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What Cat Should I Get? Top 5 Lifestyle Considerations (Vet Approved)

Written by: Catster Editorial Team

Last Updated on March 18, 2024 by Catster Editorial Team

young woman working at home sitting on the couch with her cat

What Cat Should I Get? Top 5 Lifestyle Considerations (Vet Approved)


Dr. Lauren Demos (DVM) Photo


Dr. Lauren Demos (DVM)


The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

Learn more »

Cats have a reputation for being low-maintenance pets that are perfect for busy individuals, but that’s entirely not true. Plus, some cats can be more hands-on than others. There’s almost as much variety among cat breeds as dog breeds, so it’s not enough to choose a cat on looks alone.

You want to be sure you’re bringing home the right fit for your needs and lifestyle, which is more than just your age. Here are some considerations to help you choose the best cat for you.

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Top 5 Considerations For Finding The Perfect Cat

1. You’re Single and Focused on Your Career

woman working on her laptop with her cat
Image Credit: Bogdan Sonjachnyj, Shutterstock

Young professionals are career-focused at this stage of their lives. If you’re pulling long hours at work and hoping to have an independent pet, it’s important to avoid kittens that require more time and effort. You should also avoid breeds that thrive on their owner’s attention, such as Sphynx and Persian cats.

An adult cat that’s already sown their kitten oats is a good choice. As long as you provide the right environment for your cat, including a lot of toys and cat furniture, your cat can entertain themselves while you’re away. You may want to consider a bonded pair of cats that can keep each other company.

2. You Have a Family With Young Children

small cute child with a bald head that embraces with tenderness and love a red cat
Image Credit: oes, Shutterstock

If you have a new family with babies or toddlers, it’s important to get a gentle breed that’s comfortable around children, like an adult Maine Coon or Ragdoll. Avoid kittens with very young children, which are a bit too fragile and may divide your parenting attention too much.

While it’s good to get a cat breed that’s naturally docile and comfortable around rambunctious children, you still need to supervise their interactions. It’s easy for kids to play a little too rough with cats and cause accidental injuries or emotional stress.

But, of course, if you think your children are too young or not emotionally ready for a cat, don’t get one—even if they beg!

3. You Have a Family With Older Children

child petting the cat on her lap
Image Credit: Karpova, Shutterstock

As your kids get older and become more conscientious and independent, your home becomes a better choice for kittens or juvenile cats. Older children can be taught to interact with kittens gently and safely. They’re also old enough to give kittens the attention they need without your constant watchful eye.

The breed isn’t as important at this stage, but consider the relationship you want with your cat as they age. If you want your children to learn more responsibility and have a cat they can bond with, choosing kittens from “needier” breeds like Sphynx, Siamese, Birman, and Abyssinian may be a good choice.

4. You’re a Retired Senior

senior man with his cat
Image Credit: pikselstock, Shutterstock

If you’re a retired senior and want a cat for companionship, your choice depends on how active you are. If you still spend a lot of time out of the house socializing or traveling, a more independent adult cat is a good choice.

However, if you like to stay home, you may be able to manage a kitten or a clingier cat breed that wants to be with you 24/7. Senior cats are also a great choice, as they often match energy levels, and needs of senior humans.

5. You Want to Be a Young Cat Parent

young woman holding cute siberian cat with green eyes
Image Credit: evrymmnt, Shutterstock

Cats are a great choice for single owners who are established in their career, without children, and mostly homebodies. Whether you’re single or married, you can bring home kittens that require a lot of hands-on attention, senior or special-needs cats that require extra care, or anything in between.

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New Kitten Preparations

Since you're hard at work researching which breed to welcome into your life, it's probably a good time to introduce a few kitten essentials that will help seamlessly transition your furbaby into their new home. Ensuring you provide them with the proper care, comfort, and enrichment will help your kitten thrive and grow into a well-established and healthy feline! Check out our top recommendations in our New Kitten Checklist linked below!

kittens sleeping

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Cats make wonderful pets, whether you want a cute and mischievous kitten, a snuggle buddy, or a low-maintenance feline roommate. Selecting the right age and breed is important not just for your own comfort but also for the cats, so be sure to consider how much time and attention you can devote to cat ownership.

Featured Image Credit: Ground Picture, Shutterstock

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