Media – Kitten Selection


Choose your Friends Carefully

I never had a cat and I decided to have my first one now. I wanna get it in adoption and I know it’s difficult to choose a breed but just in case; is it true that some breeds like Bengal and Siamese have not a good character? I also heard and read that it is much better to have a female than a male.

Dr. Nichol:
Well, now, let’s not be feline racists. Some of my best friends are Bengals and Siamese. Heck, I’ve been to their houses for dinner and attended their weddings. I won’t tolerate feline sexism either. Two of my best friends are boy cats, darn it.

Beyond these lofty platitudes, there are useful generalizations regarding cat breeds. At the risk incurring hisses and growls it’s true that many Bengals are less social with humans and a bit wild. Siamese are more likely to enjoy snuggle time however they can be rather vocal; spirited repartees with their people are common.

Whether you adopt a pure breed or a mix I encourage you to choose carefully. You’ll find a range of personalities within a breed and even within a litter. Stay detached as you observe as many candidates as possible. Unlike puppies it is not uncommon for a kitten to feign deafness when asked, “Will you accept this rose?”

Go to my website ( for “Choosing the Greatest Kitten for Your Life”. I have a video, by the same name, on You Tube. Take this process seriously but don’t put too fine a point on it. For example, research has found a link between coat color and temperament with many black and calico cats being less social than orange tabbies. There are plenty of exceptions.

Prepare your home before you start your search. You6’ll want the kid to delight in your assortment of floor-to-ceiling climbing, perching, and hiding opportunities. Stalk and pounce games will bring out your shiny new cat’s inner predator. The section of my website on “Feline Environmental Enrichments” will serve you both well.
For help with behavior problems, you can sign-up for a Zoom Group Conference on my website,

Dr. Jeff Nichol is a residency-trained veterinary behaviorist. He provides consultations in-person and in groups by Zoom (505-792-5131). Each week he shares a blog and a Facebook Live video to help bring out the best in pets and their people. Sign up at no charge at Post pet behavioral or physical questions on or by US Post to 4000 Montgomery Blvd. NE, Albuq, NM 87109.