If you landed on this page it means you are looking for a reason to change your life, because that’s what owning a cat means, a life-changing experience that will teach you unconditional love and patience, lots and lots of patience…
But, you’ve come to the right place. I am about to tell you all the reasons why a cat is good for you, your relationships, your health, and your family, and exactly what are the responsibilities of owning a cat. Because having a cat can be very rewarding but also quite challenging.
10 reasons why you should get a cat:
1. Cats are independent and low-maintenance pets
- Cats don’t require as much attention and interaction from you being able to entertain themselves for hours due to their curious nature and even without any toys they will for sure find something to hunt or play with.
- If they have cat food, water, and a litter box they can be left alone with no heartbreak when you leave for work every day. You can even leave your cat alone for a full day.
- Cats don’t require daily exercise walks or any walks for that matter.
- Cats don’t need your constant attention, which will let you relax sometimes without feeling guilty or bad for not having the time or energy for them.
- Cats appreciate your personal space and they also want to have their own personal space and will let you know when they don’t want to be petted, normally retiring in an enclosed space like a cat cave, cat bed, or a box.
2. Cats cost less money and time to care for
- Owning a cat it’s more affordable than owning a dog because cats require less food, fewer toys, and almost no grooming costs.
- Even pedigree cats cost less than a pedigree dog (depending on the size of the breed of course)
- In general adoption fees are smaller for cars and kittens, especially during the hot months when shelters tend to get overflowed with kittens during kitten season
- Cats toys are cheaper and very easy to do at home yourself, plus they would rather sit in a box than in an expensive plush bed. My cats like to play with old cables, hair ties, scrunched-up paper, and bottle caps, they are easily entertained by whatever they can find.
3. Cats adapt to any place, even small apartments
- Cats require less space which makes them ideal apartment pets
- Having a cat teaches you how to take advantage of your vertical space, just get them a cat tree or a window perch and they will be more than happy to just sleep on it all day.
- Cats adapt easily to small places if you give them vertical space to climb on, like some cat shelves especially as most cats like to watch the World from above.
4. Cats are perfectly happy being indoor pets
- Cats are much safer inside and can be content with living indoors only as long as they have everything they need, freshwater, food, a litter tray, and toys.
- They sleep on average about 15 hours every day, and half of their waking hours they clean themselves leaving them little time to want to venture out.
- Cats that are spayed or neutered don’t even try to venture out anymore
5. Cats are quiet(er)
- Cats normally meow when they are hungry and can get insistent, but even the loudest meows are still quiet compared to a dog barking.
- Most landlords allow cats as pets in their rental agreements as cats are generally quiet.
- Cats do make noises, especially at night when they are most active, running around like crazy and knocking things off surfaces, sometimes running for no reason from room to room at 3 am, but these noises are still quieter overall.
- Because they sleep most of the day and are quiet which makes them ideal pets if you work from home or have children sleeping during the day.
- You will never get complaints from your neighbors that your cat meows too much because meows are cute no matter how loud they are.
6. Cats are clean
- Cats don’t need grooming or baths as they are self-grooming, saving you time, money, and energy.
- Cats spend more than half of their waking hours grooming themselves
- Unless they get in some kind of a dirty mess, you rarely have to bathe your cat
- Cats don’t smell and feel softer and cleaner when you touch them.
- You still have to groom your cat with a brush from time to time, even if it’s short-haired to help keep its fur untangled. Most long-haired cats require more regular grooming because they are prone to fur mats, but getting a detangler spray and a good brush should make it a time saver. But even long-haired cats require less grooming than a dog.
7. Cats don’t need any training
- Felines are already potty trained by their mother by the time they are weaned
- In case they don’t learn their potty habits from their mother, a pure instinct will kick in once they get into a litter box since kittenhood, so there is no need to take them out for ‘bathroom’ walks multiple times per day.
- Cats do their needs alone, no need for waiting around, you just need to clean their litter box once per day.
- Once your cat is potty trained she can stay at home unsupervised for hours and you won’t come home to find any “accidents”, except maybe some purrfectly timed hairballs on your carpet, but not on the floor.
- Cats can be trained, but require more patience and perseverance than a dog because they are stubborn and free-spirited. According to studies, cats are very intelligent. They are constantly learning and have an excellent memory, but they are not good at obeying commands. Better stick to just establishing boundaries than trying to train a cat.
8. Cats are efficient pest control managers
- Cats are natural-born predators and they like to hunt anything that moves, from small insects to rodents, and even your toes under the blanket.
- They provide protection to your house killing any flies, moths, spiders, bugs, and mice.
- Just owning a cat can keep mice at bay as their scent acts as a repellent to such vermin
- Cats make cute ‘ekkeekk’ chirping noises when stalking flies and bugs, these sounds are excitement noises that are guaranteed to make you laugh,
- If you are really loved by your cat and she considers you part of her ‘pride’ she will bring you the ‘trophy hunt’ as a present, whether it may be a dead mouse or a wilted tree leaf.
