When you decide to adopt a cat, you think about what kind of cat you want. This isn't just a question of choosing a breed; you also have to think about the cat's age. While some people want to adopt a kitten or young cat, others prefer older pets. What are the benefits of adopting an elderly cat?
1. Elderly Cats Take Less Work
If you adopt a kitten, then you have to do some work to train your pet. For example, kittens may need to be litter trained. You also need to spend more time looking after younger cats.
Kittens may need to be fed a special diet of small meals more regularly through the day than older cats. Juvenile cats may need monitoring to make sure they don't wreck your home.
Once a cat is past the kitten stage, they have a lot of energy, which they may get rid of by clawing your furniture, climbing on shelves, or climbing up and down your curtains.
Elderly cats are generally house trained, eat a couple of meals a day and have less energy to burn. They're much lower-maintenance than younger cats.
2. Elderly Cats Are Better if You Work
When you adopt a kitten, you effectively become its parent. If you go out to work every day, then leaving the kitten can be a problem. Kittens need fairly constant company to be happy; they may get distressed if they are on their own for long periods.
Elderly cats are a better fit with working owners. While they may like you being around, they don't need company all the time. They'll be happy pottering in and out of their cat flap and relaxing when you aren't at home.
3. Elderly Cats May Have No Other Options
People tend to prefer to adopt kittens and younger cats. Elderly cats are often at the back of the adoption queue. If an older cat is lucky, then it will live out its days in a no-kill shelter.
However, if it isn't lucky, then an elderly cat may be euthanised if nobody adopts it. You could be the only option the cat has to live in a home again.
While elderly cat adoption has benefits, there is a downside. Older cats are more likely to get sick or to have long-term medical problems. If the cat doesn't come with a medical record, then you won't know how healthy it is.
To check on its health first, ask your local vet to give the cat a medical. This will help you decide if the cat is healthy enough to adopt.