Break out the Cat Toys: Here are Some of the Fantastic Health Benefits of Playing with Your Cats!
Do fancy cat condos, gadgets, and DIY cat food hacks litter your social newsfeeds, making claims about improving your cat’s lifestyle and health? They certainly define ours (though, we’re not complaining!). These products may be great and helpful to entertaining your cats, especially while you’re away at work. However, it’s important to remember that the easiest, most affordable way to keeping your cat healthy is by simply playing with them! In fact, there are many benefits that come from playing with your cat, some of which even surprised us!
Of course, many people raising senior or less energetic cats may retort that getting their cats to play is easier said than done. Without question, the struggle to muster energy from slothful kitties is worthy of sympathy and understanding. However, it’s crucial to never give up on getting the hearts and minds of all cats, young and old, jogging.
How breaking out cat toys can improve your cat’s health:
1. Promotes exercise:
Since cats spend about 67% of their lives sleeping, many humans to assign the false stereotype of them being couch potatoes. This is unfortunate! Cats who lead sedentary lifestyles increase their risk of diabetes, heart disease, and obesity down the road.
By encouraging cats to leap for wand toys or bunny-kick crinkle kickers, cat parents minimize these health risks and give their kitties a great workout!
2. Eliminates boredom:
Cats are naturally curious and crave, at the very least, some degree of adventure in their environment. Without any stimuli to satisfy that craving, depression and lethargy can overwhelm a cat’s mood and behavior.
A great way to combat boredom in cats is by switching up the cat toys people use to play with them. Subscribing to a monthly cat subscription box, like KitNipBox, is a great solution for this. Subscription boxes for cats provide cat families with a variety of new toys every month. This way, cats (and their humans) always have something fun to look forward to.
3. Relieves stress and anxiety:
Stress and anxiety are just as bad for cats as they are for humans! Cats can experience these emotions when dealing with a variety of unfamiliar situations, like being introduced to a new fur sibling or moving from one home to another. Playtime can distract cats from this type of discomfort and help them feel more confident in their shifting environment.
4. Promotes bonding:
As mentioned earlier, some cats can feel uneasy when meeting a new feline friend. Sometimes, the tension can lead to hissing and even scratching! To alleviate this situation, try swapping around cat toys for both parties to play with. This not only helps them overcome whatever suspicions they had about the “new guys,” but it also begins to forge a bond between the cats prior to cohabitating. By getting them used to one another’s smell via the toys, the cats will feel more familiar with each other.
5. Build confidence:
Some cats, especially new foster cats or kitties that were just adopted, can be timid. This characteristic can, sadly, hold them back from socializing with their parents and (if they have them) fur siblings. To counteract this, it’s recommended that cat parents play with their shy kitty in a quiet room for about fifteen minutes every day. Of course, cats shouldn’t be forced to play with their toys. Rather, the cat will eventually let their genuine inner curiosity shine instead. Over time, the instinct to play will come out and the cat’s sense of “yes, I can totally get that fishy toy!” will take over.
Please note: before playing with their cats, it’s crucial that cat parents make sure that the cat toys or goodies used are perfectly safe for them to engage with!