Kittens! Not exactly primal related, but I could use advice!
So I've really been wanting a cat for quite awhile now, since my last kitty is so attached to my parents' cats that I couldn't take her with me when I moved out a few years ago. Then I started thinking, if I'm going to adopt a cat, perhaps two would be better than one, so they keep each other company when I'm away and have a playmate for life etc.
Has anyone had experience with adopting 2 litter mates or same-age kittens at the same time, and if so do you think there are major benefits to it? Has it been harder with two cats vs one as far as care or space goes? I know the cost will be greater due to vet bills and food.
Also, what does everyone feed their cats? I'd like to go with a mix of dry and wet grain free food, but was wondering about specific brands.
When I worked full-time, I usually had two cats so they wouldn't be alone so long when I was at work. I've had cats that were almost the same age (adopted within a week of each other), and also had cats where I had one for a few years and then introduced a kitten.
Same age is pretty easy. And if you get them at the same time, neither feels like their space has been invaded.
The hardest introduction of a kitten was (just my limited experience, nothing googled or researched), was an adult female and a male kitten. She never liked him or played with him ever. She wouldn't even eat in the same room as he did and she wouldn't let him on my bed. Male adult, female kitten, much the same, but he ate with her - he just seemed indifferent. Male adult, male kitten - took about 10 minutes of sniffing and a little hissing, then they became fast friends.
"Right is right, even if no one is doing it; wrong is wrong, even if everyone is doing it." - St. Augustine
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For many years I had an only cat who was highly antisocial. When she finally died I went to the shelter and got a couple of adult cats from one of their community rooms. They don't always like each other, but they both love me to pieces.
When we got our cats, we opted for two brothers. They were only about 6 weeks old when we got them, they will be two yrs this summer.
It was the perfect decision, they play and rough house, they race around together, they snuggle up and nap together, they groom each other and have been a great source of entertainment. I say go for it!
I have 2 cats of varying age, the older one likes to lick the little one(and me) way too much. The other one is an orange kitty who was thought to be permanently blind in one eye, but since applying medicine and feeding him well(US Wellness pet burgers) he's actually started to regain vision in his eye again! It's kinda a miracle. He's now much more active than before, and can't stop jumping around. Unfortunately his eye is still prone to infection, but one step at a time. So, remember, what your cats eat is very important too, just like with us. You wouldn't believe the amount of harmful junk in commercial pet food.
Both my cats are very attached to me.
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At different times I've done litter mates, and then a single kitten followed later by another single kitten. I definitely think litter mates are best. They'll already be familiar with each other and hopefully also affectionate.
When I got a single kitten, she was horribly lonely. We'd come home and she would need a lot of attention and just be desperate. After a few months of that, we got another kitten. Although they do play together, our older kitten never really bonded all the way with the new one.
I'm buying Blue Buffalo Wilderness food which is grain free and my cats just totally love it. For canned food (especially good for cats since it helps them get more water), one of my cats is finicky and absolutely will not eat anything but Purina Pro Plan. It's not the best canned food, but it's not the worst either.
Almost 15 years ago I adopted 2 males - not littermates but kittens very close in age. I intentionally chose kittens because I figured two kittens would adjust to a new home and to each other more easily than two adult cats would. I intentionally chose two of the same sex so we wouldn't have any "oopsies" if I didn't get them fixed at the exact right time.
It's more expensive than having one. Everything doubles, except maybe toys and litter, which you need only some extra of. And you have twice as much cat hair to clean up. Those buggers can really shed - I actually have to clean it out of the refrigerator!
But they enjoyed one another's company a great deal. I lost one of them two years ago (brain tumor) and I can tell the remaining cat doesn't really like being by himself all day; I'm actually looking into adopting a companion for him. And while it lasts, having two kittens in the house is hugely entertaining. Now that I'm thinking about it, they regularly played and romped together until they were about six years old - only then did they significantly calm down. There was some fighting, but not serious. They were generally companionable pride members.
The biggest benefit to me came when Sheridan died. I would have wasted away from a broken heart if Sinclair hadn't been around to help get me through losing Sheridan. That's another reason I want another cat right now - Sinclair isn't going to be around forever and I'm going to need somekitty to help me cope with his loss. You can get really attached to these critters, especially when you live alone. But it's worth it.
I have two cats - same age, different litters, one male, one female. Got the female one first (farm kitten from my boss at my old job). She seemed lonely, so I adopted a friend for her. Adoption agency actually recommended the opposite sex, so I went with that. At first, she hated him - hissing, paw waving, the works - but the male had been fostered before, so he had a dynamite coping strategy, which was to flop over and go belly up until she went away.
Two years later they get along great, snuggle, play chase all the time, and despite outweighing his 'sister' by 2 to 1, poor Elroy still gets the crap beat out of him in a fight. lol.
I think the biggest factor is their age when they are introduced to the other cat. I always had cats growing up, and the next time I see adult cat get along well with the new kitten in town will be the first. My parents just adopted 2 similar aged kittens, and their one adult cat pretty much shuns them.
If you're not on a super strict budget, I would get 2.
EDIT: Totally forgot about my friends' experience, which was not nearly as good as mine. They have two cats that are from the same litter, both female. The cats get along now, but they had huge problems with them fighting. Which I think is why the adoption agency I used recommended I get a male to go along with my female - supposedly two unspayed (neutered? whatever) females will be very prone to fighting. Anyway, to this day they are reluctant to leave without making sure one cat is locked in the basement. Soooo... YMMV I guess! :/
Last edited by boomingno; 04-13-2013 at 02:30 PM.
Reason: Added info about my friends' cats.
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Adopting two kittens at once is a very smart idea. Especially if they are littermates. They already get along, they will have tons of fun and you will see that the bond they have lasts a lifetime. That being said, the bond they has will be so great, that if one passes, the other one will definitely show sadness. But I would do it in a heartbeat. I have 2 cats who were not litter mates, but that is because I adopted an older cat, and then a few years later adopted another cat. And while they don't love each other all the time, they get along and they play their silly little cat games a lot.