Have you considered adding a feline family member to your pack? Cats not only provide constant companionship and hours of entertainment, but they also improve your life in many unseen ways.

Here are some 6 MAJOR benefits of adopting a cat.

They Reduce Stress

Cats are scientifically proven to reduce stress. Whether they rub up against your legs, curl up in your lap, or lay down in front of you for a belly rub, when cats touch you, oxytocin gets released in the brain. Oxytocin not only reduces stress, it also lowers your blood pressure, boosts your immune system, and helps combat anxiety and depression. Even looking at a cat can cause the release of oxytocin in your brain. Cats are also independent creatures by nature and typically aren’t as demanding of attention as a dog, or another person might be. The fact they want to spend time around you without the need for your focus or attention is another calming aspect of their personality.

Of course, cats can be a source of comedic relief as well. No matter how serious they seem to take themselves, it’s not an uncommon experience to witness your cat get a case of the zoomies, start hunting random shadows or reflections in your home or jump multiple feet in the area at random sounds.

They Help Control Pests

Even if your cat has never been outside, they’ll still have the instinct to hunt small animals, bugs, or even snakes in your home. For thousands of years, humans have kept cats as a way to reduce the rodent population in or around their homes, and that remains true today. While the days of the black plague are well behind us, many mice can still carry bacteria that can cause serious illness in humans. They also help keep these pests away from the food in your cabinets.

cat hunting indoors

They Help Reduce Allergies (In Children)

Bringing a cat into a home with a small child may help your child build a stronger immune system! There is scientific evidence that children exposed to pets, especially in their first two years, have a reduced chance of developing allergies. A recent study found babies raised with a cat or dog in the home were 77% less likely to develop any environmental allergies! Although cats sometimes have a reputation for being aloof and stand-offish, a cat with the right temperament can be tremendously patient and gentle with children. There is also strong evidence that children raised with pets develop more balanced emotional, cognitive, and social skills.

cat and child

They Provide Companionship

When you adopt a cat, you aren’t only adopting a pet, you’re bringing a new family member into your home! Cats provide constant companionship, no judgment, and show affection daily. Beyond the physical health benefits, cat companionship can also have a positive effect on mental health. Research has shown that cats can provide the same mood-boosting abilities that a partner or friend can and improve the physical, social, and emotional lives of humans. Not only that, but one recent study in Australia found that cat ownership was directly tied to lowered levels of depression and anxiety, better overall sleep, and more balanced psychological health!

cat looking up at owner

They’re Low Maintenance

Compared to many other pets, cats are relatively low maintenance and are easy to care for. Unlike dogs, cats don’t require the outdoors to do their business, and they won’t require you leaving home to provide them exercise either. An average of 30 minutes of exercise or play per day is all that is required to keep a cat mentally and physically healthy. Other than that, a daily litter scoop, consistent supply of food and fresh water, and regular veterinarian check-ups should be all your feline family member needs to remain happy in your home!

cat drinking out of water bowl


You Save A Life (Or Two)

When you adopt a cat, you not only save their life, but you open a spot for another cat in the shelter or rescue organization. In the United States alone, about 3.2 million cats pass through the shelter system each year. That volume of animals puts an increasingly arduous demand on shelter staff to provide medical and day-to-day care. Rescuing a cat is a great way to help your local shelter or rescue organization reduce this  financial burden.

cat in shelter

Just like rescue dogs, rescue cats tend to be grateful and eager to please their new owners. They’ll appreciate the personalized attention and care they don’t always receive amongst the large animal populations at shelters. Additionally, most organizations will provide a first round of shots and, if necessary, a spay or neuter with your adoption fee.