Cats do make great pets for some people, but there are a few disadvantages to owning a cat. They are proud and aloof animals that are often thought of as less loyal than dogs. Although they can be cuddly and cute when they are in the mood. If you are thinking about purchasing or rescuing a feline friend, you should be aware of some of these disadvantages beforehand. Finding out that you do not like having cats in your home after the fact will only leave you frustrated and possibly leave an animal homeless.
The most annoying aspect of owning a cat is most certainly the litter box. It seems like no matter how many expensive odor reducing products you buy these things just continue to stink. They need constant (daily) cleaning to minimize the odor and cleaning a litter box can be a nasty task, especially if you have more than one cat. Cats can also track traces of fecal matter and urine throughout your house on their paws, if their litter box is not sufficiently clean. You could avoid this problem by having an outdoor cat, but that has its disadvantages as well. Besides you would simply be moving the problem onto your lawn.
Allowing your cats to go outside can be both a good thing and a bad thing. The upside is that your cat will get plenty of exercise and that is good for any animal. However, the downsides to having an outdoor cat are numerous. Fleas and ticks can be brought into your house on the animal’s coat. These bugs are not only a nuisance, but they can also be a health risk for both you and your pet. Outdoor cats are also known to bring home “presents” in the form of birds and mice. Attacks on domestic cats by wild animals are common and there is also the possibility of your pet getting hit by a car.
It is very important to spay or neuter your cats if you want to avoid any of the following problems. Unwanted feline pregnancies can produce many kittens and cats can reproduce often. So unless you really love kittens, it is advisable to spay female cats. Also, female cats in heat are extremely vocal and can be extremely affectionate (annoyingly so). Male cats that are not neutered are less friendly and they will spray noxious urine on your belongings to mark their territory. This smell is very potent and is very difficult to get rid of.
Cats have sharp claws and love to scratch carpets, bedclothes and woodwork. The damage caused by this habit can be curtailed by regularly clipping your cat’s claws. Another disadvantage of owning a cat is grooming. If you want to brush or bathe your cat, you had better be ready for a fight. It is a rare cat that will put up with being groomed. They can also shed all over your house because, unlike most dogs, cats can climb on everything. Lastly, vomiting up hairballs is a nasty, yet necessary, feline behavior. If you don’t like cleaning up messes then maybe owning a cat just isn’t for you.
All of this being said, cats can still make wonderful pets, for people who love them. Too many animals are ending up homeless because their owners didn’t fully appreciate the responsibility of owning a pet. So, if you do not think you can handle the responsibility of owning a cat, please don’t adopt one.