Porky & Buddy’s Pet Health: Adopting Cats

Dear Porky & Buddy,

I have a complaint about the Humane Society. I called them up to inquire about adopting a new kitten but they didn’t have any right then and instead of offering to put me on waiting list or something, the person I spoke to (who was otherwise very nice) tried to talk me into adopting an older cat. But I don’t want an older cat! I want a cute fluffy little kitten! What’s wrong with that?


Dear Lisa,

Where to begin? Let’s start by discussing the problem of you maybe being a little shallow. Are you still cute and fluffy? Did your parents throw you out when you hit adolescence because you weren’t cute anymore? If they did, our apologies and condolences, but assuming they didn’t what lesson did you learn? Sure, kittens are adorable, and have the power to seduce just about any animal-lover, but it’s important to remember that baby animals quickly become adults. The bottom line is that every grown up cat looking for a home used to be a baby—and that grown up cats can be every bit as sweet, cute and playful as their younger counterparts. They are certainly more interesting, just like you are now, as opposed to when you used to be cute and fluffy.

Next topic . . . laziness. Just like their human counterparts, baby animals require an extensive commitment of time and energy from their guardians. Busy schedules and work commitments prevent many Americans from being able to provide the kind of round-the-clock care that younger animals require. Adult cats are more likely to be adept with a litter box, willing to nap while you are gone, capable of keeping themselves fed, and less likely to do something stupid while your are gone. (But don’t misunderstand: Although older cats may be less demanding than kittens, that’s not to say they don’t require pet parents to be responsible and devoted—all animals require a lifelong commitment. But you knew that, didn’t you?)

In addition, adult cats are often a better choice for families with children. Bringing together young kittens and kids can be problematic, as they sometimes exhibit playful clawing, which can injure or frighten children. Kids can inadvertently be too rough with young animals. Basically you can get the worst of both worlds. Adopting a mature cat who you already know interacts well with children can be the best option. It’s hard to determine what a kitten will be like as an adult. In contrast, it’s much easier for potential adopters to get a sense of an older cat’s qualities—including size, temperament, and personality—and to make a more informed decision about what cat would be a good fit for their family.

Now let’s discuss guilt. Helping any homeless animal will always be a natural high for adopters. But those who choose to adopt an adult pet can take extra comfort in knowing that they’re giving a home to an animal who may otherwise be overlooked. As they age, cats especially tend to have an increasingly hard time finding an adoptive family. So giving an older cat a home is an act of compassion for which you get extensive bragging rights, (if you need them).

And here’s how to assuage all that guilt and save money! What could be better than that? For the entire month of June, the Oswego County Humane Society is waiving its adoption fees for all adult cats. On Saturday, June 11th at Fred Raynor Ford, Route 3 West, Fulton, NY, you can meet our “Certified Pre-Owned” better than new cats! And if you adopt a cat that day you will receive a coupon for a free oil change at Fred Raynor Ford and a coupon redeemable for $200 toward the purchase of a car at Raynor Ford.

The Oswego County Humane Society provides spay/neuter services and assistance, fostering and adoption of animals in urgent need, humane education programs, and information and referrals to animal lovers throughout Oswego County. Our office is located at 265 West First Street, Oswego, New York. Phone (315) 207-1070. Email:[email protected] Website: www.oswegohumane.org.