Cats are lucky, they have nine lives. But in order to keep make sure they have nine long lives, they need to be given the proper care. Like humans, cats need to eat right, watch their figures, and exercise regularly. It’s up to you to keep your cat active and fit, and here are some ways to do just that!
Keep Your Cat Healthy and Fit
Not only should your cat, or cats, be eating a healthy diet, they also need exercise. This is something you have to pay particularly close attention to if you have an indoor cat. But indoors or out, you’ll want to do what you can to help keep your furry friend fit and healthy so you can enjoy his companionship for as long as possible.
Feline Fitness Is Good For You AND Your Cat!
Unlike the little white furball in the picture, cats don’t really need to hit the weights to stay fit. But they do need equipment. And some of the best pieces of feline fitness equipment are toys.
Whether you use some of today’s interactive toys, or a simple feather on a string, toys can provide not only the physical activity your cat needs, but also the mental stimulation. Playing with toys provides entertainment, and can help them burn off any excess energy or any stress that they might be feeling.
Plus, the time you spend playing with your cat will deepen the bond between you.
Feline Fitness Toys
When choosing toys for your cat, keep in mind that each cat has it’s own personality, and therefore each cat will have different preferences when it comes to the kind of toys they like best.
And remember, cats love to hunt! The hunt is what keeps a cat physically fit and mentally stimulated, so you want to make sure you choose the right toys, ones that will simulate the hunt.
Laser pointers are so simple, really, but can provide hours of fun. It can be quite comical to watch your cat trying to catch the red dot, and it gives them an excellent workout. You can almost get a cat to climb the walls trying to get that little red dot. And if you have small children, they may get some exercise time in, too, competing with the cat to be the first to catch the light from the laser pointer.
Cats, like humans, can be motivated by food. You can allow them to use their natural hunting instincts by putting some treats in a treat puzzle toy and letting them figure out how to get the treat out. Don’t worry, they aren’t too difficult to use. As they work to get the treat out, it satisfies their hunting instinct, while providing a good workout. Keeps your cat active and fed at the same time. It’s a win-win!
Small Batting Toys
Cats love to take a small cat toy and bat it around with their paws or toss it in the air to catch. Sometimes it takes nothing more than for you to toss the toy into the air or across the floor and your cat will delight in pouncing on the toy and flipping it around. You’ll be entertained, too, watching him stalk and pounce. Have you ever seen a cat when he catches his prey? He will play with it for a while before going in for the “kill”, so to speak. To him, a toy is no different, he will want to play with his “prey”.
There are two different kinds of chase toys – the home-made version and the store-bought kind. Cats love to chase things, so a simple feather on the end of a stick dragged around on the floor will get your cat going. String, yarn (see the safety warning below!) shoe laces – anything that can be dragged on the floor will delight your cat and keep them busy for a long time, as long as you don’t wear out!
There are also many different kinds of toys that you can purchase where you yourself don’t actually have to do anything but flip a switch. These battery-operated toys are especially good for times when you can’t stop to play, but your cat needs a good workout!
A cat probably won’t fetch a ball the way a dog would – although there are a few that will – but yes, cats do like to play with balls. Even better than a plain old ball is one that makes a sound, like the kind that have a bell inside. Again, this is something a cat will bat around in his paws or roll around on the floor and pounce on. All of this is similar to the behavior a cat would exhibit in the wild, and will provide your cat with the exercise he needs, while satisfying his hunting instincts at the same time.
Just remember to watch your cat carefully when playing with him. A ball of yarn or a piece of string can be great fun, but can easily turn into a choking hazard. A feather toy can cause a cat to get tangled up and possibly strangled. So please be careful with the toys you get, and when you do use them be sure to supervise closely. Safety should always your number one priority.
You Wore Me Out!
Any of these toys are great for keeping your cat happy, healthy, and fit. And remember, if you’re interacting with your cat and wearing him out, he’s less likely to have the energy to do destructive things to your house. This will make him much more enjoyable to have around, for a long time to come!