Chris Kouwenhoven


When two is better than one


While we may pride ourselves on how we pamper our pets with the best of everything, we may be denying them what they need most-the companionship of one of their own species. Most feline behaviorists agree that cats generally lead healthier, happier lives if there is another feline in the household. Even if the cats never become bosom buddies, just sharing the house with another living creature while you are away helps to break the monotony and loneliness. Of course, if they become playmates, there is the added benefit of exercise and entertainment that is especially needed by kittens and young adult cats. Many cases of playful aggression directed toward the owner as well as various forms of household destruction, can be prevented if the cat's energies are focused on a playmate. Young males (3-24 months) have an especially strong need for a "buddy". While owners of rambunctious young males often hesitate to take on another cat, those who take that "leap of faith" and get another young male are generally delighted to see how much the "boys" enjoy each other.

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