9. Cats have longer lifespans
- Losing a pet is heartbreaking, but compared to other pets cats have a longer life expectancy with an average of 12 years of life which is somehow comforting.
- Spayed and neutered cats even live longer, some cats can live up to 30 years.
- The life lifespan of an indoor cat is typically about 16.9 years.
10. Cats keep you entertained
- Cats provide great entertainment with their goofy and curious nature. Cats love to play. They chase and pounce on things, stumble and fall, try to get in stuff they don’t fit in, chirp at birds and bugs, stare at walls, unroll toilet paper, drink from the sink, have the zoomies out of nowhere, and so on.
- You will never get bored with a cat, and having two makes it even more entertaining as they have a fun way of playing and play-fighting together.
- Cats are fun to play with, sometimes even being entertained by simple toys like a bottle cap or a shoelace, and some cat breeds have dog-like personalities and play fetch without you even training them. My Dot plates fetch with hair ties.
- Cats have playful moods that help them release the energy normally stored for hunting
But wait, it gets even better!
If I haven’t convinced you yet with all the reasons why you should get a cat mentioned above, you should know that owning a cat also comes with serious benefits for your physical and mental health!
5 health benefits of owning a cat
1. Cats improve your mental health
- Just petting a cat will make your brain release endorphins which will make you instantly happier, and bring down your stress levels, heart rate, and blood pressure.
- A cat’s purr is therapeutic and comforting, lowers stress and anxiety, and offers a calming effect even for people that have sleeping problems.
- Cats help cope with loneliness in people that struggle with opening up to others, letting them feel the unconditional love they need but have a hard time receiving from other people.
2. Owning cats will lower your risk of heart diseases
- According to researchers at the University of Minnesota’s Stroke Institute in Minneapolis, after studying more than 4000 people for more than 4 years, owning a cat can considerably reduce the risk of having a heart attack by one-third. The study began in 1976 with 4,435 Americans between the ages of 30 to 75 years old, of which 2,435 people owned a cat or had owned one previously and 2,000 people never owned a cat in their life. After a 10 year follow-up period, cat owners had a 30% lower risk of a heart attack compared to people that did not have a cat.
3. A cat’s purr can literally heal your bones and wounds
- Researchers pointed out that cats don’t purr only when they are fed or stroked, or when they are nursing kittens, they also purr when they are stressed, injured, whilst giving birth, or while they are dying, which means purring helps them heal themselves.
- The purring frequency of a cat ranges between 25 and 150 Hertz which are healing frequencies. Various research on these frequencies has shown that a frequency of exactly 25 Hertz and 50 Hertz improve bone density and growth and aid fracture healing. A cat’s purr also helps with muscle growth and repair, infections, swelling and pain, healing wounds, tendon repair, and joint mobility. Who knew that the cat purrs have healing powers!
4. A cat’s purr relieves symptoms of dyspnea
- Dyspnea is a breathing difficulty that can be described as shortness of breath or labored breathing. A cat’s purr decreases the symptoms of dyspnea by mimicking breathing in and out, giving you an example of how to breathe and calm down.
5. Cats can prevent allergies
- Exposure to cats as a young child helps strengthen the immune system and prevents you from developing allergies later in life, and not just pet allergies, but all kinds of other common allergies. Unfortunately, it might be too late for you now as an adult, but if you have a baby on the way…
Now that you know all these amazing facts about owning a cat, guess what makes owning a cat better than owning a dog!
Reasons why you should get a cat instead of a dog
Focusing on the generalities, cats win the competition of being a better pet.
They are more affordable than a dog and require less time and energy to care for. But some of these comparisons do not apply to every pet as every individual is special in its own way depending on their temperament, breed, and history. Before you adopt a pet make sure you do thorough research on its behavior if possible.
Cats are to dogs what modern people are to the people we used to have. Cats are slimmer, cleaner, more attractive, disloyal, and lazy. It’s easy to understand why the cat has eclipsed the dog as modern America’s favorite pet. People like pets to possess the same qualities they do. Cats are irresponsible and recognize no authority yet are completely dependent on others for their material needs. Cats cannot be made to do anything useful. Cats are mean for the fun of it. In fact, cats possess so many of the same qualities as some people (expensive girlfriends, for instance) that it’s often hard to tell the people and the cats apart.
– P.J. O’Rourke
Cats love differently than dogs
Cats are very affectionate but on their own terms. A cat’s love it’s not like a dog’s love, they chose a person and that person gets all their trust, although still interacting with other people and pets, a cat will always have its favorite human, and that’s why when a cat loves you it feels so special. Let’s be honest, dogs love everybody. You will never see your cat give your friends the same licks she gives you and would be so happy to see them and play with them, but a dog definitely would. Cats love you with a special adoration and a mysterious charm, they are very protective by nature and get attached to their owner.
Cats are less needy
Cats are independent and can take care of themselves relying on humans just for food and eventual vet visits. They don’t need constant attention and can entertain themselves whilst you are out. They clean themselves and don’t require regular baths because they smell but they need some grooming from time to time, especially long-haired cats who tend to get tangled fur. Cats do their needs alone without having to walk them and don’t need exercise as they exercise while playing. Dogs require between one to two hours of undivided attention from you every day being pack animals and not doing well on their own. Cats are quite happy to spend time on their own.
