Which makes a better pet: A dog or a cat? – Part 28

Asking people to choose whether a dog or a cat makes the best pet is pretty much like comparing apples with oranges. They really are totally different and there will naturally be those for whom a dog is the best pet, while for others a cat will suit them and their lifestyle best. Then of course there will be those who appreciate what each has to offer. It really depends on your own personality and preferences.

If you want a pet who’s pretty much independent and not too needy, then a cat will almost definitely suit you best. There’s no doubt about it, most dogs are anything but independent and have intense needs of their human’s company.

Many cats are by nature aloof and standoffish – and this quality makes them just perfect pets for many people, who lead busy lives and don’t have time to give a pet lots of attention. Nevertheless, there are cats who are friendly and personable and are happy to curl up in a lap for the evening or participate more in family life. My husband had a cat before we started courting and he says it was more like a dog than a cat. There are certain cat breeds which have a reputation for being very affectionate and sociable – but they do tend to cost a lot more than your average moggy. You certainly wouldn’t want to let a cat like that roam at all – but then some of them are more than happy to be “lounge lizards” anyway. What’s more, because of their impact on birdlife, it’s considered to be more environmentally friendly to keep your cat indoors nowadays anyway.

Personally, I grew up with a pet dog and I would feel very deprived and lonely without a dog in my life. My mother was one of those people who really couldn’t stand most cats. We did have a few over the years. I’m not really sure why my mother even considered taking them and, apart from one outstanding exception, none of them were successful members of our family. Sadly, the only one who even managed to win Mum’s heart as well as mine, met a tragic end.

When I moved into a house with someone else, we both wanted pets. She had a cat in mind and I had my heart set on getting a dog. I was ecstatic when I was able to adopt a golden cocker spaniel from a pound. My house-mate found a litter of kittens and adopted one. I took one of the others – but it really wasn’t successful at all. The kitten was skittish – which is probably perfectly normal – but I just wasn’t enough of a cat person to bear with it. I was too focussed on my adorable little canine

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