Kitty Playtime

May 24, 2017   John   Pet Care Tips

Even though they average 16 hours of sleep a day and often may be more interested in their bed or a warm sunbeam, your cat needs exercise.  Exercise is actually an important piece to your cat's overall health and relationship with you. Exercise obviously can keep your kitty's weight down and help her work off extra energy but is also crucial for her mental well-being.

Here are 5 tips to help your kitty stay healthy, active, and for both of you to have a little fun together.

  1. 1.     10 to 15 minutes once or twice a day. Carve out a spot in your schedule for you and kitty to have some fun every day but don't push it.  As you probably are aware, cats are most active at dawn and dusk.  Because these are natural active times, they are perfect to times for play.  Since these are usually feeding times as well, play session before her meals also key in on her natural desire to hunt and be rewarded with food.
  2. 2.    Find out what your cat likes.  Try a variety at first.  Feathers and string are always fun, but watch her while she plays to find out what kinds of objects she likes best.  The plaything she likes most can help you figure out what kind to buy in the future.  When she seems bored, cycle the old toys out for something new and do the same again to keep things feeling fresh.  Oh, and if you have an old box ready for the recycle bin, let your cat have it for a day.  They will love it!
  3. 3.    Get your cat a piñata! Cats are especially satisfied when they can get their teeth and claws solidly into their playthings and love to bat things that hang overhead. Piñatas are super fun for kids and cats as well!  A piñata doesn't have to be extravagant.  DIY, use a plastic container, like an old yogurt or sour cream cup with a lid and cut a small hole in the bottom of it. Food inside will offer even more motivation so put a treat or two inside and hang it up with a string where your cat can reach it. If she hits it the right way, the treats will fall out and provide entertainment for her and hopefully you too!
  4. 4.    Tech toys:  A laser pointer is not just for a galaxy far, far away, but a super easy way to provide exercise as your cat chases the beam. Laser pointers are also mental exercise as it provides a simulated hunt for your cat.  Similar to feathers on a string, chasing and tracking the quick movement of the laser pointer helps your cat exercise mentally as well as physically.  There are also tablet apps for cats to paw moving objects on the screen.  Don't feel you need to buy your cat an iPad!
  5. 5.    Go for a walk. I don't recommend this for older cat owners, but just like dogs, cats can learn to walk on a leash. This is best if you can get her comfortable with this type of activity while she's young. This type of exercise is also best suited to cats that aren't shy. You will also need to get your cat a harness.  Leash tied to a collar can put pressure on your kitty's sensitive throat.  A harness displaces the pressure throughout the chest and shoulders if your kitty pulls on the leash. If you live in Florida or other places where fleas are common, a flea treatment for your cat should also be in place.  Last but not least, if you are thinking of walking with your cat, consider the other pets in your neighborhood.  If your neighbors have noisy or scary dogs, walking your cat is probably not for you.





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