Once you fall in love with one cat, it’s all too easy to fall in love with them all. Cats provide companionship, cuddles, and entertainment, and it stands to reason that the more cats you have, the happier you’ll be, right? There may be plenty of room in your heart for a second cat, but unfortunately, the size of your heart shouldn’t be your main consideration when taking on this important decision. Not every cat wants to share their life with a fellow feline. In fact, some cats will strongly object to you welcoming home a new pet. And in addition to your cat’s feelings, there are other factors to think about before expanding your family.
While it’s true that cats are social animals, they don’t all crave the company of fellow felines. Most felines, both wild and domestic, prefer to operate on their own. They can get along in groups, but they don’t usually form the strong friendships we envision for our pets when we bring home an addition.
Your cat’s personality will have a lot to do with how they feel about other animals. Energetic and outgoing kitties might enjoy having a companion to play with. They might even become especially attached to another non-human family member.
Cats that are shy, timid, or independent, however, might not appreciate another living being to contend with. And don’t fall into the thinking that getting a friend will help your shy kitty come out of their shell. That’s rarely how it works. They’re more likely to feel intimidated than comforted.
If you do decide to bring home a second cat, you need to consider how different personalities mesh together. Just like how certain types of people can clash, the same is true for cats. Your cat might tolerate a cat with a similar or complementing personality, but they also might be incapable of getting along. Just because your cat got along well with one cat, that doesn’t mean they’ll make friends with every feline they meet.
Age and personality sometimes go hand-in-hand when deciding to bring home a second cat. Younger felines tend to be more playful, and older ones can be more routine-reliant. While this is by no means an all-encompassing rule, it generally works out that younger or middle aged cats are more accepting of new companions.
Seniors value their predictable routines. They’re also less interested in playing and more interested in napping. A new feline in the house could upset them by interrupting their highly-valued current way of life.
Many people also note that adults are more likely to accept kittens than they are companions their own age. This might have something to do with wanting to be the dominant individual or alpha in the house. If they see another pet as competition for resources, things could get ugly.
Logistics of Getting a Second Cat
Even if you’re convinced your current best friend would love having an additional companion, there are other factors to think about. First, consider the cost of another mouth to feed. You’ll go through twice as much food and double the treats. Add that price to what you’ll spend in vet bills, toys, and kitty litter.
Speaking of kitty litter, having more furry friends means you’ll be scooping a lot more poop. Every cat in your home should have their own litter box. That means you’ll need to dedicate more time to pet-related chores including cleaning the litter boxes.
The Bottom Line
The truth is, no one can tell you for sure whether getting a second cat will or will not work out for your family. The risks include potentially upsetting your current pet, putting them at risk of injury if they don’t get alone, and upsetting the delicate peace of your household. Not to mention the potential for financial strain or adding stress to your personal life if introductions don’t go as planned.
At the same time, however, welcoming home a second cat could be one of your greatest decisions. It’s completely true that more furry friends equals more love for you. If you choose to adopt, you’re saving an innocent life. And regardless of where your new family member comes from, there’s always the chance that your current cat and your new addition will form a great friendship.
Having two cats that get along means they’re always there to keep each other company. Life for felines can be great when they have a friend to share it with…as long as that’s what they want.
If you do decide to expand your family, you’ll need to take your time with the introductions. Don’t expect your two cats to be best friends at their first hello. Read this article next for tips on how to conduct a proper introduction.