older catI still remember Katy Kitten who came to live at my sister’s house when she was seventeen years old. Her elderly owner had died, and no one wanted her. It had seemed she, too, would soon be crossing the Rainbow Bridge. Katy lived for another three years, an eccentric old lady who enjoyed sitting on someone’s lap, seeming to understand she’d been given a second chance and full of love and purrs.

Mature cats offer so many advantages and yet they are too often overlooked in favour of a cute kitten. They are calm and experienced, wise in the way of litter boxes and food likes and dislikes, content to rest quietly while you’re away from home. Kittens, adorable as they are, are livewires on four legs and it takes time to teach them how to behave.

With an older cat you know what you are getting. As we feline slaves know, every cat has a distinct personality and there could be a potentially docile sweetie and a ‘difficult’ kitten in the same litter. One might grow up bold as brass, another shy and disliking any company but you. A mature cat, which has usually lived among humans, will have her history and be settled into her personality by the time she comes into your life.

A cat that has entered her teens is the perfect companion for those who are less mobile or enjoy the quiet life and the pleasure of giving these animals gentle love and attention. Not to mention seniors will be far less destructive and demanding than a tiny ball of fluff and mischief. While kittens are probably the prettiest things in creation, lovable for their antics, the bond between an older cat and her human is so often incredibly strong. These easy-going seniors will offer loads of love and devotion in return.

If you are thinking of adding a cat to a house that already has older animals, a more mature cat will be a wise choice. Introducing a kitten into such a ménage may well result in resentment by your older cats when a boisterous youngster comes on the scene.

The only downside is that your time together will be shorter.  It's sad but true, instead of 15-25 years, you will only have 5-10 years with your cat depending on her age when you adopt. All the more reason to spend lots of quality time with her and enjoy the present.

Mature cats often end up in shelters after being made homeless for some reason: a house move, their elderly owner moving into a care home. These felines can suffer with the loss of their special human. As time goes on, they may face the threat of euthanasia. Anyone who offers them a forever home for their later years, as my sister did, will have performed a special act of compassion. They will be rewarded with cat love they may never have experienced before. Go on adopt one of these beautiful seniors today. 

Jennifer Pulling

Jennifer Pulling runs Catsnip for the neutering and treatment of feral cats in Sicily. She is the author of The Great Sicilian Cat Rescue (John Blake)  

She has also written a beautiful book called Monet’s Angels, which I can highly recommend.

Jennifer has a website on writing:http://www.jenniferpulling.co.uk








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