Cats cost less to care for than dogs
Being relatively smaller than most dog breeds, cats require less food, toys, and no trips to the groomer. Plus it’s less likely that a cat will destroy your house while you are at work. Dogs chew stuff and need more toy replacements that cost more than cat toys being made of much tougher materials. If you have a full-time job and are unable to get your dog on walks, paying a dog walker can cost a little fortune from 15$ to 20$ for just a 20-minute walk. Cats would choose a nap over a walk at any time. Cats provided for their basic needs, food, water, and a litter box, can be left alone for a day or two, but a dog can not be left alone for more than 8 hours which sometimes will result in hiring a dog sitter.
Cats are ideal for apartment living
Landlords usually favor cats over dogs as pets because they do not bark and don’t get complaints from neighbors. Cats occupy less space and make use of your vertical space, so they are ideal even for small apartments. Because cats use a litter box it’s easy to live with a cat in an upper floor apartment without having to take it out for bathroom walls a few times per day. Dogs generally require larger apartments preferably with a big terrace or a backyard where they can run around.
Owning a cat lets you still have time to yourself
Because cats are self-sufficient and don’t require lots of attention and interaction from you, letting you enjoy some free time without feeling guilty for not giving them your time and energy when you don’t feel like it. They are more than happy to just curl in your lap and sleep while you read a book or do home office. Whilst a dog would nudge you, follow you around and expect you to give it all your attention.
Cats are good for your health
Both cats and dogs are good at keeping you happy and reduce feelings of loneliness, lowering blood pressure levels, and improving responses to stress. But cats have a bigger impact on one’s health because of their purr. The purr of a cat has been scientifically linked to calming a human’s nervous system, decreasing stress and anxiety, improving sleep quality, lowering the risk of heart disease and strokes, and helping heal fractured bones, and open wounds faster. Having a cat can also reduce your cortisol levels that help relieve stress. Plus, introducing a cat to a baby in the first years of its life will help develop a better immune system and guard against future allergies and breathing issues. But a dog is said to make you more active and sociable due to the constant walks it requires daily.
Good reasons NOT to get a cat
You are not ready
As independent as cats are, you still can not leave them alone for more than two days tops.
A pet, no matter if a cat or a dog requires attention, love, and time. Cats also require a litter box and litter in addition to the basic necessities of water and food. You need to be ready for the responsibility of the life you are caring for.
If you are allergic to cats, it can be difficult to live with one as a pet with swollen, red, itchy, and watery eyes and nasal congestion. Make sure your life would not become more difficult and you will end up resenting the cat in the process or have to give it up. If you are allergic to cats but still want to own a cat, opt for a hairless breed like the Sphynx.
You may lose some of your smell over time
From personal experience, cleaning a cat’s litter box for many years, especially when owning multiple cats and the tray fills faster will affect your smell over time. After cleaning cat litter trays for over six years now, because of the strong ammonia smell from the cat’s pee I lost some of my sense of smell. Sometimes it’s truly a blessing but sometimes it can make you unaware of certain smells. Pro-tip, get a good type of cat litter!
You need to replace scratched furniture
Cats need to constantly scratch stuff, it’s in their nature! And no matter how many scratch posts you buy for them, the sofa will always be a good place to sharpen their claws. So wherever you live, whether you own a house or you rent it, you will not have a nice sofa set, ever! Owning a cat, in particular, makes it difficult to find a good place to rent because most landlords will know that a cat will cause damage by scratching furniture. Be prepared to pay some more deposits in advance, or replace furniture if you want to rent a place with a cat.
They keep you up at night
Although it is believed that cats are nocturnal animals and they are active mostly in the nighttime, they are also pretty crepuscular creatures, which means they are active mostly in the dawn and dusk times when the sun is either rising or setting. They will make noises, try to wake you up asking for food, scratch the door of your bedroom, meow for attention, have the zoomies at 3 am for no reason, and the list goes on. Not all cats are like this, but I thought you should at least know because mine are and so they got their own room in the house, where we can keep them far away from our bedroom door at night!
Cats are independent zen masters that help you relax with their meowgical purrs and make you forget all your worries for a while and whilst they are good for your mental health, they also improve your physical health. They bring out good entertainment when you least expect it. They are quiet and adorable, and just when you think they can’t get any more boring they surprise you with some crazy ninja moves and zoomies all over the house, that will definitely make you laugh.
But don’t be fooled. Cats have the ability to either bring the monk out in you or make you think you’ve just met the Devil. They can be mischievous and stubborn, and they always manage to get their way.
Never make the mistake of thinking you own a cat because from the moment you bring it home, she is your master and she will have you trained in just a few days.
But as many cat owners know, there is no greater pleasure than being owned by a cat.
Let us know what are your thoughts about owning a cat in the comments below, we would like to hear from you.