Last Updated on: July 19, 2023 by Crystal Uys
Cats have remained popular pets for thousands of years. They’ve even been worshiped by some ancient civilizations. They’re also kings of internet culture, with numerous photos and videos documenting their cuteness and silly antics.
Living with a cat requires making some significant lifestyle changes, but it’s often an amazing and worthwhile experience. Cats may have a reputation for being aloof and having a mind of their own, but they’re some of the most loyal pets anyone could ask for. So, if you’re considering adopting a new cat, here are some possible benefits you can look forward to.
Top 10 Reasons to Get a Cat:
1. Cats Can Be Lower Maintenance
Compared with dogs, cats tend to be the more low-maintenance pet. They don’t need to be taken outside every day, and you don’t have to worry about issues like finding a good daily doggy daycare or dog walker if you work away from home for long hours. Some cat breeds that have more independent temperaments can be left alone for longer periods of time as long as they have enough food and a clean litter box.
2. Cats Are Good Apartment Pets
You’ll find more apartments willing to house cats than dogs. So, if you’re an apartment dweller, you’ll have a much easier time finding a place that allows you to live with one or two cats. Once you move into a new apartment, you’re less likely to get noise complaints. Cats are much quieter than dogs and don’t have a loud bark. Since they’re typically much smaller and lighter than dogs, your neighbors downstairs won’t complain about loud footsteps or nails clacking against the floorboards.
3. Cats Can Clean Themselves
Some cats with longer hair will require regular brushing to prevent tangles and mats in their coats. However, cats generally have a good habit of self-grooming and don’t really need frequent baths unless they get themselves in a really messy situation. So, you’ll be spending less time grooming and more time on fun things, like playing with toys or taking relaxing naps together.
4. Cats Help Keep Rodents Away
You don’t need an outdoor cat to keep rodents away. Many rodents, like mice and rats, have a keen sense of smell. One study even discovered that mice can detect and distinguish urinary proteins secreted by their natural predators, including cats. So, just having a cat in your home can reduce the risk of rodents entering. Just the smell can discourage them from venturing inside (though it may not). This means that your cat doesn’t necessarily have to be a skilled hunter to keep rodents at bay.
5. Cats Can Have a Positive Effect on Mental Health
Cats can help improve your mental health, and some cats can even have successful careers as therapy animals. Some studies show that cats help owners reduce stress and anxiety. They help people feel less alone and offer unconditional love and a calming presence.
While dog owners are more likely to state that their dogs help them stay physically active, cat owners are more likely to say that their cats offer companionship and reduce stress. Caring for cats can also give people a sense of purpose and help them establish a healthy daily routine.
6. Cats’ Purring Can Be Healing
While more research is required for more conclusive statements, it’s widely speculated that a cat’s purring can have healing or beneficial effects on people. First, a cat’s purr can trigger the release of endorphins that help boost people’s moods. Their purring may also mimic vibration therapy. Some of the speculated benefits of vibration therapy can include reducing joint and muscle pain, boosting metabolism, and alleviating stress.
Whether or not a cat’s purr can actually help with some physical health issues, it can still make people feel better. Cat owners often find themselves feeling happy whenever their cats are feeling happy.
7. Cats Are Self-Sufficient and Affectionate
Cats can be affectionate and develop strong bonds with their family members. However, they’re also quite self-sufficient in the sense that they’re more likely to be able to hold their own than dogs. They can groom themselves and don’t require being taken out for potty breaks.
While they can take care of many of their basic needs, cats are also relational and develop special bonds with their families. They’ll love playing and just being in the same room as you. So, you’ll usually find that a pet cat is the perfect combination of being self-sufficient and affectionate.
8. Cats Are Often More Affordable Than Dogs
While you can expect a cat to take up a considerable portion of your budget, it’s less likely for cat care to be more expensive than dog care. Since cats are generally smaller and eat less than dogs, it’s easier to spend less money on food and treats every month. Cat toys also tend to be cheaper than dog toys, and most cats often have cheaper pet insurance plans than dogs. Since they groom themselves, you won’t have to schedule as many grooming appointments.
9. Cats Teach Children Social Skills
You can find many cat breeds that are gentle and patient with children. Cats with the right temperament may even help children develop their social skills and learn to build strong bonds with others. A study conducted by the University of Missouri College of Veterinary Medicine saw that cats could help children with autism increase empathy and reduce separation anxiety. Many families in this study also reported that the children and cats formed nearly instantaneous bonds, and the cats helped decrease anxiety over time.
10. Adopting Can Help Cat Rescues and Programs
Animal adoption centers and rescues usually have numerous cats ready for adoption. Some may not even have enough housing within their facilities and have to rely on cat foster families. Choosing to adopt a cat can help good organizations give second chances to loving cats that are ready for their forever homes. So, you could help out a good cause while bringing home a new beloved member of the family.
Knowing all these facts, no one can say that cats aren’t capable of showing affection and forming genuine bonds with people. There are many benefits to adopting a cat. So, if you’re interested in caring for a new pet, make sure to include cats in your list of considerations. They have the potential to become loyal and invaluable companions with a whole lot of love to give.
Featured Image Credit: New Africa, Shutterstock
About the author
Cat mom to Ivy – a feisty little rescue kitten that is her one and only child. For now! Throughout her life, she has been introduced to the special love that can be found in the bond with a cat. Having owned multiple felines, she is more than certain that their love is unmatched, unconditional and unlike any other. With a passion to educate the public about everything, there is to know about felines, their behavior, and their unique personalities, Crystal is devoted to making sure that all cats and their owners know the importance of conscious living – and loving!