Buy cats from shelters, not stores

Re: City wants cats fixed before sale (NewsLeader, Feb. 19).

I support mandatory sterilization of domestic animals.

But consumers can fix this problem overnight by refusing to buy pets from stores and adopting them from animal shelters instead.

Bringing a pet into a family is a decision with long-lasting consequences. In the case of a cat, likely 17 to 20 years—and should not be entered into with an "ooh, look at the cute kittens" impulse buy. The decision requires serious thought and consideration.

Even a low-maintenance cat needs food, water, attention, exercise and the litter box cleaned.

(Hint: except in unusual circumstances, the kid begging for the kitten will not be the one to do this.)

Cat ownership can impact travel plans. A move to a no-pets building can result in a cat being ditched. And are you positive that no one who will be near the cat will be allergic to it? Don't forget the financial impact of adding a furry member to the household. Vet bills can be significant, even for an indoor cat.

Once you've considered all these issues, by all means, head down to the local shelter and save a life!

Cathy Morton


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