Is a Cat or a Dog Better Choice?

As a volunteer at a local shelter, I would like to give some advice to first-time pet owners who want to adopt a dog or a cat during the National Adoption Weekend at PetSmart. Dogs and cats are domesticated friends and animals of people, whether they are family pets or human service pets. Dogs and cats have been providing our ancestors with love, enjoyment, and protection for thousands of years. These two animals are the most popular pets today. Some people prefer cats, while others are dog lovers. When choosing a cat or a dog, you should consider how much time you can dedicate to the pet, the temperament of the pet, and how much money you can afford vet visits, food, and on other necessities. In order to help you make a choice of whether to adopt a cat or a dog, I focus on emphasizing the differences between cats and dogs along with their advantages and disadvantages based on basis of comparison.

How much time you spend taking care of your pet is very important. When you pay attention to cats, you notice that they always clean themselves. If you keep their litter boxes clean, indoor cats never have any offensive odors emanating from their bodies. Cats do not stink because they use their saliva to clean their bodies several times all day. Therefore, you only need to bath them once a week. This is a large advantage for first-time pet owners who do not have much experience taking care of a pet. I have a cat at home. Whenever I go out all day, my cat can take care of himself. Therefore, I do not need to worry or pay attention to him very much. Dogs require bathing more than once a week. If not, they become stinky. Dogs enjoy rolling around in the grass or on the floor. As a result, they usually have offensive odor. Also, dogs’ saliva contains natural antibiotics, which help heal open wounds and avoid parasites, but it causes strong odor on their bodies. Besides, training a pet also takes very much time. Cats do not require training because they are independent of their owners. On the other hand, dogs need to be trained in order to become good pets and obey their owners. When you leave dogs out side of yards, they eat anything including their bodily waste. Unlike indoor cats, you must spend very much time training and taking care of dogs, or else they construct bad behavior. One time, I caught a dog at the shelter eating his vomit. The last problem is that dogs generally drool more than cats. In this respect, cats are definitely winners because of their low maintenance. All the requirements for owning a cat are a little attention and a clean litter box. Therefore, cats are more suitable for first-time pet owners.

Choosing a pet based on their temperament is very important. The personality of a cat is considered closer to our own personalities because they are independent of their owners. Cats always have activities based on their desire and do not want to obey their owners. As a volunteer at the shelter, I have learned that cats act more like they are your friends than considering you as their masters. For example, calling cats to come to you when they are eating or cleaning themselves is useless because they just ignore you. Moreover, cats are very picky and careful to develop their love and affection toward their owners, so you need to be patient when you try to tame your cat. On the other hand, dogs’ moods and personalities seem to be predictable because they are often energetic and playful most of the time in order to show their respect for their owners. Therefore, it is much easier to gain trust from a dog than a cat. Yet, dealing with dogs when they feel threatened is very difficult to handle. It requires professional and experienced owners. The behavior of dogs when they are scared is hard to predict. They can bite you if they do not feel safe. In contrast, when cats are threatened, they give you signs that they do not want you to come near them and then run away. As a result, a cat's personality is closer to that of a human than dog’s personality. For training, dogs have an advantage as they can be trained easily compared to a cat. Dogs can be trained and be obedient in order to appease their masters. Therefore, it is great to have a dog that obeys and can do tricks. It is an advantage that makes dogs so desirable. Yet, training a dog requires experience and very much time. For a first-time pet owner, it is hard to handle a dog with a little knowledge about how to take care of a pet. Therefore, choosing a cat to gain experience is a good idea.

Furthermore, annual cost is essential to be considered when you want to adopt a pet. Cat food comes in dry or canned wet form. A young cat needs to consume one and a half cups of dry food or two cans of wet food daily. Therefore, the amount of money spent on cat food is around $400 annually. Medical costs for cats are around $150 per year. The amount a dog eats depends on its size. Dog food comes in both dry and wet forms. Most dogs need between 25 and 30 calories per pound daily. The life expectancy of dogs ranges from 7 years to 14 years. Hence, medical costs for dogs are estimated between $210 and $260 per year. According to the ASPCA (American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals), a typical cat costs $670 per year, including food, litter, and medical costs. A small dog cost approximately $600, while a medium sized dog costs $700, and a large dog costs more than $800. Therefore, cats is a better choice for middle-income families or first-time pet owners who are not sure how much they can afford to spend on a pet.

To choose a good pet, you should consider carefully how much time you can spend, the characteristics and behavior of the pet, and the annual cost of taking care of the pet. Both cats and dogs can offer human their loyalty and enjoyment. Also, they require love and affection from their owners. If you want to adopt a pet, you should understand that you must spend enough time with them. Yet, taking care of a cat does not require as much time as a dog. If you are a busy person or a first-time pet owner, cats are definitely the best choice. Cats are more independent and flexible than dogs because cats can take care of themselves. Dogs are dependent, noisy, and active, while cats are independent, silent, and deep. However, dogs are very hard to be trained because they require very much time and professional trainers. Therefore, a dog can be tough to handle for a first-time pet owner who does not have much experience of training a pet. Furthermore, the annual cost of owning a cat is much less expensive than owning a dog. Generally, a cat is more suitable for first-time pet owners than a dog.