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Can cats be emotional support animals?

Last Updated: June 6th, 2022; Author:Blake quinn
Can cats be emotional support animals?
Home » Can cats be emotional support animals?

Did you know that;

Cats were used to worship as gods?

Don’t give a dead look at your lazy cat after reading this.
We know this fact is hard to believe after seeing your slothful cat dozing in the corner of your room.

However, this is true. In early 3000 B.C.E., Egyptians worshipped their cats because they believed that kitties were mystic creatures, which brought good luck in human lives.

Well, worship is a bit much, but we love and adore our cats.
Dog lovers can never understand what our kittens mean to us. Cats are full of attitude, but love like no human can ever do.

Cats are clever animals and very easy to pet. However, most cat owners have a basic doubt :

“Can I Register My cat as an Emotional Support Animal?”

Favorably, Yes!! Studies have shown a great decline in symptoms of anxiety, depression, stress, and, many more; in people who stay with kittens.

Let’s find out. Why?

Why Cats are the best emotional support animal?

Wait,
“Why not?”

These cute little devils are even one of the initial choices while looking to adopt an ESA.

Let us clarify this by firstly explaining to you what an ESA is?
Rest will be easy for you to connect the dots.

An ESA is an animal that provides emotional assistance to its owner who suffers from mental illness. Here the principal point is emotional assistance.

Cats have a calming behavior and bond with humans very quickly. They love soft and warm spots; that’s why they prefer to stay close to heat-radiating sources like a human body. A kitty will cling to your legs, arms and will sit on your lap as their own personal bed. Being petite, it’s easy to carry these cuties anywhere.
With their loving and cuddly nature, they quickly find their way into our hearts. That’s what makes it obvious for us to depend on them emotionally.
These love balls are easy to bond and love; that’s what makes them the best ESA.
However, many people also ask;

“Can cats be service animals?”

Sadly, only dogs qualify for service animals. There is no term as service cat.

How To Qualify For An ESA cat?

Now we have assured you that cats are the best ESA and why.
Now comes the question: do you qualify for an ESA cat?
Well, we don’t doubt that you will take care of your kitty properly. It depends on the fact that your mental condition gives you the legal right to stay with your ESA cat?
To qualify for an ESA cat, as per DSM-V, you should have any medical condition that sustainably limits your abilities to participate in daily life activities that a person may be subject to but is not limited to;

  • Depression

  • Anxiety

  • Stress

  • Trauma

  • Disorders

  • Panic attacks

  • and more.

List of Emotional Support Cat Breeds:

We guess you are now ready to adopt a cat.

But here comes the question:
“Which Cat breeds to choose as an ESA ?”

There are different cat breeds to choose from. You can pick any one of them. We have listed a few of our favorites popular cat breeds:

Persian cat

Persian Cat
If you remember Snowbell from Stuart Little, she is a beautiful white Persian cat. Just like in the movie, they adore their owners. However, due to their beautiful coat, Black Persian cats are also getting immense popularity these days.

Bombay cat

Bombay cat
Black Bombay cat has soft velvet fur. A few decades back, Burmese and black American Shorthair cats crossed to produce a Bombay kitten.

Munchkin cat:

munchkin cat
Munchkin cat is the most beautiful cat in the world. They are found cute because of their short legs and stout appearance

Turkish angora

Turkish angora
White Turkish angora is one of the rare breeds of cats, and that is why it is one the most expensive cat breed. These are famous by the name Angora or Ankara cat.

Siberian cat

Siberian Cat
Siberian forest cat is a world-famous Russian cat. Siberian kittens are pretty playful and grow very slowly. It can take up to 5 years for a Siberian cat to reach up to adulthood.

Chartreux

Chartreux
Chartreux kitten is a French breed that is also quite rare in the world. These have a wide variety of eye colors, from gold to copper.

Maine coon kitten

Orange maine coon
Orange Maine coon is one of the giant North American cat breeds. White Maine coon are considered a top choice for domestic pets due to their excellent understanding with owners and lovely behavior with kids.

How to register an Emotional Support Cat?

To register your cat as an emotional support animal, you must certify it with a legitimate ESA letter.

So, What is an ESA Letter?

As you know, an ESA stands for Emotional Support Animal, and an ESA Letter is something that defines its legitimacy. In simple words, an ESA Letter is a legitimate document that proves that your pet is an emotional support animal. Here the legitimacy is provided by a Mental Health professional.

As per the definition,

“An ESA Letter is a legitimate document written and signed by an LMHP(Licensed Mental Health Professional.) This letter recommends a Mentally or Emotionally ill Patient can have an Emotional Support animal as a part of the ongoing treatment program.”

Who can write an ESA Letter to register an Emotional Support Cat

As we mentioned earlier, as per the laws, an LMHP (Licensed mental health practitioner) can evaluate your mental or emotional illness and write an ESA Letter; if they approve, you can improve your ailment with an ESA cat. Basically, following LMHP can assess your ESA cat application;

  • A licensed psychiatrist

  • A Licensed Cognitive-Behavioral Therapist

  • A licensed psychologist

  • A Licensed Addiction Therapist

  • A Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist

  • A licensed Professional Counselor

  • A Licensed Clinical Social Worker

  • A Licensed Behavioral Therapist

  • A licensed doctor qualified to conduct mental health assessments

  • Any Licensed Mental Health Professional

Ensure that while applying for an ESA Letter, the LHMP is licensed in your state; otherwise, the ESA Letter will be considered invalid.

Where to register your emotional support cat?

