By Danielle from Ark on the Edge
Over the last 4 weeks here at Ark on the Edge rescue centre we have seen a massive increase in the number of elderly cats being adopted. To name just a few: Pod, a 16 year old stray, Suki a 10 year old female black cat, Leo and Barley 10 year old ginger brothers and Binx 10 year old black female stray
So do older cats make better pets? Well, it depends on YOU! Older cats have a defined personality – which sometimes cannot be seen in young kittens until they get a bit older; Older cats tend to be fully litter trained; older cats tend to be less maintence than kittens (who usually have to watched as closely as hawks!)
When someone comes to my centre and they have never owned a cat before, they usually say something along the lines of “I’d like a kitten, so I can teach it right from wrong as its growing up”; however, I tend to recommend older cats for people who have never owned a cat, just from personal experience myself – my first cat was a 16 year old female with hyperthyroidism called Queenie (she is still going strong with me at almost 18 years old) and she taught me an awful lot on how to look after cats and she is no trouble!
Now, don’t get me wrong here – I’m not a kitten hater! Lol. But I think sometimes people don’t realise the amount of effort that goes into raising and looking after a kitten; most of the time, they haven’t quite worked out how to use their claws and teeth without unintentially hurting during play and they require an awful lot of attention as they can get themselves into a few scrapes.
Of course, this can happen with any cat of any age, but getting into scrapes tends to be more common with kittens (we once had a lady who had to call the fire bridgade out because a kitten had gone up her chimney and was refusing to come down!)
Kittens make fantastic pets, for people that have the time and drive into caring for them. And they are incredibly funny to watch rushing around at the speed of light; after some random thing that has caught their attention, and of course the joy, to have an animal from the very beginning of its life, to the very end is a wonderful; kittens normally are adopted like hot cakes. And yet the older ones, are always overlooked. Yes, older cats have their issues also; but I’d be interested to hear stories of your cats.
Associated page: DYLAN The Fundraising Rescue Cat