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@S-Homles-MD cats are totally worth it though 😊
Poor things. 😢 I volunteered for a while at my town's animal shelter and saw first hand the suffering those animals go through. Humans are fucking jerks.
Hey @Condor, glad you're thinking about adopting (and not shopping) a cat. Cats are truly miracles.
Please keep in mind that they like a cat companion (cats are very social contrary to popular belief). If you have any questions regarding cats feel free to ask.
(I hope this doesn't sound rude. That's really not my intention.)
@KittyMeowstika No rudeness perceived :) however I doubt that I'd be able to get 2 cats at once, especially since while my parents have had a couple of cats, this is the first time that I would actually adopt one of my own. Financially it'd be quite the investment, my apartment would need some edits (particularly the bench where there's always some dangerous stuff laying around) and if the cat can't stay inside perhaps also my patio (where currently the cat may be able to get through the bars and fall down 2 floors.. so I'd definitely prefer not to have to deal with that). So yeah lots of work, research and investment involved with adopting one already :') so probably for the time being I'll just keep one and see where it gets me. Out of curiosity, is there any particular cat food or litter that you'd recommend?
@Condor thank you that you keep safety and health in mind. Would the cat be able to play with the other cats? If yes, it could be alright.
For food i recommend high quality wet food. No dry food (because that's totally unsuitable for cats). High quality means at least 65% muscle meat (and listed which type that is like chicken: heart, breast, throat), no grains, no sugar. The more (good) meat the better the Food. In Germany we have a brand called 'real nature: wilderness' which has up to 95% meat. Cats are highly specialised carnivores, so feeding them anything other than their natural diet (meat; rodents, birds, fish) can cause serious health issues and early death. You can feed raw but that involves very much research.
For litter i can't recommend a certain type or brand as each cats likes that different. Some are easy and accept what you provide, some are more special. Keep in mind that it shouldn't dust and it should lump pretty good (easier to clean).
I use cornlitter because it's more ecological. I think it's called 'ecocat' or something.
Provide your little furball lots of sratching space (scrating posts, boxes etc) and cat toys. Maybe you can even train him/her to do commands.
And don't use plastic bowls for feeding. There are certain substances that harm cats. Much better to use metal or pottery.
@KittyMeowstika Thanks for the suggestions.
I highly doubt that I'll be able to afford wet food and will only consider it as an occasional treat, similar to how I treat myself with more expensive alcohol every now and then. Dry food will probably be the only option.. but I'll of course also get the animal shelter's advice on which cats of theirs are used to this. Apparently the shelter that I got to yesterday feeds solely dry food to all their cats so I guess that shouldn't be much of a problem?
For litter, yeah I've heard that sometimes when they're unsatisfied with the litter they excrete outside the litter box. I'll definitely have to keep that in mind, and again ask what they've been using in the animal shelter. As far as I understand so far, some litter clots up better than others, and can therefore be cleaned more easily and preserved better. For the purpose of keeping residual waste low and easing the development of an automated cleaning system (involving servo and some sort of colander - my home supervisor told me about it earlier and actually seems viable as a project) I'd like to go with litter that easily clots and bonds to the cat's excretions though. Perhaps I'll have to try a few brands and see what works best. I'll keep cornlitter in mind though.
Scraping posts should be part of the initial investment yes. Perhaps I'll go with a small one initially (to keep costs manageable) and upgrade along the way. Cat toys are another one.. I've heard that toys with catnip within them are quite good. Perhaps I'll have a look in a local AVEVE store for those.
I'll keep the plastic bowl part in mind as well. Personally I tend to prefer aluminium, which should be much more robust and less feasible for the cat to bite into and eat than a plastic bowl would be. Perhaps when I find a way to melt aluminium I could even cast my own out of beverage cans :3
@Condor (are you able to understand german? If yes i can suggest you a very nice website)
Well, there is no good dry food. Your cat would need to drink ~500ml directly after eating ~80g dry food. No healthy cat does this (they ingest at least 80% of their water demand via food and don't adapt if fed unsuitable food) and even if it would be very dangerous for their kidneys.
Feeding dry food results in bad teeth, liver, kidney and weight problems.
If you're feeding high quality wet food (or at least wet food without sugar and grains) your cat needs much less, will poop less (because dry food is full of plantmatter to keep its form) and you won't be spending so much money on litter.
Feeding good food may seem expensive at first but think about what you really want for your cat.
Example: my boys eat roughly 600g food per day, they are young and very active. This means 1,5 cans. 1 can costs 2€. Thats roughly 105€ for food per month for me (for two cats).
Again part 2.
Litter costs 5€/20l. I need 80-100l a month (because i like to provide them much litter so they can burry their feces). That another 100€
Note that one adult cat normally eats 300g a day.
You should be able to spend at least this per month to be able to keep a cat (prices may vary; use some of your brands and do the math.)
Changing cat food is btw not very hard. My boys are also from a shelter and i got them dryfood and wetfood at the beginning. Placed the dryfood a little bit harder to reach and boom they only eat wetfood (and raw baby chicken) now.
Keep in mind that you need regular vaccines and vet visits. This also costs money.
Small scratching posts may seem nice because they are not very expensive but cats love to climb, strech when scratching and want to watch everything from a high perspective. You can build your own scratching tree (this is cheaper than buying one that would fall apart after a year).
I have an income which is considered "poor" (it's much less than 1000€ after taxes). But the majority of it goes to my cats. I want them to have a good life, to be healthy and happy. (Nice side effect: feeding high quality food definitely decreases vet bills)
At the end of the day it's your cat and you decide what to do with it.
If it's really not possible to keep more than one cat look for an "older" cat which doesn't like/tolerate others.
If you are able to understand german look into katzen-fieber.de . It provides many great tips for new owners.
@KittyMeowstika if you have the budget for it or want to put your pets' livelihood over your own, I greatly respect that.. I really do. However I do not have the budget to give a cat a more refined diet than I give myself, and neither would I ever consider that.. don't get me wrong, I greatly care about any living creature that I take home, be that plants or pets or whatever. However I do not value their livelihood more than I do my own - that's basic pragmatism and survival. I care about them and according to the volunteer at the animal shelter I can very well afford it. Hence why I'm seriously considering getting a cat from there. I wouldn't be able to buy them wet food all the time, but then at the shelter they apparently don't get that either. I'd honestly rather invest in quality entertainment and adaptation of my existing home to be more suitable for a cat, over something as volatile and ridiculously expensive as luxury food.
@Condor shelters can't afford to feed wet food because they rely on people to give them money and need to cover many costs with it (like vet bills, special food for young kitten, meds, litter, upkeep for housing, staff, etc etc).
As i said; it's your cat. I can only tell you what I know and suggest things. It's up to you to follow these suggestions or not.
Will your cat be chipped and registered?
Hey, i know this may seem biased based on me living together with @KittyMeowstika but i beg you to really really consider what you're about to do. You have a limited budget. If you are not able to feed your cat wet food, which is the same as a human eating chips and fast food their whole life, you are not doing your cat any good. It makes them fat and it takes their energy and playfulness. They'll have a higher probability of contracting illnesses and the such which you then need to expensively treat at your local vet. It's a downward spiral. It has been said before that shelters only feed dry foid because they themselves can not afford to do otherwise.
A pet is an expensive investment and you should both be ready to give it what it derves: the best; aswell as having a few hundred bucks laying around for health emergncies as pet clinics and vets literally let your pets die if you can't pay them. That doesn't make them assholes but they need to get paid too.
That's all i wanted to hear. Always good if you can reason with people.
I wish you and your potential future cat the best.