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Another question for you all . . .

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thank you for all of your help in my research to find out more about cats.

- How much do cats shed their hair? Do cats like Siamese cats shed less hair?

- Also, as far as cat breeds go, are there any particular breeds at cat shelters that we should consider over other breeds (and those to avoid) -- breeds with a good disposition, do well with kids, more loving and personable (less of a scaredy cat)?

- Also, if we adopt a cat from our local humane society, what can we expect from them in terms of if the cat has been vaccinated, checked by a vet recently, etc.?

Thank you!
post #2 of 16
I am not 100%sure on breeds and hair.

If any of your children have asthma/allergies then a cat may not be the best idea , i however have asthma and allergieis(badly) and i have 4 kittens a dog and soon to get a puppy , its different for everyone right?!?!

You need to visit different cats to find the one for you , pick them up stroke them , look at their temprement , ask about previouse owners , why is this cat in a shelter , ask about health problems and diet , maybe write what they say down research it , talk to your children about it , to many animals are picked from rescues and then taken back within 2 weeks.

Are you sure you can afford and give the attention to a cat , same goes for your children..

I dont know lol these were just all the things i considered and we ended up with 4 , and they will be here until there final years (only 5 months now)

Jess x
post #3 of 16
We have an Ocicat, a mixed breed, and in the past Cornish Rexes (and a few other breeds/mixed breeds.

With the purebred cats (the ones we had) all of them had/have very little shedding. But every one of my mixed breeds had a normal shedding season and thicker coat.

Siamese come in a few different types. The more refined show types don't shed as much as the traditional ones or those cats that look like siamese. I would guess the thicker the coat, the more they would tend to shed.

If you are looking in the shelter for breeds you probably will not really find any (there are many that resemble a breed, but 95% of them would be mixed). So you just need to write down the qualities you are looking for in the cat and let the shelter or rescue group help you find the right one.

I believe the shelters do vaccinate them and worm them. And they are spayed/neutered before they are adopted out. But its always wise to take the cat to your own vet for a check up within a day or two of getting them. I will warn you that your cat may come down with a slight upper respitory infection being around a lot of other animals - and not not knowing where the other cats have been or who they were in contact with.
post #4 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Traveler5 View Post
Thank you for all of your help in my research to find out more about cats.

- How much do cats shed their hair? Do cats like Siamese cats shed less hair?

- Also, as far as cat breeds go, are there any particular breeds at cat shelters that we should consider over other breeds (and those to avoid) -- breeds with a good disposition, do well with kids, more loving and personable (less of a scaredy cat)?

- Also, if we adopt a cat from our local humane society, what can we expect from them in terms of if the cat has been vaccinated, checked by a vet recently, etc.?

Thank you!
Maintenance is something you should consider. If you are not willing to comb and maintain a longhaired cat every day, a shorthaired would suit you better. I truly like to comb and maintain Persi's coat every day. I look at it as a bonding time. I rarely pay attention to my shorthaired cat in the coat department. It is true that Persi and I are more closely bonded than Alley, the shorthaired. I think that the bonding time we have each morning has something to do with it. I think most people would not want to spend the time that is needed with a longhaired cat. So, that would be my first thing to say to you; are you willing to spend the required time to keep your longhaired cat beautiful? It is a commitment that should definately be considered when picking a cat.Good luck with your descision!
post #5 of 16
Diet and stress can also impact how much a cat sheds. When they are upset or very nervous, as they often are in shelters, they do tend to "blow coat." Brushing regularly, even a short haired cat, can help with shedding... especially using a really good tool like a zoom groom or a Furminator that gets at the undercoat. And invest in a good pet hair vaccuum. If you go ahead and get a kitty, check with sharky on here. That's her screen name. She would give you great advice about diet, nutrition, and impact on shedding. She helped me with a neighbor's cat. She was feeding him grocery store crap. It took about 10 weeks on a higher quality, lower filler and grain diet for the shedding to slow down. My neighbor still needs to give her cat fish oil, which she hasn't done yet.

I was also thinking - since you have three boys - you should look for a playful cat. Cats can be a lot of fun, but they are not dogs. Your boys won't be able to roughhouse or chase the cat around. Tho' some do play in a doglike manner sometimes - such as fetch or tug of war or 'chase me'. They will chase toys and laser lights. And stalk and pounce. I think maybe a big sweet younger male cat might be a good choice. Tho' your wife might feel outnumbered!!

(I presume you don't want a dog because of the maintenance and upkeep.)

