As much as I love Sniff, my 20-year-old tabby cat, I can’t pretend that cats make good pets. They don’t, for several reasons.
Table of Contents
- 1:23 #1. Cats often need to eat at least some meat
- 3:57 #2. Cats are picky eaters
- 6:23 #3. Cats love to kill things.
- 8:15 #4. Cats love to roam
- 11:43 #5. Cats are kind of toxic
- 13:00 #6. Did I mention cats are toxic?
- 13:57 #7. Cats make lots of other cats
#1. I am not saying that you cannot have a cat.
#2. I’m not saying that vegans cannot adopt cats.
#3. I am NOT saying that Vegan’s with cats are fake vegans, it’s a complex issue.
I do think it’s wrong to breed a cat or to buy a cat from a breeder – see my last video on this topic here  – but I’m not making this video in order to judge people, in order to judge vegans or anyone who has or wants to adopt a cat.
This video is merely to inform, to talk about the problems surrounding cats, as well as some solutions for more industrious owners, cat owners to try solutions that are personally just too difficult for me.
It’s why I personally – just me – why I will not be adopting another cat, any cat in the future after my wonderful Sniff who you cannot see right now my 20 year old cats Sniff passes. My other two cats McGurk and Finnegan they passed just last year unfortunately, but once he goes that will be the last cat that I will have. I may adopt another pet a dog or something in the future when I’m able to but not a cat.
Okay so now on to the reasons, the reasons why I will not be adopting another cat.
So I actually do have a video on this very detailed very long it’s like minute long video on feeding cats vegan as well as dogs mostly focused on cat so check that out if you want to see that but just briefly it is possible to feed a cat a vegan diet and have them thrive and be healthy but it’s very difficult particularly for males because it means monitoring their their urine pH on a regular basis and making their food from these mixes that you have to mix up and cook and all of that stuff in order to avoid stone formation that can be life threatening so this is from the vegan cats website I mentioned this again in that video I have on feeding cats vegan they recommend never to feed a male a strictly kibble diet and ideally to not feed them any kibble whatsoever to feed them one of their wet mixes using the the veggie cat pH it’s basically a supplement that you mix in with other ingredients to make the cat food they also say have their urine pH checked by veterinarian or with your own testing strips as outlined above not just once but periodically if the pH is over . or if crystals are detected in the urine you may need to introduce a methionine supplement into the diet and then get another pH reading done to make sure the supplement has been effective so this is time consuming and potentially very expensive if you are having a veterinarian doing this checking the urine pH and whatnot and as vegan cats notes most people are just they’re not going to do this they may try it but they’re likely not going to stick with it and unfortunately that’s been their experience although we have been giving advice for some time on how these problems can be minimized while still feeding a completely vegan diet we have found that many of our customers have not been following this advice so if you’re up for it if you are up for regularly checking the urine pH of your cat and making the food you know obviously not homemade food but from these professional mixes something like the veggie cat pH formula awesome without any testing if you want to forgo the pH testing you might be able to feed your male cat fifty to seventy-five percent vegan if the cat has no history of stones which is obviously an improvement over feeding one hundred percent meat and if you have or you adopt a female cat it will probably be easier to feed that cat vegans and females are not as prone to these urinary tract problems however…
So even if you go through the trouble of finding a vegan cat food a healthy vegan cat food mixing up the veggie cat with all the other ingredients making the recipes and all that kind of stuff doesn’t mean your cat’s going to be cool it your cat may be like my cat and he may be cool with it for a little bit and then it’s like nadal just for some reason he decides he doesn’t like it anymore so this is actually potentially a huge issue because a couple of days just a couple of days fasting for a cat can be very dangerous it can actually kill them cats particularly middle-aged cats are at risk for hepatic lipid OSIS normally when a body is undernourished or starved the body automatically moves fat from its reserves to the liver to be converted into lipoproteins for energy cats bodies are not designed to convert large stores of fat so when a cat is in starvation mode the fat that is released to the liver is not processed efficiently resulting in a fatty and low functioning liver as the fat accumulates in the liver it becomes swollen and turns yellow because it is not able to process red blood cells efficiently the yellow pigment that makes up a portion of the red blood cell is released into the bloodstream causing a yellowing of the eyes if not treated promptly hepatic lipid OSIS can lead to various complications and eventually death this condition also frequently occurs in conjunction with illness periods of stress changes in diet diabetes kidney disease cancer aggressive weight loss attempts by owners and being lost away from home in meals by the way this is also why releasing a domesticated cat into the wild is probably a death sentence if the cat hasn’t learned to hunt effectively or it hasn’t developed a taste for small animals it just doesn’t have the time to do so maybe you’re lucky and your cat will eat vegan you just you found the one cat that’s not picky good for you or you know maybe your cat will only meet but it will eat one of the cat foods that’s composed you know mostly of by-products which is better than I talked about this again in the video on feeding cats vegan or maybe unfortunately the only thing that your cat will eat is the premium stuff which means that you could be killing hundreds of chickens or worse to keep your picky cat alive.
