Getting a cat
Finding the right cat for you and your family doesn’t have to be a huge ordeal, but it will require some homework on your part. Here are a few tips to help you get a healthy cat which will fit into your lifestyle.
- First, read up on the different breeds. Each breed has its’ own set of behaviors and health problems. For example, living in a state such as North Dakota, you would not be wise to get a Rex-type of cat and expect it to be an outdoor pet. The Rex cats have very fine wavy fur and would have no protection in the harsh cold of winter. Ragdoll cats are noted for their docile temperament while the Abyssinians have an independent streak.
- Many of the exotic “designer” breeds are on the market. These cats are typically much larger or smaller than the traditional breeds. Be careful with these cats. Many have been developed from breeding our domestic cats to their wild cousins and this often shows up in their behavior and many have additional health issues.
- Getting a kitten allows you to develop the behaviors and habits which suit your needs. On the other hand, a mature cat will usually come with most of the training already done such as using the litter box and staying off the dining table.
- No matter what cat catches your eye, before you make a commitment, make sure it is healthy. The eyes need to be clear as well as the nostrils. The breathing should be regular and quiet. Look around the lips for acne and around the ears for any discoloration. Bulging bellies in kittens may mean worms, but in adult cats it may mean more serious diseases. Have the cat/kitten checked for worms, Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP), Feline Leukemia, Feline AIDS and Toxiplasmosis.