EDIT: RE vaccines, vets and rescue societies. Most all of them have their animals UTD on everything and you get vet records when you adopt. We require a vet check within two weeks of the adoption. We also do not adopt out ANY cats or dogs that are not fixed. I believe it's the law here in Michigan for rescue charities to keep their status.
post #6 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Traveler5 View Post
- How much do cats shed their hair? Do cats like Siamese cats shed less hair?

!
The breed I own doesn't shed at all. Sphynx. Please feed your cat a high quality diet. Spend some time in that part of this forum to learn more. A good diet can really help the coat and skin and so much more for our pets.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Traveler5 View Post
- Also, as far as cat breeds go, are there any particular breeds at cat shelters that we should consider over other breeds (and those to avoid) -- breeds with a good disposition, do well with kids, more loving and personable (less of a scaredy cat)?
!
Go for personality I would say over breed There are some great pet cats, very cute and good looking DSH & DLH (Domestic Short and Long Hairs) just waiting for homes. Some rescues might have their cats as fosters, and most rescues can give you important insights in how they are usually.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Traveler5 View Post
Also, if we adopt a cat from our local humane society, what can we expect from them in terms of if the cat has been vaccinated, checked by a vet recently, etc.?
It varies. But you can expect to adopt a vaccinated and altered cat that has been vet checked and the staff should know about them, their likes/dislikes and cute things like that!

Good for you for doing your research! You won't regret bringing a kitty kitty into your life. If you adopt a kitten, consider getting two of them.
post #7 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenKitty45 View Post
We have an Ocicat, a mixed breed, and in the past Cornish Rexes (and a few other breeds/mixed breeds.

With the purebred cats (the ones we had) all of them had/have very little shedding. But every one of my mixed breeds had a normal shedding season and thicker coat.

Siamese come in a few different types. The more refined show types don't shed as much as the traditional ones or those cats that look like siamese. I would guess the thicker the coat, the more they would tend to shed.

If you are looking in the shelter for breeds you probably will not really find any (there are many that resemble a breed, but 95% of them would be mixed). So you just need to write down the qualities you are looking for in the cat and let the shelter or rescue group help you find the right one.

I believe the shelters do vaccinate them and worm them. And they are spayed/neutered before they are adopted out. But its always wise to take the cat to your own vet for a check up within a day or two of getting them. I will warn you that your cat may come down with a slight upper respitory infection being around a lot of other animals - and not not knowing where the other cats have been or who they were in contact with.
My kitten Thai is a Siamese mix and he sheds alot. My Siamese mix before him, my baby boy Siam was a big shedder also. Under times of stress they were/are " coat blowers" (I think AddieBee said that) A visit to the vet is a flurry of fur! My ol' mutt Spud, a DSH of unknown breed sheds very little. Thai and Siam both had very thick coats, not long, but very thick.
As much as I love Siamese, I'm not really sure they are a good mix with young children, but that's just my experience with mine. Siam would tolerate no strangers at all, only my husband and I. Thai is a little better but not much. I can not image that they would tolerate children at all. I had a tortie=point Siamese when my children were young. She only liked me and didn't deal well at all with the kids or hubby, so they didn't like her....but I LOVED her and she LOVED me!

I also wanted to add to this loooong post. I have found that two cats are best. They keep each other company. Spud was only child for many years, then we added Siam to the family. Spud acted like he could barely tolerate Siam's presence. But when Siam passed after only two years, Spud became very needy and seemed lost without Siam. That's why we got Thai after a couple of months. They tussle but Spud is so much calmer and less whiney now that he has Thai. Maybe see how it goes with one and then add another similar to age in a few months. Oh, and I highly recommend two males...just seems to work better in my opinion. Good Luck!
post #8 of 16
i have 5 - all moggies. of the 5, coat varies quite a bit. Pixel & Chip have the thickest coats... Chip is a bit prone to matting, as well. doesn't help that he really dislikes the grooming process! Cable & Firefox have much more moderate coats - really don't need brushing/combing much. Java has the thinnest coat of the bunch. she's also quite oriental in her body type & facial shape. but all of them are simply DSH. 4 of the 5 are rescues, as well - & Chip is my only adult adoptee. he's also declawed [previous owner] & has a tendency to bite if you're doing something he doesn't like [like brushing/combing him]. i think this is partly due to mistreatment by a previous owner - he's become much more trusting in the 2.5 years i've had him.
Pixel, my other declawed cat, was raised by me from a kitten [i was ignorant!] & never bites me. the other 3 have their claws. of those, biting is a very rare thing - they have to be in pain or REALLY angry to even attempt it.
post #9 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Traveler5 View Post
Thank you for all of your help in my research to find out more about cats.

