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Why You Should Play With Your Cat

May 15, 2024

Kitties are a delight to keep as pets. Fluffy is not only really, really cute, she also exudes charisma and purrsonality. Our feline pals are also very playful, which is lots of fun to watch. As it turns out, playing with your feline companion is one of the most beneficial things you can do for her. In this article, a local Waterdown, ON veterinarian discusses some of the reasons why.

Playing Is Fun For Fluffy

It does not require an expert evaluation to see that Fluffy really enjoys playing. Playing is a normal behavior for many animals. In fact, almost every animal engages in some form of play. It’s always fun to see how happy cats get when they spot a catnip mouse or realize that elusive red dot has reappeared! 

Don’t underestimate how important simply having fun can be for both people and pets. 

Fluffy Needs To Unleash Her Inner Tiger

Cats have a few distinctive characteristics that make them unique among our menagerie of potential pets. For one thing, Fluffy is one of the only domesticated animals that isn’t dependent on us. Many domesticated animals would be unable to survive alone in the wild. Of course, a cat that has always lived indoors would be in grave danger left to herself. However,  cats as a whole don’t need us. They just decided they’d rather live the lives of pampered pets than labor for their meals. (We can’t really blame them, either.) 

That said, kitties are born with strong hunting instincts. Stalking, pouncing, scratching, and biting would all be crucial to helping your feline pal catch her supper in the wild. Allow your cute little companion to channel her inner serial murderer every now and then!

It’s Great for Bonding

Kitties can take some time to adjust to new owners, especially if they have come from a bad situation. Playing is an excellent approach for helping your feline friend understand that she is safe and cherished. When you grab that pointer, Fluffy will know that you are doing something for her enjoyment. This will earn you plenty of points, as well as some snuggles and purrs.

Making Friends

Have you recently taken in a third or second cat? Playing with your furry friends together can help them become friends. You want your kitties to think that nice things happen when they’re together.

Just make sure you give both pets the same amount of attention. Fluffy may become envious if she notices you holding the wand toy for Mittens but not for her!

Kitties Need Exercise Too!

Just like people, cats need exercise to stay healthy. As you may have seen, many of our feline companions are prone to becoming overweight. If Fluffy isn’t merely fluffy, she could be at danger for significant health issues, including cancer, heart disease, and diabetes. 

Obesity also creates a downward spiral, with your furry buddy becoming less active as she gains weight.

As you may have noticed, Fluffy will most likely refuse to sprint laps around the kitchen or jog up and down the stairs. Grabbing that laser pointer or wand toy is definitely the best form of encouragement when it comes to kitty workouts.

Burn Off the Zoomies

Our feline friends are notorious for being quite drowsy. Fluffy can sleep for up to 20 hours every day, though most furballs only get 14-16 hours. 

There is a reason for this: cats in the wild use a lot of energy in short spurts when hunting and then rest to recover. A simple play session will replicate that natural rhythm. 

Granted, your furry friend may still decide to sprint around the living room, but it’s best to let your furball burn off steam appropriately. Otherwise, she may wind up climbing the walls. Literally.

It Helps Scaredy Cats Gain Confidence

In the wild, our feline friends act as both predators and prey. This gives them a highly unique and distinct combination of purrsonality features. They can exhibit both boldness and timidity, sometimes simultaneously. 

Of course, cats, like people, have individual purrsonalities. Some are confident and daring, while others are unimpressed or afraid. If Fluffy belongs in the latter category, go get that feather toy! Nailing that tricky bounce/pounce maneuver can make your shy friend feel much more confident in herself. 

If you have a timid cat, consult your Waterdown, ON veterinarian for tips on making her feel safer.

It’s A Healthy Outlet For Kitty Angst

Cats, like people, can experience upset, anxiety, and frustration. Fluffy could be steaming over a variety of things. She might be annoyed that the neighbor’s cat keeps crossing her yard. Or she could be bored, lonely, or plain irritable. Taking that kitty angst out on a catnip mouse is a lot better outlet than attacking your ankles! 

Think of it as the feline equivalent of pounding a punching bag or heading to the gym after a long day at work.

Playful Cats Are Adorable

Our feline friends supply us with more than just affection and hugs; they also provide live entertainment. Kitty playtime does not have to be only about Fluffy; it may also be enjoyable for you! Kitties have a remarkable ability to raise our moods. Even seeing your furry friend run around will make you happy. While hunting may be a serious activity for cats, they frequently look quite amusing when concentrated on their ‘target.’ 

What Are Fluffy’s Favorite Toys?

All of our furryl friends have their own preferences and dislikes. Fluffy may enjoy catnip mice, Mittens may prefer chasing a laser pointer, and Pumpkin may simply want to bat a crushed-up paper ball about. Try different things and discover what your kitty companion prefers.

If you have more than one kitty, offer a variety of fun playthings. your furry buddys’ preferences may differ.

How Long Should Play Sessions Be?

That’s entirely up to you and Fluffy. Don’t worry about overexerting your cat; it’s practically impossible. When your furball becomes tired, she will stop playing and most likely move off in search of her next napping area.

How Can I Play Safely With My Cat?

The majority of accidents can be avoided by taking a few simple precautions. Don’t allow your cat to play with anything that could cut her or cause choking. This contains items such as pen caps, rubber bands, paper clips, and tacks. Plastic bags and ties are also dangerous. 

Also, just take care to play in a safe area. Choose a spot that doesn’t have any hazards, such as fireplaces. Contact your Waterdown, ON veterinarian for further information.

Should I Really Play With Fluffy Every Day?

In general, yes! Your kitty friend will not be upset if you miss a day. However, if you can, try to carve out a few minutes a day for Fluffy. This does not have to be time-consuming. Simply have a laser pointer or feather toy near your favorite relaxation location. You can do this while watching TV.

Schedule an Appointment at Your Waterdown, ON Pet Hospital

Do you have any queries or concerns regarding your cat’s health or care? Contact us immediately! As your local Waterdown, ON animal clinic, we are always delighted to assist!

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