The Humane Society of the United States reports that there are between 6 and 8 million pets in need of good homes. Whether through neglect or abuse, many cats find themselves struggling to survive unaided or left on their own. Rescue homes provide housing for many of these pets, in the hopes of finding them positive living situations with reliable owners. Tragically, over one half of the animals in shelters are euthanized because of limited space in rescue homes. Prospective owners have an opportunity to adopt these pets, and give them a chance to live full and happy lives. Though buying animals from pet shops and individual breeders has been a common way to purchase a pet, cat and dog lovers are encouraged to consider the option of adoption as an alternative possibility.
Here are some reasons to why one should consider adopting a cat:
- By adopting a pet, you help fight cruelty to animals. Abusive or negligent pet owners often are the cause of animals being abandoned on the streets, and left at the mercy of their immediate surroundings. Adopting a pet encourages rescue homes to continue their work, providing shelter to unfortunate and ailing animals.
- Adopting a cat provides an alternative to pet shops and poor health care for animals. Many pet shops source their cats and dogs from mass-breeders who force their pets into repetitive breeding, horrible living conditions, insufficient nutrition and minimal shelter. There they can catch illnesses, develop infections, and aggressive traits and erratic behaviors. When pet adoption increases, pet shops lose business and more animals are able to receive proper care.
- You get a healthy pet! Unlike pet shops animals, rescued dogs and cats are micro-chipped, de-wormed, immunized, given medical attention from vets, and behavioral assessments from professionals. The cat you adopt from a shelter will come with a full disclosure of his medical status, as well as an understanding of his personality and behavior tendencies. You can be certain that your new pet has been given quality health care, and will be ready to settle in to his new home without a glitch.
- You save money! Pet adoption is far cheaper than pet purchasing from a private breeder, as they can demand a premium for purebreds. Adoptions typically cost a set fee of around $100-300 dollars, which is a far cry from the hundreds and thousands breeders frequently ask.
- Adoption provides a variety of cats. There are numerous breeds, colors, shapes and sizes of cats that need to find homes. If you have specific preferences for a type of breed or color cat, the animal shelter staff will help you find a cat to match your expectation.
- Personality assessment and dream matches can be made through adoption. Animal rescue workers spend days observing the behaviors of numerous animals, and can recognize negative traits or habits that need to be corrected. They will listen intently to the kind of companion you are looking for, and will provide insight about which cat in the shelter matches your requests the best. They will then help you understand what kind of attention that cat will need, as you embark on the journey of pet ownership.
- You get a low-maintenance and an independent animal. Adult cats need far less “babysitting” than new kittens, whose small size and lack of house training requires that they be supervised continuously. Adult cats are accustomed to fending for themselves while you are away during long days and working hours. This immediately provides pet owners with freedom in their schedule that would not be possible with a younger pet.
Fostering a Pet: For potential pet-owners who are hesitant to commit to full pet ownership, foster care offers a unique experience with limited responsibility. Instances where pet fostering is necessary, can occur when the animal is a new born in need of protective supervision until the kitty or puppy has reached the age when they can find a permanent home. Foster care can also endure through a short season while a cat is recovering from surgery, or while he is in between shelters and his new living situation. When shelters are struggling with limited space, they will sometimes seek for foster homes for their inhabitants until space in the rescue home opens up. This allows owners to enjoy the company of a pet in need, without having to provide him care for the long term. Though foster pet-parents may often have concerns about housing a cat in this temporary way, rescue home workers are always able to address any questions. By providing a home for a cat, owners are enabling rescue homes and animal shelters to continue their work on a grander scale.