Indoor cats tend to live a sedentary life; at least, I know my cat, Loki, likes to spend most of her time sleeping. But like dogs and people, cats also need some type of physical activity in their lives, whether it’s playing with toys or jumping to a higher surface for mealtimes, in order to maintain their health. It’s not easy to get an indoor cat to exercise, as you likely know. Here are a few ideas to help your indoor cat get exercise.
Exercise with your cat using interactive toys
Loki has a plastic wand with a string attached to one end and a feather that dangles from the string. It’s her absolute favorite toy (because of the feather, of course), and she will go crazy chasing after it. When she was a kitten, we could get her to do backflips and leap several feet into the air; now, she still enjoys chasing the feather. Get your cat to run around the house and jump onto higher surfaces then back down using a feather toy.
Exercise with your cat using a laser pointer
Cats are naturally curious, and will often chase a laser light for hours, attempting to catch the moving speck. Perhaps they think it’s a bug they would like to catch. Lasers are a great way to get your indoor cat to exercise. But because they lack the reward of actually being able to get it, keep your cat’s interest by occasionally landing the light on a toy or a treat that your cat can “catch”.
Get your cat a friend to play with
Even though Loki is four years old, she still can get pretty playful with our small Maltese-Yorkie dog, Mila. Sometimes, she will chase Mila and sometimes Mila will chase her. They roll around on the floor when they need to burn excess energy. And then, tuckered out, they will curl up for a nap. If your cat does nothing but sleep all day, perhaps a kitten or even a dog will motivate your cat to move around more.
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