In order to register your cat with an ESA Letter, you need to look out for an ESA Letter providing service. Fast ESA letter can help you with this. You need to follow the following steps to get an ESA Letter;

  • Apply online by filling up an evaluation form:

    Apply and Fill in evaluation form mentioning your medical details and answer all the queries related to your cat.
    Take your time and respond to all the questions carefully, as this will help the health professional evaluate your application.

  • Get evaluated by licensed health professionals:
    Once you submit your evaluation form, a health professional will soon evaluate the form. If the health professional finds your application genuine to own an ESA cat, they will approve your ESA cat application.
  • Get approved for the ESA letter:
    You will get your ESA letter via email soon after the doctor’s approval. This letter will provide you legal access to have an emotional support cat.

Why should I register my cat as an Emotional support cat?

Under the American Fair Housing Act, section 504 of the rehabilitation act, emotional support cats are protected and provided with the privileges that the U.S. government doesn’t offer to normal cats.

Under these acts, it is unlawful for the public, private, or housing authorities that attain some financial assistance to discriminate against disabled individuals.

Therefore, the housing authorities need to approve reasonable accommodation requests for disabled individuals. Here, if the reasonable accommodation request is for an emotional support cat, housing authorities are obliged to grant it.

Thus, under the laws mentioned above, the cats certified with ESA Letters are given the following privileges;

  • You can stay with your Emotional support cat even in a no-pet apartment.

  • You don’t need to pay any extra fees or security charges to keep your Emotional support cat with you.

  • If you are a student, you can stay with your ESA Cat in the school or college dorm.

  • You can take your emotional support cat to Airbnb to stay with you.


  • Although the Offices are not obliged to allow emotional support animals, showing an ESA letter will highlight that your cat is an emotional support cat and it needs to be with you for your mental health. After understanding the health concerns of their employees, most of the employees usually agree on an allowance of emotional support cats in the workplace. Further emotional support cats are small and easy to handle in the place of work; therefore, keeping an ESA cat in the office is not much of a problem.

    Can I Fly with my emotional Support cat?

    Earlier, Under the Air Carrier Access Act, the Department of Transportation used to allow emotional support animals on the plane. However, at the start of 2021, the ACAA fetched its protections for emotional support animals. Therefore DOT no longer obligates airlines to allow emotional support animals.

    However, some airlines still allow emotional support animals, and some charge pet fees like that for normal pets.

    If you want to fly with your emotional support cat;
    You can check our blog on “Which Airlines are still Allowing Emotional Support Animals?
    Or you can directly call the airlines and ask if they allow emotional support cats on their planes or not.

    After confirming over the call, if the airlines you wish to travel with your ESA Cat allow emotional support animals, you need to follow the following steps;


    • Submit Vaccination documents of your emotional support cat

    • Submit ESA Letter as proof that your cat is an emotional support cat

    • Fill out other necessary forms required by the airlines, mainly confirming your liability if your cat misbehaves or causes any harm.


    Cats are one of the most poise, calm pets that are easy to handle and carry anywhere. Therefore, airlines don’t have much issue allowing emotional support cats on their planes. Still, it would be best to confirm that with the airlines before appearing without any verification with your emotional support cat at the airport.

    Frequently Asked Questions?

    Can cats eat dog food?

    It seems like dogs or cats are both pets; you can give dog food to your kitty.
    Well, one occasional  bite won’t harm your kitty.

    However, if you are looking for our opinion, please don’t do that in long term. Cat and dogs have very different nutritional needs. You should serve a proper meal with balanced protein, vitamins, and fats to your kitten.

    Especially observing,

    “How much food to feed my Cat?”

    We suggest you give two protein-rich meals, basically breakfast and dinner, to your fur baby.
    Now, if you are thinking;

    “What do cats like to eat for breakfast?”

    Instead of Fancy feast cat food, try to prepare home food. We love our cats so much that finding a few minutes in a day to prepare food for them won’t be trouble.

    Here are a few ideas to choose from:

    • Cooked fish like tuna
    • Grilled green vegetables
    • Omelet
    • Rice and cooked meat-

    Do cats dream?

    If you find your kitten “meowing” in sleep, don’t be surprised. It might be the case that your kitty must be dreaming about having a tuna feast.
    It sounds funny. But yeah, just like us, cats dream. Cats do most
    lucid dreaming in the REM (rapid eye movement) part of sleep.

    Can cats see in the dark?

    No, your cat doesn’t have some supernatural powers that can make them see in the dark.
    Well, they are not that hopeless!
    When it comes to sight, your feline is better than you. Kitties have sensitive eyes; that’s why they can see better in less amount of light. They only need the one-sixth amount of light as us to see correctly.

    Endnote

    Well, now you must be well aware of the fact that cats can be emotional support animals. Due to their behavioral features, humans find them the most suitable emotional support animals. However, you need a legitimate ESA letter from a trustable source to make a cat an emotional support animal. For this, you can apply for the Fast ESA letter. We have a team of state-licensed therapists that will evaluate your application and can certify your cat in minutes!

    About Post Author

    Blake Quinn is a huge animal lover and loves to spend time with her pets. She is not a big Chit-chatter and prefers penning down her feelings and views instead of uttering them aloud.
    Occasionally, she writes for a living too! When she is not writing, you can find her hiking on rocky mountains, sipping coffee in cozy cafes, and haunting local bookstores!

    2 Comments

    1. Canada Armold

      Do cats help with depression?

      Reply
      • Blake Quinn

        Yes, they do! Cats are the best for someone who is going through depression. Even mental health professionals suggest depression patients have them as their emotional support animal.
        It is mainly due to the reason that cats help in easing loneliness and provide a calmness to humans with depression or any other mental struggle. Their caring nature gives a wholesome feeling that your cat will always be around you no matter what will happen in life.

        Reply

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