Creating a perfect home for your cat
Domestic cats that live indoors or have very limited access to the outside need continuous cognitive and emotional stimulation. Not having stimulation can cause major stress and serious health problems. It can also lead to behaviours that can cause illnesses, make life very complicated, and in extreme cases, lead to cats running away or even death.
Enhancing your cat’s environment means improving their overall well-being by giving them interesting stimulus, adding natural or artificial elements into their home that provide them with spaces to hide or climb in, and do physical exercise. Examples are scratching posts, various toys, and other types of stimuli:
- Food: cats are hunters and feed on small prey, so providing food-dispensing toys that they can use to take small bites from is very beneficial and promotes exercise. These toys can also help prevent obesity caused by a sedentary lifestyle or overeating due to boredom.
- Smell: feline synthetic facial pheromone is the most appropriate to use and is sold in various formats such as spray, diffusers, necklaces, etc. Its purpose is to provide cats with olfactory cues that ensure a safe environment and minimize stress.
- Visual: for indoor cats, it is very beneficial to give them access to a window so they can look out onto the street and see movement outside, but always making sure they can’t fall or jump out.
- High places that allow them to rest and observe their surroundings, like shelves on the walls, help them feel safe. It’s also important to provide them with things to climb on.
- Fun play items include hanging, bright, and sound-emitting elements, attached to different places such as doorknobs.
- As discussed in other articles, it’s important to point out that cats should have access to fresh and suitable food 24 hours a day, as well as clean water. Not to mention a clean and tidy litter tray situated in a quiet area, far from where they eat and sleep. They should also have free access to peaceful and sheltered areas where they can rest when needed.
- Social interaction: when there is only one cat in the house, it’s important to spend time with them every day, petting and playing with them.
Regarding toys, it’s important to imitate the natural conditions that wild cats live in as much as possible. Wild cats don’t always have prey; but need to hunt and catch them whenever they’re around. If we always leave the same toys out for our cats, they will eventually lose interest in them. That’s why we should keep an assortment at home and keep them stored away and out of reach. It’s important to swap them out frequently so they are always new.