When to Get a Pet

We’ve had a neighbor’s kitten lately just driving my kids crazy. It’s one of 10 from two litters the neighbor’s cat had (yes, she’s been spayed now). They kept this cat and a few other of the kittens, but this one seems to prefer my kids to theirs.

kitten playing

It’s been a bit interesting explaining to my kids why they can’t have their own cat. On the other hand, they’re learning a lot about how to treat a cat.

We currently have no intention of adopting a cat, no matter how many times one runs into the house. Our policy is simple: while we rent, we won’t get a cat or dog. Too hard to move such pets, and giving them away if we have to move just wouldn’t be fair.

By their treatment of the kitten, my kids are certainly ready for a pet. They treat it well for their ages. My daughter has been learning how to pick up a cat. They’re both starting to understand that you do not chase a cat to get its attention.

None of it perfect yet, but good for their ages.

Those are important factors to consider. You can’t get a pet if you aren’t prepared to commit to its care, but you also may not want to get a pet if you aren’t going to teach the kids how best to treat one. A pet is a major commitment.

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3 Responses

  1. rjleaman says:

    I’m glad that you’re making this point. You know how every time Disney comes out with a cute puppy movie, the pet stores and puppy mills start selling the poor animals like hotcakes? A lot of animal rescue groups and shelters are quite concerned – I think with good reason – that all the recent talk about Obama pet plans is likely to cause a whole lot of unplanned and unwise adoptions. And there can’t be a worse time to adopt a pet than in the holiday season… So the more voices of sanity, like yours, the better!

  2. Veronica says:

    Cats are much more effective than pest control when it comes mice/rats. I once owned a cat just to get rid of rodents in my yard, and that thing had no mercy for rodents. Lol!

  3. Stephanie says:

    We’ve been encouraging the neighbor’s cats to enjoy our yard, because we have a definite gopher problem in the front, and rats sometimes in the shed, but so far they haven’t fixed it. We keep hoping, as these are young, under a year old cats just now.