You may think any city is a good city for a cat that has a home, but cats are notoriously picky and hard to make happy. If you were curious about your city's friendliness to felines, and the overall best (and worst) cities for cats in general, a new study gets to the heart of the matter.
The analysis, conducted by veterinary app OneVet, ranked U.S. cities according to five factors of cat-friendliness, including the prevalence of pet-friendly rental homes, the rate of cat adoptions in 2020 — a boom year for pet adoption — and the number of pet stores relative to the city’s human population.
The study does not factor in costs related to living with a cat, but does incorporate access to veterinarians as one of the data points. If you are worried about medical expenses for your cat, it may be worth considering pet insurance. The past year saw a rise in people purchasing pet insurance to help with vet costs, and the price of insuring cats has decreased slightly as a result.
Also included in the analysis: the number of cat cafes in town. If you're unfamiliar with the concept, cats can be adopted at cat cafes, but they can’t order drinks.
The best city for cats in America is Miami (Meowmi?), Florida, according to the analysis. As for the other contenders that are the cat's pajamas, so to speak, here's a list of the top 5 cities overall for cats:
- Miami, FL
- Orlando, FL
- Salt Lake City, UT
- Pittsburgh, PA
- Cincinnati, OH
The “worst” cities for kitties have fewer veterinarians, pet-friendly rental homes, adoptions and pet stores per 100,000 people, making it more challenging (at least in theory) to give your cat the life they deserve.
The analysis found the worst cities for cats are:
- New York, NY
- Memphis, TN
- New Orleans, LA
- Jacksonville, FL
- Phoenix, AZ
Our condolences if you’re a cat (or cat owner) living in one of these otherwise lovely cities. A current New York City mayoral candidate who’s the keeper of at least 12 rescue cats is one of many of the city’s residents who would likely beg to differ on his city’s spot at the bottom of the barrel.
Along individual measures of cat desirability, some other cities outperformed those at the top of the overall list. Minneapolis, for example, ranked highest for access to veterinarians, which more rural areas tend to be underserved by.
A recent study by Money and Morning Consult analyzed the best places to live for dog lovers. The top cities were Wheat Ridge, Colorado, Downers Grove, Illinois, and Rockville, Maryland, none of which made it onto OneVet’s rankings for cats. Let your cat and dog battle out your next move among themselves.
But for your cat, anywhere they get to be with you is the best place to live.