Philosophy from the Field: Six things I did right when raising cats

Last week, I wrote a post on the six mistakes I made when I was raising cats. It was a tough post to write because, truthfully, I wish I hadn’t made any mistakes at all. After all, who wants to think they were the pet parent from hell?

But, and as I reminded myself at the time, it wasn’t all doom and gloom in my cats’ kittenhoods. In fact, there were even some stuff that I did right.

Six things I did right when I was raising cats

  1. I took the preparation stage seriously. Even before our home was flooded with fluffy, white Ragdoll fur, I was researching how to best feed and care for my cats. I also thoroughly investigated their breed to make sure that I was choosing one that was suitable for my lifestyle. Floppy, loveable and cuddly? Yep, right up my alley.
  2. I took a week off work. This will probably sound a little crazy to most people, but both times I introduced a kitty into our family I took an entire week off work to care for them. But I truly feel that this was time well spent! It helped me to bond with both of them and also eased their transition into our home. It was especially invaluable when I was getting Tank and Bear acclimated with each other.
  3. I socialised Tank (almost) perfectly. As the first child, Tank did cop a lot of our trial and error mistakes. But he was also the one that was socialised (almost) perfectly. And by socialised, I don’t just mean with other pets and humans, although we did that too. But we also took Tank on walks, adventured outdoors with him, went on car trips together and regularly introduced him to new sights and sounds. As a result, he’s now pretty unflappable. Well, except, with vets … but that’s a story for another day.
  4. I cuddled the heck out of them. Now, this one is debatable, but personally I think that my intense snuggle habits were a good thing for the boys. I petted and picked them up while they were snoozing, scratched their back when they were eating and paused play time for regular cuddle breaks. As a result, both of my cats are now completely okay with being touched and handled, no matter what the situation. Well, except, again for the vet.
  5. I embraced play time. Managing the boys’ energy levels, especially when they were kittens, was another area I aced. By wearing them out with play time, I managed to avoid the usual destructive habits that are common in bored kitties. It also helped me to bond with them more and gave them an outlet for their natural predatory instincts.
  6. I asked myself this question all the time: Are they happy? Because at the end of the day, that’s what was most important to me. If I managed to raise cats that were happy and peaceful, I’d done at least a little bit of my job well.

What about you? What were some things you did right when raising cats (or dogs)?

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