In collaboration with Cat Educator, Intersand®’s cat experts would like to offer a few tips and tricks for new “parents” of cats, cat lovers and anyone who’s considering a feline addition to the family.
Yes, cats also have these famous top 5! Let us go a bit further by telling you not only what your cat loves, but why it is essential to his well being, both physical and mental.
The cat needs to stay active for his physical and mental health, just like anyone else. In the wild, hunting is a matter of survival. In your house, hunting equivalent is the game and here, it is rather a question of well-being. The first thing to remember is that the cat is a sprinter and not a marathoner. So, no need to play hours with him. 2 to 3 sessions of 10 to 15 minutes of intense play are enough if you allow him to catch the toy from time to time. You are surprised that such a short period do the job? Think about it: the cat can hunt for hours, but he spends most of his time in ambush and then, poof, he deploys incredible energy in a short time to catch his prey. This is the pattern that must be reproduced in your play sessions.
Some of you know it perfectly, the cat likes to eat. As we have just said, the cat spends part of its time in nature hunting. Studies show that it is an average of 30 minutes to 3 hours it takes him to find and hunt preys. So why should we just serve him his food in a bowl without having him to provide any effort? This is why interactive bowls are for. Fed with these bowls, the cat must work to get his meals and it becomes a stimulating game that challenges him as his preys do in nature. Plus, by offering them food in an interactive bowl, you encourage them to spend their energy in the right place rather than climbing up your curtains or jumping on your ankles in the middle of the hallway.
After a good meal, it’s time to get down to business. The thing that the cat likes the most in the world and for which it seems to have been conceived, sleeping! All you have to do for your cat is to offer him different places: preferably in height and quiet allowing him not to have to worry about what is happening in his environment. Avoid waking the sleeping cat unnecessarily, especially if the cat is dreaming. Indeed, the cat dreams like us. This is what he does when he wriggles his paws. The cat rarely sleeps so deeply because it represents a potential danger for him or a missed opportunity to hear prey goes by. So when he does, he feels safe and needs it.
The cat prefers to sleep in height because it feels safer. In fact, he prefers to do everything in height, for the same reasons as us. In history, man has always built towers to better look after his environment, to see the dangers or to feel safer by being out of reach of potential enemies. On the other hand, the cat has the advantage of being “built” to climb easily and quickly, so the height becomes very convenient for him.
That’s why cat trees are not luxury items, but essential for them. The perfect place to put a cat tree is near a window or in a corner of the house that allows the cat to have an overview of a large area of the house and especially, the most common areas.
We could not ignore this activity, so popular with cats, but that infuriates so many people. No worry, it is easy to indulge him this pleasure while preventing him from destroying your furniture. No need to declaw it, a practice that two provinces in Canada already prohibited and multiple veterinary clinics have decided to stop in Quebec. The reason is simple and is due to the fact that today there are several alternatives.
The first is simply to give him access to a scratching post. If in the past this strategy did not work, it’s probably because you did not meet all the conditions for it to adopt its scratching post. First, it must be high enough that the cat can stretch all the way, about the height of a bedside table, and stable enough so that, even if it puts all his weight, the post will not fall. Finally, the main element is the location. Place the scratching post where the cat wants it. If it’s the corner of the couch, well put it there. Unfortunately, you will not decide for your cat where he prefers to have his scratching post. But if you bend to this preference, he might save your furniture.
Now you know what to do for your cat to be perfectly happy in your house.