Thinking of giving your cat away? 4 reasons why you should reconsider
I have heard it so many times in my life – “My cat does not get along with my new puppy, looking for a good home for it”, or, “My husband is allergic to my cat… looking for a good home”. This just breaks my heart to be honest. A cat comes with so many responsibilities and is a lifelong commitment. The moment you feel the need to get a cat you need to consider everything that could come your way with this little feline. Don’t let it be an impromptu decision, it is one that should not come lightly, because at the end of the day, if it turns out to not suit your way of life, you will be to blame, but the cat is the one who suffers.
Here are some reasons why you should reconsider the decision of giving your cat away, if you have ever thought as far:
Shelters are inundated with cats
Think of it this way, even if you are trying to find a home for your cat, at some point it will probably end up in a shelter. The shelters are overrun with the amount of cats that come in due to the high reproductive cycle cats have, and the amount of stray cats that are still out there that haven’t been fixed. I’m not going to go into any details here – the fact is, the chances of your little kitty companion being put to death because there is just no space to keep him, is quite high. Can you even imagine this thought? I couldn’t, not for one second. This is why, when we found Scotch outside our gate this past May, I just couldn’t bring myself to give him to anyone else. Not only did I fall head over heels in love with him, but this exact thought crossed my mind. What if I take him to a shelter, he never finds his forever home, us “saving” him from certain death outside our gate is in vein! Please consider this before you make the decision to “find your cat a home”, because the truth is, he will end up in a shelter at some point, this I assure you!
How good is a “good home” really?
“Looking for a good home for my cat” pops up constantly on platforms like Facebook, and my blood runs cold. I really don’t want to sound like a pessimist because I know that if you really try to get a good home for your baby, sometimes you really do find the purrfect one that puts you at ease. But, then again, how sure are you? This is the question for me. There is no home as purrfect as the one he already has. Why not try to make it work rather than to spend so much time looking for this other good home? And if I offend anyone with this blog, please understand from where it is coming from. There are so many cats that need homes, and if one already has one, but the humans are put out for whatever reason, the effort to try to minimise the issues is less than trying to find another home. This is just my opinion. I cannot stress it enough, your home is the best home for your kitty, if you love him as much as I love mine, they are good, they are happy, they are settled. Cats hate change, they hate new routines, this will upset them so much, why put them through that?
What is the real reason?
So you’ve put up the ad for your cat to find a good home. You’ve waited weeks for someone to respond. Someone who in your view is good enough for your kitty to go to forever. You’re just not satisfied with the messages you’ve received so far. So you sit back, look at your kitty and cry at the thought that he will not be in your life anymore. Thankfully I have never felt this. I have felt the pain of losing a cat through death, but never because I had to rehome a cat. Yes, I’ve fostered a kitten before, this is different in my opinion. Finding the kitten a good home is your mission from the very beginning. But when you have given your heart to a cat, then you change your mind for whatever reason, this is treason! You have lied, you have betrayed this cat. What has he done to deserve this fate? He is in love with you, he loves his world with you, and now it is all going to change. For what? What is the real reason? Why is he no longer good enough? Is there no way that you can overcome this? Is there nothing that you can do to minimise the issues you’re experiencing? This brings me to my next point
There are ways to fix it, there are options
Whatever the reason may be that you are deciding to give your cat away, I can tell you this, there are ways that you can fix the issues you’re experiencing. Cats can be trained, routines can be changed, and medicines can be taken. I have the purrfect example:
My husband is allergic to our cats. He was breaking out in rashes, he would have sinus attacks where he could not breath. He went to the doctor; they did blood tests which came back stating that he has an allergy towards animals. So there, immediately I thought, no matter what, he will have a life of medicating because we both want and love animals. Never once did I think of getting “rid” of my cats, and neither did he. We manage it, we control the attacks in any way that we can. How do we do this you might wonder? My husband has allergy tablets with him all the time, but over and above this, he tries not to touch the cats. If he does (which is more often than not) he washes his hands immediately thereafter. The cats are not allowed to sleep on our bed when we are not around. The reason is twofold here because Travis marks on our bed, but since we’ve had them somewhat banned from our bedroom, it has helped with the allergies as well. You see, there are ways to deal with things. If it is a behaviour issue, these are easily manageable as well. Take Travis marking for example. We make sure that we are always around when our room door is open. If he marks and we have failed to do this, we don’t scold him, this does not help. We learn from our mistakes and move on. Scolding a cat does not help, figuring out why the cat is doing it and changing ways to prevent it from happening again is what helps. Once you have this answer, you are able to manage the behaviour or issues. I have done it! It works!
So please reconsider when you even have the thought, the inkling of giving your cat away. He will end up in a shelter, he will end up on the streets, he will end up with a family who does not treat him the way you imagined. There are ways to manage the unwanted things, there are ways to train your cat!! Love them, they are a part of the family after all!
Your cats Body Language are more than words
All felines speak the same language, whether you’re from the snowy hills in Siberia, or the sunny concrete jungles of Johannesburg. All our feline friends speak loudly through their body language. If you take a close look at our domestic cat’s ancestors, namely the big cat for example, lions, tigers and leopards, just to name a few, they all have very similar characteristics.
Over the last couple of months having the privilege of doing some extra research and readings on my favourite animal, the cat, I have come across so many articles, quotes and facts about our feline companions that highlight specifically how special they actually are. Yes, I’ve written about their different personalities, why women generally are attracted to cats more than men and so on. It is clear that our feline friends have some sort of meaning to us that can simply be explained by how they make us feel. So what do our cats really mean to us?