Being a cat owner, you understand that cats aren’t as playful as dogs. This doesn’t mean that they don’t need exercise and playtime. Obesity in cats is at a record high in 2018 where an estimated 60% of cats are obese in the United States according to the association for pet obesity prevention. Its time to get off the couch and play with your cat to avoid your fuzzy buddy falling prey to disease.
Here are 5 fun and interactive games to play with your cat.
Hide and Seek
Most cats are curious animals and will try to find their owners that are playing hide and seek. While it may sound silly if you have children this is a great way to keep them busy on a rainy day.
Remember to hide in a location that they will eventually find you. Hiding behind a curtain, door, under a bed or other various easy to find locations will keep your cat entertained and the extra exercise will help keep your cat fit.
While playing hide and seek don’t try to scare your cat. This will lead your cat to have negative associations with the game and will prevent them from playing in the future.
Some cats respond to their owners calls, bells, chimes, etc. These vocal cues can be used to assist your cat to find your location easily.
Cats are known to hunt so avoiding turning this into a hunting type of game. Your cat shouldn’t be nipping at your hands and feet or aggressively trying to find you.
Cat Nip Toys
We all know that catnip drives cats crazy so putting it inside a toy just makes sense. Catnip sensitivity is found in an estimated 50% of cats so it’s a coin toss if your cat reacts to it or not.
When cats smell catnip it is thought to mimic feline pheromones, which triggers cats to go crazy according to Dr. Jennifer Coates article on Does Catnip Really Get Your Cat High?
However, when cats eat catnip it has a completely different effect. When eaten cats tend to mellow out which is the exact opposite effect.
Catnip isn’t just enjoyed by cats you can enjoy it to! It can be made into a tea which has calming properties similar to chamomile according to the human society.
There are a variety of cat nip toys like catnip bubbles, catnip feather toys, and catnip teaser toys. The effects of catnip will only last around 10 minutes.
If you cat isn’t interested in playing with toys adding catnip can help increase their activity levels. Catnip should be used in moderation and you shouldn’t be using catnip daily. Once every two to three weeks is plenty anything more than that is excessive this is done to prevent habituation.
If you have a kitten who isn’t reacting to catnip keep in mind that they will only start reacting to catnip when they are several months old.
Laser and Light Cat Toys
While we advise against cat laser toys, we can’t tell you what to purchase. We do recommend using mirrors, flashlights, even the reflection in your watch.
The best part about these toys is that you don’t have to move off your couch. Since cats love almost everything that is shiny, they will go crazy over it.
The reason we advise against laser toys isn’t because of the laser itself. It is because your cat will be frustrated when they can’t catch the light.
This isn’t to say that pointing a laser in your cat’s eyes is a good thing. Pointing a laser in someone’s eyes is a danger. It can cause burns and damage to the retina which can cause partial blindness, loss of vision, higher risk of eye problems in the future.
Having tangible toys simulate their hunter and prey instincts. When they constantly fail to catch their prey, they will be less inclined to continue their efforts. Which is why it is important that if you are using a laser toy play with a tangible toy afterward.
We felt the need to bring a tangible cat toy that you can use while sitting down and what better way than with a fishing rod cat toy.
When you have a fishing rod you need to bring bait which is why the toy at the top is filled with catnip. The catnip filled bait can also easily be interchanged for extended play.
Boxes/Paper Bags/DIY Cat Toys
When you order a cat toy online you get two toys the box, and what’s in it. You can take advantage of how easily cats are entertained by poking holes in the box and using the toy to peak its head in and out of the holes.
Paper bags are always a lot of fun for cats. Placing a ball inside of a paper bag will cause it to roll in interesting ways which will keep your cat entertained at least for a little while.
Getting creative and making DIY cat toys can be just as fun as playing with them. If you have the time and are looking to be creative, you can turn that cardboard box into several cool toys for your cat. Here are 6 different homemade cat toys you can make with a cardboard box.