I think that I should start a business. People always ask me advice on taking care of a cat.
How to properly care for a cat is one thing that you can learn, you need to read. That is where the real trick comes into it. I have been exposed to cats since I was small, but you know what? It wasn’t until I started to actively learn about them that I was able to understand them.
So what if I would start a small business to “teach” people about cats. They can only really learn if they want to. Besides, according to Chrish I would be better off knitting hats for cats.
With that said, keep your money. I’m not in the business of selling you cats. But if you want one, then you should learn what is coming.
I’d recommend getting an adult cat and not a kitten.
The reason being, energy level, socialization problems, and destruction of belongings, will all (in most cases) be more limited with an adult (fixed) cat than with a kitten. Plus kittens just need way more attention that you might be able to give based on your work schedule.
We adopted a 10 year old cat from a shelter two years ago, and I’m so happy we got him and not a kitten. He’s so chill, he is good with people, the only damage he really does is he chews on paper, and he probably wouldn’t have found a home as easily if we hadn’t been open to the idea of getting an older cat.
I don’t think the size of the apartment would be a problem as long as you dedicate some stimulating play time with him or her.
Example, Ragdolls and many long-haired cat breeds tend to be more lazy than super-short-haired (Siamese). But I wouldn’t suggest that you get a cat from a breeder–there are plenty to adopt in the shelters and most of them are mixes. I’d also recommend against a cat that was feral when it was taken–shelters are full of them, you may have to ask for the history to weed these out. I say this because their socialization can be a long, arduous process–sometimes much more difficult than even with kittens.
I would recommend that you look for a cat whose former owners raised it as an indoor cat.
The important part to read in that last sentence is: indoor cat!
As stated, a more mature animal will certainly be better suited for your situation as it won’t be as active and mischievous. That being said – it’s a lottery. You aren’t home a great deal so a needier animal will because distressed. Unfortunately, you likely won’t know if you have a needier animal until it is distressed by your absence.
Older animals also come with history. They may be accustomed to a certain lifestyle that you are not able to provide.
If you have the option to foster the animal to see if it is a good fit, I would encourage that.
Cats, while often fairly self sufficient are a massive responsibility requiring time, care and attention. Evaluate whether or not you have the means or time to properly care for it.
If you do then go for it, otherwise, wait until you are better situated. Your cat will thank you for it! 😺