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Why Cats Make the Greatest Pets

It's estimated that more than one and half million adoptable dogs and cats are euthanized in the United States annually simply because too many pets come into shelters with too few people considering pet adoption. And of those statistics, almost 900,000 of those euthanizations are cats, according to the ASPCA. Adopting a cat not only helps one of these many felines looking for a forever home, but also opens up space for shelters and rescue facilities to take in more animals in need.

Adopting a cat is not only a wonderful way to support your local rescue facility, it's also an excellent way to bring some cuddly love into your life.

Here are some of the top reasons why cats make such incredible companions.

They’re Easily the Best Roommate Ever

If you have a laid-back personality, or just like your alone time, cats make the perfect companion. Most cats are happy to snooze on a comfy bed or in a lap all day. Just being in the same room as you is often enough for a cat. And studies show that cat behavior doesn't change in the presence of humans, nor do they require a lot of positive reinforcement from us (or any at all, for that matter)—meaning that they see us less as their masters and more as their companions. Because of their independent nature, our relationship with cats have always been roommate-esque.

They’re Low Maintenance

Cats are naturally independent creatures that require little supervision. They don’t take up much space in a home, nor do they require daily walks, multiple bathroom breaks, or a lot of laborious care, so they make purr-fect roommates. If you live in an apartment, condo, or other small space, a cat can be an excellent companion because they don’t require a lot of room.

And, for a relatively low fee from your local shelter or rescue facility, you can take home a cat that is already spayed or neutered, up-to-date on vaccines, and ready to go with a clean bill of health.

They’re Entertaining

Cats find the greatest joy over the simplest things—mouse toys, cardboard boxes, computer keyboards, hidden crawl spaces and the like. Give a cat a windowsill to perch on, and he’ll spend hours watching the goings-on outside, chirping away as he plots to take over the world and become king of the neighborhood. They’re quirky, often sassy personalities and aloof friendships can leave pet owners entertained for hours—chasing shadows. Knocking stuff off counters. Attacking those pesky laser pointers. Getting stuck in blinds. Cats are good fun.

They’re Self-Cleaning

And that’s a good thing, too. Have you ever tried to corral a cat into a bathtub? Trust us, it’s not a good time. While they may occasionally need help in the bathing department, fortunately cats bathe themselves regularly, leaving you with one less chore. As a matter of fact, cats spend a third of their time cleaning themselves. It’s a win-win for everyone involved.

They’re Beneficial for Your Health

Research shows there are health benefits associated with owning a cat. It’s been proven that having a cat lowers blood pressure and decreases the risk of heart attack and stroke. Moreover, the presence of a cat diminishes loneliness and depression. And, more recently, studies are suggesting that cats’ purrs have been shown to stimulate healing in both cats and humans.

They’re Socially Savvy

Generally speaking, cats are very socially adaptive creatures. Given time, they can live contentedly with kids, other cats, and even dogs. Young cats, like most young animals, are playful, spunky, and high energy, but also much more easily trainable in terms of family temperament. If you’re looking for a companion with a ready-made temperament, then adult cats are ideal. You could find a playful, active cat or a calmer feline who prefers cuddling and a quieter environment. And the benefits of adopting through shelters and rescue facilities is that there are usually an abundance of cats to choose from!

They’re Highly Intelligent

Cats’ notable individuality makes it hard to study their intelligence, and it’s because of this that cats have been given a bad rap. Due to their aloof nature and lack of desire to please their humans, it’s difficult to accurately test cats’ intelligence and aptitude. But, when the scientists did manage to convince the cats to play along, cats performed “nearly as well as dogs” during aptitude testing.

Studies have shown that cats have a brain structure similar to other intelligent animals. In fact, a cat’s brain structure is about 90 percent similar to humans. And, contrary to popular belief, cats CAN learn basic commands. Cats aren’t as likely to be motivated by praise as dogs, and they’re also less instinctively driven to work in partnership with their human companions, but they have the propensity to learn just as well.

They’re Pest Hunters

Cats are easily the world’s cutest pest deterrent. They are skilled hunters that help keep bug populations down in a home, as well as other creepy crawlies—mice, lizards, moths, flies—give a cat a mission and watch her home in with laser focus.

Adopting a cat is one of the most fulfilling and rewarding things you can do. They make excellent companions for just about any type of individual—college students, seniors, singles, and families alike. They’re independent creatures and require very little maintenance, valuing time spent lounging or just snuggling up next to you at night.

And, because cats tend to be more independent and attachment averse than dogs, earning a cat’s love can sometimes seem even more meaningful and rewarding once achieved.

Whatever your preference might be, we’ve got the perfect cat for you at BCARL. And better still, all cat adoptions include spay/neuter surgery, vaccinations, deworming, and an initial wellness exam at one of our participating veterinary practices.

Save a life by adopting a cat today.

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