Cats hunt even if they aren’t hungry even if your cat is well-fed even if your cat loves the food that it eats if it gets outside it will very likely hunt and kill lots of small animals free-ranging cats on Islands have caused or contributed to thirty three fourteen percent of the modern bird mammal and reptile extinctions mounting evidence from three continents indicates that cats can also locally reduce mainland bird and mammal populations and cause a substantial proportion of total wildlife mortality despite these harmful effects policies for management of free-ranging cat populations and regulation of pet ownership behaviors are dictated by animal welfare issues rather than ecological impacts based on the study’s estimation of up to four billion birds and twenty two point three billion mammals killed by free roaming domestic cats a year with thirty one percent of that being caused by owned cats your kitty if you let him or her outside which is between forty and seventy percent of the million owned cats could be responsible for thirty-seven bird deaths and over small mammal deaths every year or in total over years of life at least six hundred and possibly over animals on top of that they may even kill other tests if they aren’t killed themselves since death by cat fight is one of the two leading causes of mortality in outdoor cats the Charlie problem I showed earlier adjusted for the true scale of destruction caused by domestic cats looks quite different of course if you feed your cat vegan and are lucky enough that they actually like the food and you keep them indoors then this isn’t an issue however…
Cats get bored and prefer to roam.
Recent research tracking a number of cats showed that some feral cats have ranges of over a thousand acres:
The owned cats had significantly smaller territories and tended to stay close to home. The mean home range for pet cats in the study was less than two hectares (4.9 acres).
While that is substantially smaller, it shows that given the opportunity, even cats who primarily live indoors, inside of the house, they prefer to roam and go farther than just the backyard.
It’s not clear if the primary reason for roaming is because they like to hunt or it’s just because they enjoy walking around, assuming it is the roaming itself that the cats enjoy, well if you have a two hundred thousand square foot mansions then your cats are probably going to be pretty fulfilled. If you don’t happen to have a house that big, which obviously you probably don’t, what you can do is have like an outdoor, enclosed cat run, you could also have some cat runs inside, these constructions can effectively increase your cats play area, although it’s not clear by how much.
Taking your cat for walks on a leash and harness MAY be a good idea, but probably not for the average cat. Walking a cat is NOT like walking a dog, and you really should only do it in areas without any dogs present (coming across a loose dog with a penchant for chasing/killing cats is a recipe for disaster).
All in all, a cat patio is likely a better option for most cats.
Unfortunately the average apartment is only about a thousand square feet, that’s less than 1% of the space that they would prefer to roam around in and all of these extras, the cat runs and everything else, they are expensive and time consuming. Not everybody wants to spend thousands of dollars creating a cat paradise and nor should they, it’s not a very good use of money, when that money could save so many lives, when it is devoted to more effective altruism, like for instance giving it to Mercy for Animals, which you can do right here. 
You can also help to have fewer cats, particularly if they are over two years old, as a recent study suggested, while kittens actually like to have a lot of playmates, older cats really don’t tolerate a lot of company. The important point here is that cats are not dogs, they don’t like to go out on walks with you if you typically don’t like to be on a leash,* they don’t like to go for a walk, they don’t relish human contact like dogs do, they don’t really like contact with other cats, there aren’t cat parks where they can go run and play.
Dogs are a serious commitment too obviously, they need you know at least a couple of walks a day, they need a lot of time with you, but contrary to popular opinion cats really do require a lot more work, cats who are cooped up in such sub-optimal conditions, which they very likely are, most cats are, it’s pretty much the norm, they can become lethargic, they can overeat and they really don’t seem to live very happy lives.
Dogs have evolved along with humans for many thousands of years and there are good reasons to believe that well cared for dogs are happy, they’re happy in our company. But we just don’t know a whole lot about the psychological state of cats, of domesticated cats who really at this point are only marginally domesticated, people think that cats are easier, but I really think that the opposite is probably true, it’s just that cat’s needs are so often misunderstood and ignored.
