Lauren Shipp