Is It Better to Get a Kitten or Puppy First?

Is It Better to Get a Kitten or Puppy First? (It Depends On Your Needs…)

Dogs and cats provide unconditional love, friendship, and affection, as well as a range of therapeutic benefits.

After all, don’t we all like a cuddle from our furry friend at the end of a busy day?

However, choosing between getting a kitten or puppy can be a tough decision.

So, Is It Better to Get a Kitten or Puppy First?

There is no definitive answer to this question. Some people have adopted either a kitten or puppy one at a time, and everything has worked fine. The best strategy to make your choice, though, will be significantly influenced by the type of lifestyle you have because cats and dogs have different needs and characteristics.

This will be less about cat versus dog and more about the pet that would best suit your lifestyle while considering your level of activity, the space available at home, if you have children or not, and how much time you will be able to give your pet. Of course, this decision will be made more difficult by the utter variety of breeds available. For instance, having a Chihuahua puppy is different from owning a Great Dane dog breed.

Who Are Puppies Best For?

Naturally, different dog breeds have different traits and characteristics.

Regardless, having a puppy as a pet is best suited for individuals who do not mind engaging in moderate activity and spending time outdoors regularly.

More so, dogs require more activity and stimulation than cats to stay healthy and happy.

Therefore, dogs are perfect for people who don’t work for long hours or travel more often.

If you are an energetic and outdoor person who loves keeping active, a puppy might be the right choice for you.

Additionally, while puppies and smaller dogs thrive well in the house and apartments, most bigger breeds have bigger space requirements and require a yard to run around.

Dogs require a lot of stimulation, regular walks, and fresh air.

This is why puppies and dogs tend to be better suited for homeowners who have a garden, have easy access to parks and open spaces, or live in rural areas.

Many different dog types and breeds are available, ranging in shape, size, hairiness, and temperament.

You should hence consider these specific breed traits if you are thinking about getting a puppy. Research different breeds and find the one that fits you best.

Eventually, if you have the time and space for a puppy pet, you will be rewarded with a playful, empathetic, faithful, and life-long companion.

Who Are Kittens Best For?

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If you have a busy lifestyle, indoor space, or want a more independent pet, a kitten might be a better choice than a puppy.

Cats need much less time, energy, and attention than dogs.

Most kittens are happy to be left alone throughout the entire day while they go around, sleep and entertain themselves.

This is why kittens tend to be a perfect choice for people searching for an independent pet.

They, however, enjoy a bit of social interaction, like being played with and regularly groomed, particularly for long-haired breeds.

More so, cats tend to require less indoor space than dogs, making them suitable for people living in smaller houses and homes.

Even without outdoor access, as long as the kitten has a scratching post, litter box, and a window to peep out, it will be fairly pleased with the apartment.

It is also important to interact with the cat frequently, meaning if you are going away, you will need to find someone to look after them regularly or placing them in a cattery where they will be monitored when you are gone.

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What Should You Consider Before Choosing to Get a Kitten or Puppy?

If you are not sure if a cat or dog is best for you, there are several factors you should consider to help you make a decision. These include;

1. Cost

Puppies tend to cost more than kittens.

If you love cats and dogs relatively equally but have a pretty tight budget, you will find that cats are cheaper and hence pocket-friendly.

Cats need relatively little food and fewer toys than dogs. They also have a fewer cost of maintenance, and there are no regular trips to the groomer.

In contrast, dogs require someone to be there daily to walk them around and need more costly toys and accessories such as collars, leashes, beds, and some durable toys.

Cats are generally happy sleeping in an empty box and playing with any items they find around the house to entertain themselves.

Generally, you should expect to spend about $1800 in your puppy’s first year of life. On the other hand, kittens average to about $1000 in their first year, which is cheaper.

2. Available Free Time

Before deciding whether to get a kitten or puppy first, it is important to consider how much free time you have. Ask yourself about how much time you have for leisure daily.

Of that leisure time, how much of it are you willing to spend with your pet?

The less free time you have, the better you will be with a kitten as a pet.

Most cats do not depend on the owner so much for companionship and are mostly fine spending time alone.

On the other hand, dogs need more time for exercise and training.

Otherwise, they will develop bad habits such as hyperactivity, destructive tendencies, excessive barking, biting, or scratching.

However, this does not mean that you should get a cat if you just come home to sleep, as this would be cruel to the cat.

Kittens also require relative interacting and care. It’s just that they have lower daily maintenance.

3. Allergies

It is most likely that you know whether you have pet allergies.

However, it would be best if you were on the checkout about whether your family members and friends have any allergies.

Bringing a new pet in your life can be upsetting, only to learn later that you could not keep it because of allergies.

For this reason, you should check if any of your frequent visitors or family members are allergic to cats or dogs before choosing your pet.

If any of them is allergic to either cats or dogs, it’s not advisable to go on with your choice without considering their wellbeing.

4. Consider Your Living Arrangements

Where you stay can impact the ideal pet for you.

Cats do well in most environments, whether you live in a tiny or huge home with a backyard. Depending on the size and breed of the dog, dogs generally need more space.

Having a backyard will help allow your dog to play on its own.

More so, if you live with other family members or roommates, the decision to have a kitten or puppy will probably be one you make together.

You should consider the preference of everyone before reaching the final decision.


Hopefully, this article will help you to decide whether to get a kitten or puppy first.

Still can’t make a choice?

Fortunately, you can get both a puppy and kitten at once.

So, if you can’t decide between a kitten or puppy and you can provide a good home to both, a kitten and puppy raised together will normally get used to living with each other and might even become the best friends.


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