When the hectic day comes to an end,
I rush home to my furry friend.
She beats me to my easy chair;
then kind and comforting and cunning,
she parks herself upon my lap,
but leaves her motor running. -John Engle
each of us is blessed with only one life, why not live it with a
Robert Stearns. Pittsburgh Press
For the elderly or those with busy lifestyles, the cat provides
affection without the demands of exercise and training required
by dog ownership. However, since cats tend to live long lives it
is still necessary to ensure that you will be able to provide the
cat with the comforts and necessities of life for quite a considerable
Cats give 'contact comfort' which is often missing from the lives
of the elderly, lonely or handicapped but it also something from
which young children derive great pleasure. Quiet moments watching
television or reading a book are much more pleasurable when shared
with a cat.
Children often prefer to obtain a kitten as they are captivated
by the play behaviour of kittens, however very young children need
parental supervision when handling kittens to ensure that they do
not inadvertently hurt the kitten by cuddling too hard or dropping
For the elderly, an older cat may be a very suitable selection and
animal welfare shelters often have lovely older cats just waiting
for someone to love.
For the busy families an older cat may be easier to manage than
a young kitten which will need more frequent meals, training and
company than an older cat.
With any older cat, it will take a little time for it to become
attached to its new home and owner. Any cat taken into a new situation
needs to be confined indoors for a minimum of two weeks or until
it is obvious that the cat is well settled and adjusted and considers
it is 'at home'. If allowed outside too early the cat may try and
return to its old home.
Many people obtain an older cat when it decides to 'adopt' them.
Some of these cats may have been traumatised and/or learnt to distrust
humans and may take some months before they allow close contact.
Cats cannot be forced into a relationship or dominated, and unlike
dogs, it is difficult to buy their love. Trying to force your friendship
on a cat usually makes it retreat, but by observing the distance
to which the cat will allow you to approach without it retreating
and then not violating this space, regularly placing food and water
at this 'boundary', speaking quietly to the cat as you move about
it will usually choose to approach you.
Some cats will always retain a facade of independence but once given,
their love and loyalty means you have a lifelong companion..