Exercise and activity is good for your cat. It helps maintain a healthy body weight, keeps the muscles toned and the mind alert and active as well. Exercise is fun and is an opportunity to bond with our cat. There are many ways to get your cat to play, and they don’t take much time, money, or effort on your part.
Here are a few things you can do to exercise your cat.
- For Cats Only: If you have the room, you can set up an area where your cat can romp around and climb. Cat trees and scratching posts are ideal for this kind of activity. If you are handy you can build your own cat jungle gym, or you can find one at your local pet supply store or online.
- Toys: Have a nice supply of toys around for the cat to play with. You don’t have to go all out either. Some cats will enjoy those fake mice, hair ties, soft small balls, milk bottle rings, or fake spiders. Having these toys around will allow the cat to play when it wants to play.
- Wands: Wands come in all shapes and sizes. Some wands are just a stick (plastic or wood) with a poof or feathers on the end. Other wands have a poof or feathers attached to a string that is connected to the wand. Which ever type your cat prefers, it is about imitating hunting behavior. Try moving the wand along the floor in slow movements, encouraging your cat to chase, pounce, and jump.
- Chase: Try tossing one of your cats favorite toys. You might be surprised to see your cat will chase it. Or try a small pull back and let go toy car.
- Remote Control Toys: There are a wide range of remote control and battery operated toys on the market.
- Laser Pointer: Laser pointers are fun point and chase toys but follow it up with a real toy the cat can catch to avoid fixation and frustration over never being able to catch the pesky red dot.
- Two Cats: Having two cats, while often twice the furry trouble, if they get along will get plenty of exercise through their own play and chasing games.
- Treadmill: Believe it or not you can teach a cat to walk or run on a treadmill. It is best to start training when they are young, have lots of energy, and are easily enticed by toys. Always supervise your cat while on a treadmill.
- Go Outside: Like the treadmill you can train your cat to walk on a leash or a harness outside just like a dog. Make sure your cat is secure and can’t get out of their collar or harness. Like the treadmill young cats are easier to train, but in all cases it takes a lot patience and perseverance. If you do decide to take your cat outside please make sure your cat is current on all vaccinations and is on cat approved flea, tick, and heartworm medicine.
How Long Should I Exercise My Cat?
You should exercise your cat 10-30mins a day depending on your cat’s age, weight, temperament, and interests. Always consult your vet on what is best.