Buying a cat requires a commitment to provide proper care for it during its life and in the case of kittens this can be for 10-15 years or longer. Too many cats end up in rescue homes due to an owner deciding after buying the cat that they cannot give it the care it needs or cannot cope with the financial commitment of owning a cat so consider these things carefully before buying a kitten or cat.
A cat is not a pet that a child can be expected to be solely responsible for and will need an adult carer. It is important to consider any other pets in the household and all family members when thinking of buying a kitten or cat as a pet to ensure a cat will fit into the lifestyle, routine and environment of the family as a whole. The type of cat suitable for a particular adult or family will vary as different breeds have different personalities and traits and long haired cats will require more care than short haired cats, so the breed of kitten or cat to be purchased also needs careful consideration.
A cat will require:
- Feeding - 4-5 times a day for kittens down to twice a day for cats over 6 months old
- Refreshing water bowl - daily
- Emptying of cat litter tray - daily
- Grooming - daily for long haired cats, weekly for short haired cats
- Interaction and play - daily
- Check for signs of injury or illness - daily
- Flea treatment - monthly
- Worming - monthly for kittens, every 3 months for cats over 6 months old
- Visit to vet for vaccinations - annually
If the cat becomes ill or suffers an injury it is likely to require veterinary treatment. In addition to the costs of any such veterinary treatment the cat may also require additional care and time eg cleaning wounds, administering medicines, regular vet visits, etc. Pet insurance companies do offer insurance cover for pet cats which can help towards the costs of veterinary treatment.
In addition it will be necessary to make plans for someone else to care for the cat when away, eg during family holidays, etc and if there are no friends or family that can undertake to look after the cat during these times then it may be necessary to pay to board the cat elsewhere or pay a pet sitter to pop over each day to look after the cat.