Cats can be great company for older people.
Compared with dogs, cats are generally much easier pets to keep.
But are Bengal cats suitable for elderly owners?
The Bengal cat isn’t the easiest of cats at the best of times.
In this short article we take a look at whether or not Bengals are a good choice as far as pets go for elderly and older owners.
Pros Of Bengal Cat Ownership For Older Owners
- Bengal cats are great, loyal companions and can provide excellent company for people who might not have as much human interaction as they have had in their younger years (ok, we are being a bit presumptive in saying this as many older people are good at getting out and about, but we do think this point is worth mentioning).
- Bengal cats don’t require walking. Unlike a dog, which requires you to take it out for walks on a regular basis, your Bengal will be happy to explore your property and play in the garden as well as inside with any toys you provide.
- Check out our guide to the best toys for Bengal cats here, for more information on what sort of toys you should consider providing to your Bengal cat.
Cons Of Bengal Cat Ownership For Older Owners
- Bengal cats can be very energetic and potentially destructive, especially in their younger years. This can be a challenge if you are not physically fit enough to keep up with your Bengal.
- Bengals can be aggressive – and are powerful cats. Although we have debunked a number of times on this site the myth that Bengal cats are particularly aggressive compared with other cats, there is always a chance that a cat might scratch or bite when feeling threatened or vulnerable. Because Bengals are so powerful and strong, this can increase the chance of receiving serious injury. We have heard of elderly owners who have received bad scratches and bites (although also from other breeds of cats, not just Bengals). Make sure you “learn the limits” of your Bengal and do not prod or provoke them when they are irritated.
Conclusion – Are Bengal Cats Suitable For Elderly Owners?
The answer, in our opinion, is a bit of yes and a bit of no – and ultimately the suitability of a Bengal will depend very much on your living situation and health & capability.
While Bengals can be fantastic companions, they can also be highly energetic, destructive and sometimes aggressive cats.
A bite or bad scratch from a Bengal cat is not what you want – especially as you get older.
Therefore, if you are considering getting a young Bengal kitten in your “golden years”, make sure you are well prepared for the challenges you might face.
It is absolutely critical that you provide good outlets for your Bengal’s energy (read our guide here for the best toys for Bengal cats).
This will make the process much easier and more manageable.
Also bear in mind that Bengals can definitely be a bit more temperamental than “normal” cats, so this is something to be aware of.
Our Bengal (Kala) for example is not fond of being picked up. While she is incredibly friendly, it is always on her own terms and she doesn’t let you forget it!