Should I Get My Cat a Kitten Playmate?

See if a younger cat can help your older cat to play more.

By Marilyn Krieger, CCBC

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Cat and Kitten
A young kitten might help your older cat to run around, but there are other ways to encourage your cat to exercise.

Q: My 3-year-old cat, Tipper, is overweight and doesn’t like to do much of anything. I can tell she wants to play, but when I try to play with her she runs away. Nothing seems to make her want to get up and move. I thought about getting another cat for her to play with, but I don’t know if she’ll get along with a new kitten. I’m afraid she’ll try to hurt it or that she’ll get depressed. Do you think a second cat is a good idea?

A: Instead of acquiring an exercise buddy for Tipper, take her to the veterinarian for a checkup and for a diet plan. Obesity can be very dangerous for a cat. Your vet should be able to suggest a good diet for Tipper as well as discuss with you how much food Tipper should be given on a daily basis.

Along with a good diet plan, putting your cat on an exercise program may help slim her down. Before starting an exercise plan, talk to your vet about Tipper’s obesity and ask your vet to check her for any other possible health issues. Your vet may have a gradual exercise plan appropriate for Tipper’s condition, weight and activity level.

I don’t recommend adopting a young kitten to help get Tipper in tip top shape right now. Bringing in another kitten can create other problems, can stress Tipper and could exacerbate the problem.

Find more information on cats and kittens >>

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Reader Comments

Megan    International

6/22/2015 2:59:04 PM

When I got myself a small dog I was surprise my 14 year old cat stay around after the dog is always bugging him as I never had a dog before. But I think is was because I slowly introduce my dog to the cat.

tatiana    tampa, FL

3/20/2014 3:08:18 PM

older cats never move and they sleep all day

GracieLove    Reno, NV

11/11/2013 1:33:13 PM

Good to know!

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