Feline Wellness

Why Kittens are Happier in Pairs

March 19, 2024

A lot of people think that cats are solitary creatures, but that isn’t quite true. Cats, and especially kittens, thrive with feline friends. Many rescues even have a policy that their kittens are adopted in pairs. This is because kittens learn from each other. Being in homes with other cats is beneficial for their physical, mental, and emotional health. 

Kittens are very curious and they crave constant stimulation. Out of boredom, a single kitten will often entertain themselves by chewing on electric cords or plants or scratching the curtains or the couch. They don’t know they are doing anything wrong or dangerous. They just have a lot of energy and nobody to play with. If they have another kitten friend, it’s less likely they will behave destructively. They’ll be too busy playing and wrestling with their buddy.

Kittens need a cat friend to wrestle and tumble with. They naturally want to claw and bite and if they don’t have a cat to do that with, they will choose you and especially your hands and feet. While this may seem cute when they are so small, unless they unlearn the behavior, they will continue to do so as an adult. Ouch! When they have a kitten friend, on the other paw, if they bite too hard or play too rough the friend will cry or squeal and let them know. They will learn when they are being “too much” and can tone down their antics so everyone is having fun. 

Kittens are very active at night. Kittens have A LOT of energy and use it throughout the day. Even though you are tired from a long day and are ready for bed, a kitten has nothing but time. A single kitten is likely to keep their human awake at night by running around, jumping, pouncing, and having a great time. They won’t understand why you want to sleep when there’s so much fun to be had. With a kitten pal to keep them company and tire them out throughout the day, nighttime “zoomies” are minimized. 

For healthy social development, kittens need to be around other kittens. The majority of kittens in shelters and rescues come in litters and if and when a solo kitten comes in, after a period of isolation, that kitten usually joins another litter or is matched with another solo kitten. Kittens learn from each other. They learn how to eat on their own, how to use a litter box, how to play, how to cuddle… all the basics of being a cat. Taking a kitten away from their littermates can delay their emotional, social, and sometimes even their physical development. Kittens who get to stay with a littermate tend to be happier, healthier, and more socialized. When kittens are thriving in an environment with their kitten friends, it isn’t in their best interest to remove them from that situation.

As much as you want to adopt a kitten and can provide a great home, humans are not a substitute for other kittens. No matter how much time you spend at home, or how many wonderful toys and treats you can provide, a kitten is happiest and most fulfilled when they’re with other kittens. A pair of kittens will definitely be tons of fun and provide you with all the love and attention you desire. But when you are working, sleeping, or just out living your life, your kitten will have a friend so they will never be alone. Cats are highly social creatures and most of us really don’t like being alone. 

Two kittens may seem like a lot or more than you can handle, but, in the long run, they will be happier and what more can you ask for then that?

Love, Nala