Playing is an essential part of your cat’s life because it allows them to satisfy their natural instincts such as pursuing, exploring, climbing, attacking and hunting. But it is actually much more than that – it’s also a sign that your cat feels good, healthy, comfortable and that it has a balanced lifestyle – all of which contribute to their overall well-being. Today, we will present you some easy and useful tips for playing with your cat.
Why is it important to play with your cat?
- By playing, the cat develops their predatory skills;
- They get to exercise, which prevents them from becoming overweight
- While playing, the cat will only feel positive energy and generally become happier
- If your cat is more withdrawn and shy, they will gain more confidence and respect for you as both owner and playtime partner
- Your cat will not feel so bored and depressed anymore and the both of you can have lots of fun together.
Let the cat set the rhythm of the play
You can not force a cat to play with you but you can try different methods to see what generates interest for them. Even if you do not do anything out of the ordinary, your creative attempts will amuse them. A good tip would be to turn the lights off and play when it’s dusk or close to night time because it’s well known that cats like to hunt in the dark. Match the intensity of the playtime to the interest of the cat. After a while, you’ll figure out what their style of play is, as your cat will give you a look that says “I’m ready to play.” Do not make the game too easy, otherwise your cat will get bored quick and might decide to stop playing.
Invent fun games to hold their attention
If you want to learn more about these useful tips for playing with your cat, follow the next tip. Use one of your cat’s favorite toys to turn it into a fun cat wand, preferably one that has catnip so it makes your cat even happier. If you do not have a wand or stick, tie one end of their toys with a piece of string and use that to turn it into a magical cat wand. If the cat shows a special interest in the toy and watches it with eyes wide open, raise it slowly in the air and increase the speed. The cat will then jump to catch it, using more physical effort.
Hide and seek game
Some cats have fun running after their owners or hiding in some secret area of the room so that they can ‘attack’ you when you least suspect it. If you notice that your cat loves to bite your feet when walking around the house, you can replace this behavior with a small game of hide and seek that your cat will adore.
Once your cat jumps out and runs toward you, pretend to run and let them hide, then look for your cat. Once you find your cat in their hiding spot, just run and hide yourself. Your cat will definitely start looking for you.
Hide toys when you have finished playing
It is generally recommended to play with your cat for at least 10 or 15 minutes. This is one of the most important useful tips for playing with your cat and ensuring they have a great time. However, when you’re done playing and you see that your cat doesn’t have any interest anymore, put the toys aside. If your cat has access to them at all times, they will eventually get tired of them as the toys will just turn into simple everyday objects.
Wear protective gloves
If your cat loves to bite and has a generally more aggressive style of playing, we highly recommend using protective gloves throughout the duration of the game. To show cats that biting is not part of the game, all you have to do is to suddenly withdraw your hand without pulling and also stop moving it in any way. Your cat will quickly lose interest because it can not hurt something that is dead (static), right? As time goes by, she will remember that once she bites you, the game stops. Every time you behave the way you want it, it is important to encourage this good behavior with praise or small rewards in the form of treats.