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Can You Have Too Many Cats?

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Can You Have Too Many Cats?

By Dr. Justine Lee, PetMD

Do I really need to answer this question? (And yes, I realize this blog will piss off people who own more than 6 cats!)

Unfortunately, I do.

Years ago, I had two women who brought their cat into the emergency room at the University of Pennsylvania. Both women reeked so badly of cat urine, I couldnít even close the exam door due to my eyes burning from the ammonia smell. When I asked these women some questions about the catís environment, they couldnít answer how many cats they had. I asked, “10? 20? 60? 100?” Their reply? “Over 100.”

These two women, who were cat hoarders, didnít notice that their cat was ill until it was on deathís door, since they had so many in their “environment.” This cat was severely dehydrated, emaciated, and had a body condition score of 1 out of 9 (See†Purinaís body scoring system that we veterinarians use to evaluate weight). This cat weighed just under five pounds (instead of nine), and was so lethargic it couldnít even lift its head. (It ultimately died despite several days of hospitalization and life-saving care.)

So, can you imagine having so many cats that it prevents you from adequately being able to care for your pets?

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Read more: Animal Rights, Behavior & Communication, Cats, Everyday Pet Care, Pet Health, Pets, Safety, , ,

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Nicolas, selected from petMD

petMD is a leading online resource focused solely on the health and well-being of pets. The site maintains the world's largest pet health library, written and approved by a network of trusted veterinarians. petMD was founded to inspire pet owners to provide an ever-increasing quality of life for their pets and to connect pet owners with pet experts and other animal lovers. For more information, visit petMD.com.

755 comments

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2:58AM PST on Dec 21, 2014

Cats are wonderful company,only have one he is like a baby, follows me everywhere. Thanks for sharing

12:49AM PST on Dec 18, 2014

Thank you for posting.

3:29AM PST on Dec 8, 2014

Thank you

2:19AM PST on Dec 7, 2014

Haha Roger P, was curious enough to read the link. Pretty funny. Fortunately I live in sunny Queensland where I don't need to use any heating at all! Love cats, but one or 2 would do me.

11:51PM PST on Dec 5, 2014

Too many cats? Why not use them to help heat your home? http://www.c60design.co.uk/many-cats-take-heat-passive-house/

6:12AM PST on Nov 17, 2014

We usually have 3-5 cats & 1 or 2 dogs. They all get along fine, although some form special friendships, but the cats have access to the outdoors so they can find their own space if they want to. I think the numbers have to kept reasonably small in order to give each individual the care & attention they need. It's too easy to lose sight of a face in the crowd.

11:36AM PST on Nov 16, 2014

Thanks for sharing

4:48PM PDT on Aug 28, 2014

Interesting, thank you.

4:47PM PDT on Aug 28, 2014

Interesting, thank you.

1:14PM PDT on Aug 28, 2014

I have four cats. Two came with my spouse when we got married and the other two were rescued. I am home with them almost all the time. They all get along pretty well.

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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