Wouldn’t it be amazing if we could take our pets everywhere we go? Or if they could roam about outside freely with no fear? Alas, in Covid-stricken times both are very remote possibilities. Even when a pandemic is not taking over our lives there are bound to be times when a cat must be kept indoors for various reasons including bad weather, heavy traffic times, sickness etc.
Like any other animal, cats enjoy being outdoors but research has shown that it’s generally safer and healthier if they spend most of their time indoors. It prevents them from being attacked by other animals, catching contagious diseases, and accidents you wouldn’t want to envisage.
So, how do you keep them stimulated and happy at home?
Here are five different ways you can do that.
Provide plenty of toys
Cats don’t have to go outside to search for the things that they like. All you need to do is give them some cat toys and they will play with them for hours. For some added stimulation, sprinkle catnip to give them a brief “high” but make sure to limit its use.
Another low-maintenance alternative is to create food-based puzzles. Figuring out how to get to the treats will keep your kitty engaged and happy, physically and mentally, for a long time.
Create a play area
A designated ‘cat zone’ goes a long way in keeping your cat well-exercised and engaged. Create their own private space in which they can hang out. Just like us, cats too would love to have their little corner where they can play or retire to. Set up a small space for them, preferably by a window. Cats love looking at life outside and can amuse themselves for a long time just sitting at the window sill.
Set up the play area with cardboard boxes, scratching posts, treats, puzzle toys, etc. to keep your cat busy.
If you have the space, create a play area for your cat with the help of floating shelves, perches, and walkways. Make it fun and engaging to keep your cat engaged.
Set aside one-on-one time
Like any other pet, cats love it when you spend quality time with them. Even if it’s just a few minutes we encourage you not to skip setting aside some one-on-one time with your kitty. Have a lengthy grooming session or toss a ball of yarn around and they will appreciate you a lot more. Many cats are strongly visual and love to observe the world from a window. Indulge in the activity with them, and talk to them. Cats are good listeners too.
Cats love it when you brush their fur or simply have a meal with them. Pull up a seat for your cat too when you sit down for lunch or dinner. They like feeling that they’re part of your social activities, which makes them included.
A cat-proofed outdoor space
Do you have a garden? Or a small balcony? Share it with your cat. Cats do like the outdoors and it’s ok to let them be outside as far as you make it safe for them. Cat-proof your garden with higher-than-usual walls or fencing to prevent your cat from jumping over. Don’t let your cat out without an ID tag. If they manage to clamber across everything you’ve put up and get lost, you should still be able to get your cat back.
Even if it’s a small garden or a balcony, cats will keep themselves busy. You can arrange for extra entertainment with some outdoor toys, some climbing gear, and a little resting place.
Take as many precautions as possible when letting your cat outside and near plants. Avoid using pesticides or other chemicals for rodents or bugs as your cat can accidentally ingest some of it.
We hope these tips help you in having a happy, healthy indoor kitty! Do you have some tips to share? Do comment below!