best things about owning a cat

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Cats are a low-maintenance pet

Especially when compared with dogs, cats make our lives easy. They don’t require exercising and are usually independent – sometimes to the point of aloofness.

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Cats lower stress

Stroking pets makes us release oxytocin, which reduces cortisol and can help us to feel less anxious.

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A cat’s purr

Extraordinarily, the purr has benefits for humans too. Not only does it soothe us, reduce anxiety, and make us feel happy, but its particular frequency of vibrations can increase bone density and reduce stress by relaxing our muscles.

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Mental health benefits

So many aspects of cat ownership help to reduce stress, from the sensation of stroking them to their therapeutic purr to the sense of purpose they give us in our daily life

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Rodent control

Cats are superb mousers. They are natural-born killers and have a predatory instinct to hunt down small animals such as mice and rats, and even insects in the home.

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A peaceful pet

Yes, cats can be fairly vocal in their communication, but it’s mostly at a fairly low level  – compare a meow to a bark.

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You don’t need to stay at home all day

Cats tend to sleep for most of the day, while you’re out at work, as they are crepuscular, meaning they are most active at dawn and dusk.

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They are relatively long-lived

Compared to many domestic pets, such as hamsters, guinea pigs and rabbits, at an average of 13-14 years, cats live for a decent chunk of a human life

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Prevent allergies

Given that cat allergies are the most common indoor allergy after house dust mites, this may come as a surprise. However, studies such as this one from the National Library of Medicine show that if a child is exposed in early life to cats,

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Boost heart health

Thanks to cats being associated with the reduction of stress and blood pressure, several studies, such as this 2009 paper from the Journal of Vascular and Interventional Neurology

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Playtime

Cats might not be as needy as some other pets, but they do love to play. Find your inner child by blowing bubbles, playing hide-and-seek or setting up an edible treasure hunt.

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Kittens

Even if you’re “not a cat person”, you’d need a strong will to meet a litter of kittens and not want to take one home.

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