Saturday 14 August 2021

Best dozen US cities for cat lovers

According to a US lawn care and landscaping business, LawnStarter, the best dozen cities for cat lovers are listed below. This is an image and not an interactive table:

So, what do you make of this table? I'm not so sure about it myself, to be perfectly honest. No doubt they have done quite a good job. They have used various criteria such as access to veterinary clinics, the availability and cost of cat sitters and the feline friendliness of local rental properties. All good criteria but not comprehensive. I don't know what their full list of criteria is but I would rank as the top qualification for a city to be cat friendly as lack of road traffic. 

About Orlando they say:

Orlando has a place for your kitty with a good share of cat-friendly rental homes (No. 26), boarding establishments (No. 1), and cat sitters (No. 1).

The place where road traffic is the lightest and where the risk of your cat being run over by a vehicle is the biggest single fear for many cat owners when they decide to let their cat go outside.

People don't use cat sitters that much, in general, and all cat owners try and avoid the veterinary clinic for obvious reasons. So, I think the big issues really are more about how good the neighbours are by which I mean how good they are about accepting the presence of cats and how much traffic there is.

Catio or enclosure
Neat and cheap catio or cat enclosure. Always a good facility for domestic cats. Photo in public domain.

If you live in a place where the neighbours don't like community cats or even outside domestic cats because they think they spread disease and are a nuisance, it's going to be a bad place to live if you have a cat. Also, there is bound to be big variations across a city such as Orlando, Florida where some parts of it are very cat friendly and other parts are less so.

I'm just picking a few holes in the idea of ranking cities in any country by their cat friendliness. It's more just an exercise to attract viewers to a page which no doubt was the purpose for LawnStarter. Nonetheless, it is quite interesting and quite useful provided you take it with a pinch of salt. My intention is not to undermine the people who did the survey, which appears to have taken quite a long time, but to simply provide my opinion.

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