Wednesday, February 02, 2011
Cats love interactive
play. Meaning, try joining in the
fun with string toys, laser pointers, tossing mice around, hiding the end of a
rope under a rug and tease it slowly out from under…Be creative! In my opinion, cats have the best sense
of humor of any type of animal.
Simple things can be extremely entertaining to them, like cardboard
boxes, brown paper grocery bags, and plastic lids and rings. If a cat does not play, he has probably
never learned how. He will likely
need extra assistance from you.
Therefore, it’s even more important to heed the above-mentioned
Cats can learn to play chase,
hide-and-seek, fetch, “soccer” and yoga!
I even knew a cat who answered the phone when he was home alone! They love having little tents or hiding
places to run into and pounce out of.
Playful exercise helps to combat obesity, boredom, destructive behavior,
arthritis, diabetes and “depression.”
Many cats will create their own games if they are in a safe
environment. Many will readily
play with dogs they trust, or even other animals. If you are creating all the contributing factors for fun,
and your cat still will not play, then have them examined for pain or stiffness
in the joints, sore gums or teeth, or other health issues.
Medical issues and stress are common
reasons animals will not “lighten up.”
Stress can be not having their daily needs met, inappropriate nutrition,
lack of stimulation, noise or bothersome animals, changes in the household,
anxiety or haste in their human family members, or even more subtle
things. (see “How to bond with a
pet” and “Bonding with your pet alleviates stress”)
Remember to be cautious of threads, tinsel
and other small or thin items that can be swallowed and cause obstructions when
choosing toys for cats. Even
though cats like feather toys, if they go outside at all, you could be
teaching/encouraging them to hunt birds if you use these as toys. To be a good steward for your animal
companion, use common sense. When
in doubt, ask a vet first