- How much do cats shed their hair? Do cats like Siamese cats shed less hair?

- Also, as far as cat breeds go, are there any particular breeds at cat shelters that we should consider over other breeds (and those to avoid) -- breeds with a good disposition, do well with kids, more loving and personable (less of a scaredy cat)?

- Also, if we adopt a cat from our local humane society, what can we expect from them in terms of if the cat has been vaccinated, checked by a vet recently, etc.?

Thank you!

Cats shed hair at different rates. It depends on the individual cat, length of coat, thickness of coat, and stressful surroundings. Like several others said, at times of stress cats tend to shed more. I have two purebred Siamese cats. One of them has a shorter, thinner coat than the other one. He tends to shed less than his sister. Every time I pick her up, she leaves a nice swath of fur on my mostly black wardrobe. Teach me to get white cats... Anyway, I love Siamese cats, but they definitely do not shed less than other cats. My stuff is covered with fur.

As far as shelters go, you are not going to find very many purebred cats there. A good cat breeder does everything he or she can to keep the cats that they breed from ending up in a shelter by having adopters sign contracts that if they must get rid of the cat, they will return it to the breeder. You may find mixed breed cats, however, that have characteristics of purebred cats. It is not uncommon to find "pointed" cats that look Siamese or long haired cats that look Persian in shelters. As far as what you should look for or avoid, I don't think this is going to have a lot to do with breed. You should ask the people at the shelter for cats that have the personality traits that you are looking for - friendly, does well with children, playful, and then meet those cats and see which one "jumps out" at you. The right cat for you is out there!

If you adopt from a shelter, your cat should have received at least one booster for the common kitty bacteria/viruses and a rabies shot. Your kitty should also be spayed and/or neutered before you take them home. You can expect your kitty to have been de-wormed also, and to have been looked at by a vet recently. Considering that all this is typically included, you get a great deal from an animal shelter!

However, you should DEFINITELY take your new kitty to see your vet within a few days of bringing him or her home. If you don't already have a vet (since you don't have any pets if I remember correctly) ask friends and relatives and the animal shelter for recommendations, and visit some of the vets before you adopt your kitty. That way, you will know which one you want to use before you bring your kitty home.

Don't be surprised if your kitty has a small upper respiratory infection (or URI) after you bring them home. Most kitties are exposed to that type of virus in an environment like an animal shelter. Usually this clears up after one round of antibiotics and your kitty will be just fine.


Thanks for doing so much research before you adopt! You seem like a nice guy! I hope you find an awesome kitty! Actually, I hope you find two.
post #10 of 16
If you are looking for a purebreed of some sort, there may also be breed rescues in your area. Petfinder.com is a good source for tracking that down.

Also, it has been my experience that if a cat is friendly, playful and interested in contact in the shelter environment - which is very stressful for them - chances are that cat will do great in a home. Not to say that a more reserved cat won't blossom into a wonderful, loving pet. I've seen that too. But my view is that if they can be happy, easy-going, etc in THAT environment, it says a lot about personality.

Again, good luck in your decision-making.
post #11 of 16
My only suggestion is to be very open minded when looking at shelters or rescues for cats/kittens.

When I lost my favorite cat 4 years ago I thought I wanted an older female cat. Howevery when I got to the rescue place I just didn't click with any of the ones she had available.

However there was this smaller scrawny black.white cat that kept on crawling up my leg.
I guess he was trying to tell me "pick me!!" I did and now almost 4 years later I'm glad I did so.

I would also add to take to vet for checkup as soon as possible because Bakker unfortuntately had ringworm which I had to treat for. And he had a bit of a URI also.
That is from the environment he was in as this rescue had about 30 cats!!
Not all of them are this way however.
post #12 of 16
If you have an adult cat from a shelter you may not know what it has been through.

When we had Tabitha, she was lovely and loved fuss at the shelter, but from the day we bought her home she had always been timid. Gradually she learned to love us back
post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by cococat View Post
...Go for personality I would say over breed ...

...If you adopt a kitten, consider getting two of them...
Excellent recommendations. And if I may add -- the one thing I regret about the way we raised our kitties is that I didn't start from the very beginning to get them accustomed to baths, clawtrimming, and taking medicine. Now all of that is virtually impossible without major trauma to the kitties. It's so important to get them used to these things right away.

Good luck!
post #14 of 16
Thread Starter 
You've all given me some great information -- thank you.

