Friday 26 August 2011

Top Cat Breeds for Children

People like the idea of finding a cat breed that is suitable for children and rightly so. I suppose we are looking at cat breeds that are mellow in character and able to put up with a child's boisterous behavior and perhaps the odd bit of mishandling. have a page on the subject and they list one of the qualities of a suitable cat as "not territorial". Sorry Catster but all cats are territorial. It is just a complete misconception to think that a certain cat breed is not territorial. All cats, random bred or purebred, have the same form and fundamental behavior as wildcats. Wildcats are decidedly territorial.

Also without wishing to be unnecessarily critical or argumentative, you will not find a lot of difference in character between the cat breeds. This is because cat breeders don't prioritise character and behavior or health. They prioritise appearance. And if they did try and breed a super mellow cat it would not work. If it did it would have happened by now.

Certainly some cat breeds might tend to be more mellow and accepting, the Ragdoll comes to mind. But the laid back nature of this cat breed is, to be honest, over hyped. Sometimes, you'll get unsocialised Ragdolls that are not great to be with.

Which brings me to the much more important question of socialisation of cats and training of children!

If any cat, random bred or purebred, is very well socialised to accept children, other cats, noises, adult people, whatever, they will be fine for a child. But the child must also be socialised in one way: trained to handle a cat.

Any cat not matter how well socialised will possibly respond temporarily aggressively if handled badly; say for example picked up roughly and turned over on his or her back. This makes a cat feel vulnerable.

In addition individual cats within a certain cat breed will have a greater range of character types that have a stronger impact on suitability for a child than the general character of that breed.

So it is really about individual cats that counts and the child's behavior.

In conclusion, therefore, if you are searching for the top cat breeds for children, you should instead look for a cat breed that you like and that your child likes and ensure that the adopted cat is socialised extremely well (check with the breeder and by playing with the cat). And...the big "and", ensure also that you, the mother, have trained your child to respect cats, to handle and to play with them properly, by which I mean in a manner that the cat finds acceptable and non-threatening.

Simple really. Top cat breeds for children don't really exist.

Michael Avatar

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  1. Hi Michael,
    I do agree with you that most children should be educated, or be supervised in the company of cats.
    Regretfully, I've known people who locked their cat up in a room of got rid of their cat when children were born

  2. That is wrong because children can learn from animals and learn to love animals at an early age, which can only improve the world. Thanks for commenting.


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