Keeping cats indoors increases their life spans because they don’t become victims of cars, other animals, diseases or thievery. Unfortunately many cats are left alone without stimulation or a feline friend while their human companions are at work and school. Some of these cats develop behavior problems or stress illnesses while others become dangerously obese from lack of exercise. Most of these latchkey cats suffer from Bored Cat Syndrome!
It is impossible for most people to stay home and entertain their cats all day. Enrich the home environment and give cats choices to avoid Bored Cat Syndrome:
- Stabilise cat trees with lots of shelves by adding a larger base or fastening the tree to a wall or the ceiling. Position one next to a secure window and hang a bird feeder outside the window to maximize cat fun while preserving birds’ lives.
- Carpeted shelving around walls at different heights give cats lots of opportunity for exercise and contemplation of their home comforts. Many access points to the shelves give cats choices and prevent them from being cornered without an escape route.
- Wide window perches allow cats to scope out the neighborhood from the safety of their homes.
- Treat balls or shapes packed with healthy treats or dry food provide hours of chasing and playing fun. Make a puzzle out of a cardboard box with two to three holes in each side, just big enough for a paw to reach in for biscuits, but not big enough for a head to be caught in.
- Play hide and seek with treats or dry food. Scatter them behind sofas, up cat trees or on shelves while your cat is otherwise engaged.
- Many cats enjoy exercise wheels like these kitty treadmills
- Videos made for cats keep them occupied and stimulated when they are left alone. Video Catnip and The Cat Sitter feature the sights and sounds of birds, fish, mice and other animals. Some cats are fascinated by these videos; others give a passing glance and continue with their own agendas.
- Televisions talk shows or home and garden shows keep some cats fascinated
- Some cats love to play in running water like the Drinkwell Pet, available from Hall Vet Surgery.
- Many cats enjoy the company of other cats. Consider both cats' personalities before bringing a newcomer into the house. Some cats do not adjust to another cat in the household. Proper introductions can take months even when two cats are well suited.