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Wedding Woes

Adopting a Cat

Knottie Warrior 2500 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
edited November 2018 in Wedding Woes
I figure this group probably has a few cat lovers. I’m considering adopting. Pros and cons? My concerns are a litter box in a one bedroom apartment and that I’m gone for 11 hours a day at work, but the pros are all things like love and cuddles so it is hard to decide!

Re: Adopting a Cat

  • I've always had cats and have 2 right now.  I wouldn't worry at all about being gone.  For the litterbox- get one with a cover and put a little mat out front.  Clean it daily and you won't have any issue. 

    Not all cats snuggle.  Mine are not snuggling and are 90% assholes, but they are still funny and I love them. 

  • Get a cat and not a kitten.  They are so much harder to adopt out and sit without homes for longer periods of time.  If you are only going to have one cat, consider one who is FLV+.  Don't worry about being gone - cat won't care.  :) 

  • Warning, I am super biased, lol.  I like cats and dogs.  I have one of each.  Both of them have naturally been well-behaved and are hardly any trouble.

    We've had our cat for about 14-15 years.  We adopted her when she was a kitten.  In all the places we lived with her, they were bigger than one-bedrooms, but not huge.  On average, about 1,000 sq ft.  We kept her litter box in either the kitchen or the bathroom, depending on which space was bigger for wherever we were living at the time.  In our current home (which is the first house I bought), we have a laundry nook next to the kitchen and we keep her litter box there.  We've never been bothered by the litter box.  If it ever has any smell, it's just the smell of the kitty litter poured into it.

    The only problem we've had with our cat is she will get her fixations and claw furniture.  She doesn't claw everything.  But, when she finds something she likes, she will rip the corners to shreds.  In our first place, she clawed up one corner of our mattress.  Just the one, same corner.  But we've had 2-3 mattresses since then and she hasn't touched them.

    Most cats like to spend time with their people, but they are just fine to leave home alone all day.  Before we got our dog, we would even leave our cat home with extra food and water if we went away for the weekend and no one needed to check on her.  With that said, she is a self-feeder.  Not all cats are.

    Generally speaking, cats are more solitary and independent than dogs.  It does make them easier to care for.

    Cats have their own personalities.  And even after all this time, it's still fun to see our cat's little quirks play out.  Some cats are snugglier than others.  But most of them like to have at least some "lap time".  A lot of cats don't like to be picked up and held (while a person is standing) or carried.  But my cat does.  She will even occasionally climb on our shoulder as if to say, "Time to hold me and take me for a ride!" 

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  • Cats are the best! Do it! I had a cat in apartments with no problem. You get used to the bit of mess that comes with the litter box. And if you keep it clean you won't notice any smell. 

    I actually suggest getting two kittens at once so they have a friend to play with when you aren't there. Or an older cat - 1 year or more - who is already trained. Kitten stage is super cute and fun but can be trying. It takes time to get them used to sleeping on your schedule; keep them from clawing furniture etc. 

  • levioosalevioosa Southern California member
    5000 Comments Fifth Anniversary 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    I got Aurora from a rescue and she was perfect. Not the typical cat. I was also looking for a job at the time so I had a few months alone at home with her and that really helped the kitten stage. Our other two were rescued from the back yard. It was never our intention to have more than one. And definitely not three. We’re maxed out on cats. 

    I suggest getting a slightly older or out of kitten-stage cat. I do have to say cats aren’t as aloof as everyone likes to say. They can miss you while you’re gone. But it’s also not like a dog where it’s super limiting to their life to have that much alone time. They sleep for most of the day and if you provide toys and activities they’ll be entertained. Our cats run up to the door and meow when we get home and it’s nice to feel loved walking in the house. One cat in a one bedroom apartment will be fine. If you’re worried about how it looks, and you have a little room in the bathroom, they have litter boxes that look like cabinets that hide the box. And not all litter is created equal so it might take some experimenting to find one that works for you (and the cat, some can be picky). 

    If you go the rescue route (highly suggested!) find a rescue nearby and go visit them. If you want a snuggly cat they’ll be able to point you in the direction of cats who are love bugs. Conversely if you want a cat who is more aloof they can show you those too. 

  • thisismynickname2thisismynickname2 City By The Lake member
    5000 Comments Sixth Anniversary 500 Love Its First Answer
    I'll also add that some adoption websites post pictures and descriptions of their animals so you can review in advance. I feel like if I ever went in person I'd want to take them all home immediately, but with a website, I could say, "Arabella sounds like the right fit for me, so let me go visit her specifically."