I really like the advice to go with the cat that comes up to us and is the most friendly of the other cats when we visit the shelter. I don't really care about breed or the looks of the cat, only that it's friendly and a good fit for my kids. I believe we'll try to get a full-grown cat (1 year or older -- or something like that) that is male. From what I'm hearing here, I think he'll get a long with our boys better.

My 16 year-old son is a great kid, and one of my best friends, who likes cats a lot but being a teenager he's got a lot of other things on his mind at this point in his life. My 6 year-old is a typical rascal-boy who's very sweet and loving and full of life, but he likes to get into things, be mischievous and creative and play with Legos. He'll go crazy about having a cat because he loves animals but if something more interesting comes up he'll move on to that, then on to the next thing, and so on.

It's my 12 year-old son that will really love and take care of the cat. He's our fun-loving, tender-hearted son who also has a wonderful imagination and loves life. He's been on us to get a pet for a long time. His first choice would be a small dog but we're not interested in that. A dog requires an awful lot of time and attention -- you don't have to take a cat on a long walk. His second choice would be a cat and I know, without a doubt, he'll love having a cat in our home. He loves animals and animals love him because of his sweet and kind disposition. He has brown hair and big brown, "smiling" eyes. Because our oldest and youngest sons require more attention right now, I believe our 12 year-old feels like a typical "middle child." So, we want to bring a pet cat into his life and give him a pet to love and tend to under our supervision.
post #15 of 16
As far as health care for the cat in the shelter, visit the different shelters in your area and see what they provide in the way of health care. In the shelters I can think of near me, all vaccinate but not all vaccinate for rabies. Some spay/neuter - some don't and the ones that do speuter at different ages. I think all deworm and treat for fleas as needed.

Don't rule out the slightly higher priced adoption fees places as you may find that your cat is cheaper in the long term as they may have vet records etc for you (we provide adopters with the cat/kitten's vet jacket that has the exact date of its shots, neuter and the write up of the physical exam with weights etc).

Visit the shelter and choose a shelter where it seems clean, organised ( as you can be with that many animals to care for) and where people seem to care.

A 6, 12 1nd 16 year old should be fine with a cat, but call ahead as some shelters do not adopt to people with children under 10 for some reason.
post #16 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Traveler5 View Post
You've all given me some great information -- thank you.

I really like the advice to go with the cat that comes up to us and is the most friendly of the other cats when we visit the shelter. I don't really care about breed or the looks of the cat, only that it's friendly and a good fit for my kids. I believe we'll try to get a full-grown cat (1 year or older -- or something like that) that is male. From what I'm hearing here, I think he'll get a long with our boys better.

My 16 year-old son is a great kid, and one of my best friends, who likes cats a lot but being a teenager he's got a lot of other things on his mind at this point in his life. My 6 year-old is a typical rascal-boy who's very sweet and loving and full of life, but he likes to get into things, be mischievous and creative and play with Legos. He'll go crazy about having a cat because he loves animals but if something more interesting comes up he'll move on to that, then on to the next thing, and so on.

It's my 12 year-old son that will really love and take care of the cat. He's our fun-loving, tender-hearted son who also has a wonderful imagination and loves life. He's been on us to get a pet for a long time. His first choice would be a small dog but we're not interested in that. A dog requires an awful lot of time and attention -- you don't have to take a cat on a long walk. His second choice would be a cat and I know, without a doubt, he'll love having a cat in our home. He loves animals and animals love him because of his sweet and kind disposition. He has brown hair and big brown, "smiling" eyes. Because our oldest and youngest sons require more attention right now, I believe our 12 year-old feels like a typical "middle child." So, we want to bring a pet cat into his life and give him a pet to love and tend to under our supervision.

What a beautiful description! Sounds like you know your boys really well. Don't be surprised if you get a cat, if the kitty has an impact on the other boys, too... as well as you and your wife.

Most of us on here are saying "male" cat because if you generalize, they tend to be a little more even tempered than their female counterparts. That's not to say that a girl kitty would be a bad choice. And cats communicate - we had a family come in with a boy about eight ... he seemed really interested in a tabby male kitten -- but the tabby's brother - a mostly black cat - kept tapping the boy with his paw to get his attention. As if to say, hey what about me? Unfortunately they didnt take either kitten (kits were about 5-6 mos old). I've seen skittish female cats crawl into people's laps, etc. Also, the experts on here (I"m a novice who's learning )
will tell you that males are less territorial - so it MAY make it easier to integrate a second cat, should you decide -- hey - we like this and kitty needs a pal.
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