Written by Melissa Lapierre; Photos courtesy St. Francis Society Animal Rescue
Giving a forever home to a cat in need is one of the most wonderfully rewarding things a person can do, but did you know that life can be even better when you adopt a pair?
Kitten season is here – in some parts of the country it never ends – and if your heart is set on bringing home that adorable little fuzz ball, why not consider adopting two kittens?
I know exactly what you’re thinking – kittens are a lot of work, why would I want double the trouble? But that isn’t the case at all. If anything, quite the opposite is true. Adopting two kittens at the same time will require less effort from you because they will keep each other stimulated and tire each other out. This is especially important if you work long hours and can’t devote time to constantly keeping kittens engaged.
A bored kitten is a recipe for disaster. Left to their own devices they are sure to find dangerous and destructive activities to keep themselves occupied – climbing drapes, scratching furniture, chewing plants and electrical cords, making toys out of items that shouldn’t be.
Two kittens are more likely to have fun wrestling and chasing each other around the house, instead of getting into things they shouldn’t. This isn’t to say you don’t still need to kitten proof the house and keep an eagle eye on them, but at least you’ll be better able to carry on the business of your daily life knowing they have a healthy outlet for their boundless energy. You’ll get more sleep at night too!
And throw out all those silly misconceptions you’ve heard about cats being solitary, self-sufficient creatures. Most cats are highly social and thrive living with living with other cats, and even other species, for that matter. A crucial part of being a responsible cat parent is finding ways to enrich their lives, and one of the best ways to do that is by providing them with a companion.
Rather than having an isolated pet, adopting two cats will allow them to grow up as best friends. Kittens learn a lot in the first months of life from copying their mothers and siblings, and while separating a kitten from its mother is a necessary part of the adoption process, removing them from their litter mates can have a detrimental delay on their development.
Learning boundaries, how to communicate, interpreting signals, sharing territory, even knowing how hard to bite when playing and navigating their environment, are all educational opportunities to develop important social skills that will be needed as they grow.
Using the litter box, scratching posts, and grooming routines become easier when a kitten can copy their companion. It may even help with pickiness when it comes to food. A cat is more likely to eat something that their buddy is eating! Having two kittens will aid in the development of both youngsters, leading to happier, healthier, better socialized pets.
And honestly, is there anything cuter than watching a pair of kittens play and cuddle together? You won’t want to spend your day doing anything else!
Likewise, the next time you’re in the market to add a new furry family member, consider bringing home a bonded pair. Even if you choose two cats who aren’t familiar with each other, the best time to introduce them is when you’re also introducing them to a new environment. Starting a new life together is going to end up much easier in the long run than adding a second cat down the road if the first cat becomes territorial.
Think of it as saving four lives – the two cats you’re adopting, and the two that can take their place at the shelter!