*talking about the average cat here (there are rare exceptions)
Cats are disease vectors this is particularly true of younger cat and cats who go outdoors but it can affect indoor cats as well based on lingering infection as a carrier or caught from pests entering the home cats can bring disease threats into your home and it can pose a problem could pose a risk to your other pets to you and to your family the most dangerous to people is one that cats commonly carry because it reproduces inside of them toxoplasmosis and toxoplasmosis is as a reliant on cats as malaria is on mosquitoes without cats it would be eradicated the acute form is usually only life-threatening to the very young to the unborn to people who are immunocompromised but even in a healthy adult the toxoplasmosis parasite may be harmful studies have found that infected individuals are at an increased risk for suicide attempts schizophrenia and poor cognitive performance the human suffering that cats cause in this case much like mosquitoes is hardly their fault but when you add it up with all of the other problems all of the other damage caused by cats it’s not exactly helping their case.
Cat poop and cat litter are toxic waste thanks to the toxoplasmosis parasite which again is present in their fecal matter in places like California you are not allowed to flush cat feces studies are showing that toxoplasmosis a parasite found in cat feces have infected marine mammals and otters toxoplasmosis cannot be destroyed by sewage treatment and therefore escapes into our waterways where crabs and starfish will feed on it thus jeopardizing the health of other marine mammals who feed on the craft and starfish toxoplasmosis can cause brain damage and death in sea otters there’s nothing to do with cat poop except for burn it or bury it where it will then ferment into methane as we know a potent greenhouse gas see my video on food waste here where I discussed this issue with regard to kitchen waste and finally:
Cats breed incredibly fast, cats can have as many as no line at kittens but on average it’s about four per litter and they can have a litter as soon as six months of age given a – male to female ratio that is tripling the female cat population every six months one pregnant kitty ready to give birth becomes three pregnant Kitty’s ready to give birth just six months later which becomes nine six months after that and then and then female cats pregnant ready to give birth at two years and the male cats on to that and you have a population of cats in just two years from one pregnant cat it is actually worse than that because six months is only the time it takes for a newborn kitten to be ready to give birth an adult cat can have kittens every four months the only things that just barely keep their populations in check our disease murder and starvation it cannot be stressed enough just how important it is to always spay and neuter your cats even if you think your cats will never get outdoors please spay and neuter your cats it is a moral obligation to do so if you don’t you run the risk of creating or cast cats in feral conditions that will suffer in those feral conditions and also people that will suffer those cats and their diseases in addition spaying and neutering can help to reduce the desire to roam that primal desire to Rome which can make your cats happier as indoor pets or at least less miserable the only thing more cruel than leaving a cat intact with a powerful sex drive and keeping it away from any mates would be to let the cat out doors to breed multiple generations of feral kittens who are doomed to suffer follow the Golden Rule here assuming you could never have sex you had no way to release any sexual frustration remember cats don’t even have porn would you rather have a stronger sex drive or a weaker sex drive in such a situation I would want to be spayed or neutered to reduce my suffering.
If you must get a cat, adopt and please get a female, get her spayed, never let her outside and do your best to feed her vegan. Beyond that try to make her tiny prison as engaging as possible and for you try to find some way to cope with your contribution to the billions of pounds of cat poops that’s rotting in landfills every year.
So those are the reasons why I will not be adopting another cat as much as I love cats and I really do adore cats, I’ve never lived without, I’m really not a dog person, I know he spent all the time hyping up dogs but I really am a cat person, I just think they’re so cool.
I haven’t ever since I was a little baby we’ve had at least one cat so it does make me very sad to think that sometime very likely in the near future given sniffs very, very old, a hinge I will no longer have a cat that’s very sad, but I just cannot reconcile all of the problems; the problems for the cat itself, for the environment, for the wildlife, for humans, I can’t reconcile that with the benefits.
So that’s it guys, thank you so much for watching, I hope you enjoyed this video, I know it’s not a very happy one but I think it’s a pretty important one, it’s one that I’ve not wanted to do at all because it makes me sad but uh but yeah I hope you enjoyed it. I hope you got something out of it, if you want to subscribe obviously subscribe and I will have a new video hopefully soon.
VeganCats.com on feeding cats meat
Fatty Liver Disease in Cats
The impact of free-ranging domestic cats on wildlife of the United States
Researchers track the secret lives of feral and free-roaming house cats
DO CATS REALLY HATE PETTING?
Is Toxoplasma Gondii Infection Related to Brain and Behavior Impairments in Humans? Evidence from a Population-Representative Birth Cohort
Don’t flush cat feces down the toilet