Keep your cat busy, entertained, and happy in your home with these easy ways to make cats happy.
As a cat owner, it is your job to make the home you share with your cat a happy and healthy place. That means more than just providing food and health care. Cats need stimulation to maintain their mental health and curb undesirable behaviors. Educational and interactive toys are a great way to keep cats engaged, but you don’t need fancy equipment to enrich their lives.
Check out these 15 easy ways to entertain your cat. They will surely appreciate your efforts!
1. build a fort for your cat
When making the bed, fluff up the sheets and blankets and gently lower them over your cat. Both you and your cat will enjoy this chore.
2. share (harmlessly!) . Kitchen herbs.
Basil, dill, and rosemary are safe for cats to nibble on. You can cook with these herbs if your cat is willing to eat them! Animal behaviorist Julie Poslands, ACAAB, owner of The Cat School, suggests feeding cats catnip or cat grass.
3. rearrange furniture.
Strategic placement of furniture can help cats jump. Imagine the amazing athleticism required to jump from the floor to the back of an armchair, to a bookcase, and to the top of a lounge!
Says Poslands, “Rearranging furniture is also a great way to see how cats react to changes in their environment.” Are they excited and eager to explore, or are they skeptical of environmental changes? Knowing this information will help you create an enrichment environment that fits your cat’s personality.
4. Hide and Seek
Another great enrichment game for cats is to lay open magazines or newspapers on the floor and let the cat’s toys slip in and out under the magazines or newspapers and back again, recreating the scene of small prey moving in and out of the grassy area. Cats will be fascinated.
Posluns also suggests another game. Shake the treat bag after you hide yourself, and let the cat rely on the sound to find you. When it finds you, reward it with a treat. Once the cat is good at hide-and-seek, you can call its name to help it find you. The most advanced version of this game is to use the cat’s excellent sense of smell to find you,” she adds.
5. leave a box behind.
Shopping online? Leave the delivery box for a few days before recycling it, as kittens are drawn to small places where they can hide and sleep. Leave the top open or close it and cut a large hole in the side of the box. (Instagram was made for cats that take pictures in boxes.)
6. Take a break from nature
Bring in something from outside, such as branches, rocks, fresh leaves, etc. (Only bring in plants that are non-toxic and harmless to your pet!) . . Cats can learn about the outside world by smelling fresh soil.
7. create a scratch adventure course
Buy or make vertical and horizontal scratching posts for your cat (unless you know your cat prefers one over the other). For ease of scratching, make sure the vertical ones are at least 3 feet tall and the horizontal ones are at least 1 foot wide.
8. play with snot pads
Here’s a simple DIY tip to enrich your cat’s life. Fold a towel, hide treats in its folds, and place them in a box or large paper bag for your cat to explore; Posluns also suggests using a grass box to stimulate your cat’s natural foraging instincts, hiding treats between blades of grass, or placing snuff pads in your cat’s carrier to “forage” for The authors also suggest using a grass box to stimulate the cat’s natural foraging instincts.
9. Bird Watching
Installing an outdoor bird feeder on a window sill and building a cat TV will ensure a reliable bird-watching experience! With a suitable window sill, it can provide hours of perfect observation time for cats.
Fill a large bowl with water and place a rubber ducky or small teasing toy. Place the bowl on a towel or tray and watch the cat splash around. Shake the toy from side to side to keep the cat occupied.
11. Clicker training
Clicker training is a great activity for bonding. Many cats are very good at this activity and you may be surprised at the number of tricks your cat learns.
“Teaching your cat new tricks like high-fiving is a great way to give them the mental boost they need.” Posluns says.” Cats love to learn, and little treats are the perfect reward for their efforts. There are many skills and techniques that can be taught to cats. Nurture your cat’s behavior and brag to friends and family about your cat’s intelligence.
12. Chase the food.
If you feed your cat dry food, you can make mealtimes more stimulating by throwing food for your cat to chase rather than using a bowl. (Although some cats don’t want to work for their food!) . .
Many cats love to chase food, and this is a great easy and fun way to get them to chase you. If your goal is to get your cat to expend more energy, try throwing food up or down the stairs.
13. Walking your cat
Posluns recommends first training your cat to accept a leash and harness. Then choose a safe place to practice, such as a garden or yard.
Walking your cat on a leash is one of the best ways to enrich your cat’s life. Once your cat accepts the leash, you can enjoy the outdoors with him. If walking on a leash isn’t right for your cat, consider backpack training.
14. Try Target Stick Training
Have you heard of target stick training? Attach a small ball to the end of a dowel rod (according to Posluns, dowel rods are also available for purchase). Train your cat to touch the ball with his nose, and it will easily get him from point A to point B. She also suggests using target sticks to guide your cat through the furniture agility course.
15. Gradually Introduce Enrichment Activities for Cats
Just as some cats need to get used to their unique body language and the meanings of their purrs and meows, some cats need time to adjust to new things, Posluns says.
If a cat’s initial reaction to an enrichment activity is negative, we may assume it’s not a good fit for their personality. In fact, it may require a slower introduction process,” she suggests. For example, many people have a hard time with leash training and conclude that cats will never take to the leash, but I believe that any cat can take to the leash with a gradual training program.
So be patient with new activities and help your cat make progress one step at a time. Our goal is to use an approach where when you give your cat a new enrichment opportunity, you know it’s a fun activity,” says Poslans.
by Tracey L. Kelley