Daily Archives: June 20, 2016
Meowllo everypawdy, welcome to miserable Monday. It’s not miserable, we just like callin’ it that cuz it’s da end of da weekend. Anyways, you ask and we’re gonna tell. Today’s posty will be in the human English flavor so it can be translated and/or easily read by anybody as it’s one of me’s educational postys. We were asked many times while searchin’ for a new kitty just what qualities or traits would make a good Service kitty? Is there a particular breed that is predisposed to being good Service kitties? And we’ve been asked many times, “I already have a cat at home, can she be trained as a Service Cat for me/my child/etc.”. And we even had an application turned down by a rescue who didn’t want their kitties to be working cats. We don’t blame the rescue, we blame ignorance. But me will save that for part 2.
Now remember Service Animals are different than Therapy Animals, Companion Animals and Pets. For a complete description please see our Service Animal page in the menu tab or click here. And Please, DO NOT pass off your Therapy animal, Companion animal or Pet as a Service Animal. And remember, there are always exceptions to every rule. You are dealing with living, breathing, thinking sentient beings. The amount of time you spend with an animal will also play a role in their personality. Alright, let’s jump into this.
Let’s answer the last question first. Mommy believes any cat can be trained. So, if you already have a cat that you are bonded too, then YES, he/she can be trained as a Service Cat. The operative word is “Bonded”. A cat will be most closely bonded with it’s primary caregiver. If you don’t have a cat or aren’t bonded with the cat in your home then we do recommend getting a kitten. Kittens have very short attention spans, and see training as an adventure. We recommend adopting a kitten under the age of 8 months. For the purpose of this article we are going to focus on a young kitten between the ages of 6 to 8 weeks.
So, you’ve decided you need a Service animal and you want it to be a cat. Keep in mind cats are fairly small animals so there are limits to what they can do. Don’t expect your Service Cat to perform tasks contrary to their nature or size. Also keep in mind that the ADA doesn’t recognize them as Service Animals. For the full definition please see our Service Animal page. Okay, you’ve thought it over, looked into the laws (state/country and federal) and you’ve determined a cat is the right animal for your needs; where do you find one? Most likely you will have to train the kitten yourself, so decide what training method you want to use and Be Faithful with it. Training is repetition, day in and day out. You can find your Service Kitty in Training anywhere. Rescues, shelters, breeders and neighborhood strays are where you start. We do not recommend ferals or semi-ferals as too much training time is lost just getting kitty to trust humans.
Things to keep in mind when searching for your Service Cat:
How big will kitty be when he/she grows up?
Is kitty chatty or quiet?
Does kitty appear to be outgoing and confident or shy and withdrawn?
Will you need kitty to travel outside your home to perform his/her duties?
Does kitty have long fur or short?
If long, can you provide daily grooming?
Does kitty appear healthy? Get kitty checked by a VET ASAP after adopting!