I have the opportunity to take a one year old cat and I really want to! He's adorable and to be quite honest, I am lonely and sad a lot so I thought he'd cheer me up. But I also now, am really worried I won't be good enough for him. I'm a college student, and finances are already tight. I didn't do well last semester and I'm still coping with depression. Which I thought the cat could help me with, you know, cuddle me when I'm sad... But am I really ready for a 14 year commitment? I mean, my family has 2 cats, my grandma adopted 3 stray cats and animals like me a lot. I just, maybe this is too much right now? I just, saw his picture and kinda fell in love with him. But I live in a dorm room and I'm always moving around from place to place and I want to travel this summer... Help me!
Most Helpful Guy
I've grown up with tons of pets, including several cats. I think you should go for it as long as you feel generally committed. I don't think you should think 14 years ahead (some cats can also become older by the way, one of our cats was 19 when it died). It's too scary to think so far ahead and there's always the possibility of giving the cat to someone else after a few years. For example my brother and his girlfriend had a cat for a couple of years but then they didn't have time for it anymore and so they gave it to their friend and neighbor who is around the same age. Now the cat lives there and she it didn't seem to mind the fact that its owner changed. She's still living a very nice life.
Finances are certainly an important issues. Generally speaking, cats are much easier than dogs cuz they're so independent and free-spirited (which is why I love cats :-)). All they need is enough food every day, a cat toilet with enough kitty litter, and - if you wanna be very generous - a couple of toys. And of course love. Maybe it would help to write down a budget with all your incoming money and your outgoing money per month, make a few calculations and see if you can afford the cat.
As for the travelling: going on vacation is generally not a problem as long as you have somebody who you can trust. You need somebody who will be very diligent and responsible to take care of your cat every day while you're away. That's very important.
One big problem I see in the fact that you live in a dorm room. Would the cat be able to go outside? This is very important. You can't keep a cat in a room. I know some people do this but it's not right. It's generally considered animal cruelty. Cats need space to run and stroll around, ideally somewhere where you've also got a meadow, a couple of tree and bushes. Otherwise the cat will become very unhappy and depressed and perhaps also aggressive.
If it's possible for the cat to walk around outside of your dorm room, I think it could totally work. It's true that cats are great pets when you deal with depression. Probably even better than dogs. Scientific research has shown that the purring of cats has a very calming and relaxing effect on humans and I can tell you from my own life that my family's cats helped me a lot going through some rough times.
However, if it's not possible for the cat to go outside of your dorm room, I think it's a very bad idea. In that case, I'd rather get a hamster or somethin like that and wait a few years0
Most Helpful Girl
Cats are super duper low maintenance. They're nocturnal, but I understand you are, too. (:
As for the traveling, you can easily leave the cat, as long as you've got someone to check in, change the litter box, and refresh food/water every 2-4 days. (If it's every 3-4 days just have a big-ass litter box.) Cats are super bonded to their physical home, so this will actually be much much less stressful, for the cat, than traveling with you.
If you know absolutely zero people who could do this, there will be local vets who offer boarding services. Try to negotiate a deal with them -- again, cats are super easy, so they should be willing to move on the price.1