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Exercise Special – Indoor Cats
Looking for some ideas to keep your indoor cat entertained and full of beans? We explore some creative ways to keep your indoor cat trim, healthy and amused. PLUS: expert comment from Cat Palace Chatswood Cat Veterinary Specialist, Dr Kim Kendall.
For many indoor cats, the notion of a lazy day can be rather extreme. For indoor owners, it’s important to consider enriching your felines environment to ensure they are kept occupied and more importantly kept energetic and trim. Some cats will naturally find something to do, be it scratching your furniture or jumping around high shelves, while others will need a little encouragement to get moving.
Many times, kittens will thrive in a small indoor environment. The trick? Two kittens and a cat scratcher! Having two kittens will ensure that your cat is always entertained and kept fit! Their endless play and chasing sessions will give you a huge amount of relief knowing your cat is happy.
If your indoor cat is not being entertained with other felines friends there are some way to increase their movement;
- Dedicated Play Sessions – Start slowly particularly with cats who have not enjoyed a good run in a while. Invest in some interactive cat toys like feathers and mice on string and play with your cat. Start with a 5-minute play sessions and increase to 20-30mins, daily. If you have stairs encourage your cat to run up and down or to interact with the cat on the scratching post. Just remember to remove your interactive toys when you are finished so that your cat keeps interested during play time.
- Cat Nip – yes this delightfully smelling herb is a safe way to get many indoor dwellers to start moving and get a little silly.
- Cat Post – it’s really important that all indoor cats have access to a scratching post or cat tree. This doesn’t have to be a huge investment, in fact anyone who can install a flat-pack can make their own basic scratcher. There are oodles of designs online that are come in the simplest form or an elaborate masterpiece.
- Get Creative – Do you have a specially designed cat enclosure for outdoors? Or perches on windows so your cat can watch the world around them? Consider also utilising bird feeders and baths so your cat can safely interact with the bird life beyond their confinement.
- New Toys – invest in some good new toys like balls and mice. Cats love the crinkly kind and ones with cat nip. The trick is to change them up daily to keep your cat interested. Consider a lazar pointer or investing in those wonderful new light up toy games.
- Feeding time – Another good tip is to keep your litter tray, feeding and water bowls all in separate locations so your cat has to travel to get to each. If you live on a split level consider keeping the food bowl upstairs.
- Box it up – cats love boxes. Get creative with some boxes and let them go for it!
Expert comment from Cat Palace Chatswood Cat Veterinary Specialist, Dr Kim Kendall
“Two kittens a cat scratcher and indoor for life. If you are considering getting a second cat do it before 18months or after eight years. Have no more than four cats.
“Other ideas include; – TWO playtime (minimum 20mins) EVERY DAY. Da Bird or Da Mouse – let them destroy it. If using a laser toy – MUST finish on something they can pounce on and either kill or eat (otherwise frustration and obsession builds up).”