    Cats really do have such a range of personalities. My parents have always had at least one at any given time, and each cat was unique. Lazy? Chatty? Cuddly? Playful? Aloof? You can find that out in advance. 

  • Ro041 said:
    Get a cat and not a kitten.  They are so much harder to adopt out and sit without homes for longer periods of time.  If you are only going to have one cat, consider one who is FLV+.  Don't worry about being gone - cat won't care.  :) 
    Oh no way am I even considering a kitten! So cute, so much work. 
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Ninth Anniversary 5000 Comments 500 Love Its First Answer
    I love the kitten stage, but it's so hard! If you're gone 11 hours, it's probably best to look for a cat with a bit of an aloof personality. Our boy cat was a total cuddler and would be miserable if we were gone too long. Most cats are fine for that long with some toys to keep them entertained. DH is convinced that they like music, so he leaves the radio on when we're gone for a while. I do think it's easier with two. They entertain each other. 

    One thing I'll never do again is adopt a long haired cat. I didn't really think much of it when my little girl was a kitten, but now that she's elderly, she has a hard time keeping herself clean. I love her, but I do not enjoy shaving poop dreads off her bum. 
  • Ro041 said:
    Get a cat and not a kitten.  They are so much harder to adopt out and sit without homes for longer periods of time.  If you are only going to have one cat, consider one who is FLV+.  Don't worry about being gone - cat won't care.  :) 
    Oh no way am I even considering a kitten! So cute, so much work. 

    Definitely not trying to talk you out of an adult cat.  It's great and there is more need for those adoptions.

    But did want to add that we adopted our cat when she was an older kitten (4 months).  She was already litter boxed trained.  Though I've heard with cats that using a litterbox is akin to their natural behavior anyway so it is pretty easy to train them.  As opposed to the nightmares I have heard about puppy training, lol.

    She wasn't any more work as a kitten as compared to when she got older.  She was more active and energetic.  But that was just extra adorable, lol.  Not extra work.

    Now I'm reminiscing :).  Back then, she would play a game with us almost every morning as we were first getting up.  She would leave the bedroom and go into the next room.  And "lie in wait" for us on the other side of the door.  As we crossed the threshold, she would JUMP in front of us!  On her hind legs and usually with her little "arms" outstretched.  A super cute "predatory" bundle of fur that was all of 10" high (at the time).  OMG, we would die of laughter and be charmed all over again every time she did it.

    Something else I've read about cats and was true with ours, though each cat's mileage may vary.  Is that the more they are around people, the more likely they are to "talk" to us.  Cats don't naturally make much noise.  But they learn from living with us that noise is how we communicate.  Our cat started out very quiet.  She would go months without making a peep.  She is still a quiet cat, overall, with a quiet voice.  But will meow a few times at us throughout the day.  Especially if she wants something. 

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  • I went looking for a cat.  Found a duo of 5 yos who are FIV+.  Just means biannual vet visits as of yet, 7 years later.  Simon and Garfunkel are some days happy to ignore humans, but on a bad day, they are lap fungus.

    They do have an in home groomer who keeps their long hair from becoming a poopy mess with a breeches trim monthly.

    Garfunkel will churr at you and some gentle meeps.  Simon however likes to chatter at you.  He enjoys hearing about your day or else you'll be reminded.  Loudly.  

    They lived cheerfully in a tiny studio apartment.  They're equally happy with the 3 bedroom house.
  • I've had cats my entire life. People think they're loners, but they really do need companionship. If there's any way you can adopt 2 cats at once, they'd keep each other company while you're at work. This also cuts down on bad behavior, such as furniture shredding.

    If not, it's no big deal. Your cat will adjust to your absence and greet you really enthusiastically when you do come home.

    The PP is correct. Cats don't need a lot of space, and they don't need to go outdoors. In fact, they'll live longer if they don't.

    One of our cats just says "Meh," but the other one yells and swears a lot if we don't do his bidding immediately.

    Don't buy lightweight litter. It gets stuck in their paws and they track it all over the house. They also ingest it while cleaning their paws.

    Go to Lisa Pierson's website (catinfo.org) for some really solid information on cat nutrition.

    You can tell a lot about a cat's personality just from hanging out with him for a half hour or so, so cuddle with a few before adopting one. You probably don't want a lap cat if you're away a lot.

    Budget for annual vet visits, but try to have some room for unexpected expenses. One of our cats developed hyperthyroidism and spent three weeks in the vet hospital while being treated with radioactive iodine. That was $$$$$$.

    Those covered boxes are great. Until they're not. We once had a cat who would get on top of the cover and pee. Yeah. Now we just have an extra high-sided box. 
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