Once you have decided on a cat, you ask yourself whether you should look for it in an animal shelter, from a breeder, or through private offers. Read here what options are available and what you absolutely have to pay attention to.
Once the decision to get a cat is made, it can’t happen fast enough for most people. But as great as the joy of the addition to the family is – you should definitely take your time when choosing. Here you can find out what options you have and what you need to watch out for so that you adopt a healthy, well-socialized cat and don’t fall for pet dealers.
Animal Shelter, Breeder, or Private Offers: You Need to Know That
There are actually only three ways you can adopt a cat: from an animal shelter or from animal welfare, from a cat breeder or you adopt a cat from private offers, such as those advertised in newspapers or on the Internet. There are important decision criteria for each variant.
Adopt a Cat From an Animal Shelter
Countless cats are waiting in animal shelters for a new home. Even if you are looking for a specific breed of cat, it is worth visiting the animal shelter, because pedigree cats also end up there again and again. In general, the selection of cats in the shelter is particularly large. You will usually find cats of all ages and temperaments there. Common prejudices against animal shelter cats, such as that all cats from the animal shelter are shy or have behavioral problems, are unfounded.
The animal shelter employees know the animals from daily contact and can advise you which cat best suits you and your life situation in terms of housing requirements and character. You can also visit the cat at the shelter more often and get to know it better before you take it home. Another plus point: Animal shelter cats are usually already neutered, extensively vaccinated, and are under veterinary control.
Don’t let the upcoming pre- and post-checks worry you. The welfare of the cat should always come first. At these appointments, you also have the opportunity to ask questions about cats and receive valuable tips.
When adopting a shelter cat, a so-called protection fee is due. For cats, this is around 100 euros. The nominal fee is intended to prevent ill-considered spontaneous purchases.
For more information on the benefits, costs, and process of adopting shelter cats, click here.
Get Cat From Breeder
If you have decided on a certain breed of cat and want to adopt a kitten, you can contact a cat breeder. Here it is particularly important to ensure that it is a reputable cat breeder. This is the only way you can be sure that you are adopting a healthy cat and not paying a lot of money to an animal abuser posing as a cat breeder.
- Is the breeder a member of a reputable breed club?
- Does he specialize in breeding a maximum of two breeds?
- Does the mother cat live with the breeder and can visitors be visited?
- Aren’t young animals given up before they are 12 weeks old?
The advantage of choosing a cat from a reputable cattery is that you get a healthy and well-socialized kitten that probably hasn’t had any negative experiences in its life. The breeder will probably be at your disposal throughout the cat’s life for all questions and problems relating to the cat and can give competent advice and tips.
The cat is old enough at the time of delivery, fully vaccinated, and in good general condition. You will also receive papers from a recognized breed club. Please consider: Serious cat breeding has its price. Cheap offers should make you suspicious.
Find a Cat Via Private Offers
Another and quite a frequent source for cats are private offers. Here, however, you have to look very carefully. Unwanted offspring in the owners of a cat lady or farm kittens are often advertised in newspapers and on the internet.
Of course, you can also find a great, healthy cat here that suits you well – but caution is advised. Be sure to find out where the kittens come from, how the mother cat is kept, and what the reason for the sale is. They should insist on being allowed to visit the cats on site. Only believe what you have seen for yourself. Photos can be fake if handover meeting points are suggested, e.g. in parking lots.
Make sure the cat is old enough when you drop it off. She should be allowed to stay with her mother and siblings for at least 12 weeks. In addition, she should already have been examined by a veterinarian and have received the necessary basic vaccinations. These are documented in a yellow vaccination card. The kittens and the mother cat should look well-groomed and healthy and ideally not be afraid of people. Trust your instincts: Does the cat owner really seem to have the best interests of their cats in mind, or does he just want to get rid of the cats and make money from them?
If you want to make an important contribution to cat welfare, insist that the mother cat be neutered. Perhaps you can offer to pay for the mother’s castration costs as payment for the young cat.
It is essential that you refrain from pity purchases in the case of dubious and poor keeping conditions. With a purchase you only support the cat misery – it is better to report such cases to animal welfare.
This is to Be Done Before the Cat Moves In
At the latest when the decision for a cat has been made, you should start furnishing your home cat-friendly – before the cat moves in. Buy a complete set of initial kits for cats and pay attention to quality – otherwise, you will have to spend money again in a few weeks at the latest.
Build a small supply of cat litter and cat food. In order to make it easier for the cat to move into its new home, you should use the food or litter that the cat already knows as a guide. Various toys provide distraction and also lure anxious cats out of their reserve.
After the cat has moved in, take a vacation and time for the animal. This is the best way to get used to it and you will soon be able to enjoy your new cat.