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Tips for Keeping Indoor Cats Happy

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Last week I wrote a bit about why cats should be kept indoors.  Indoor cats live, on average, 8+ years longer than outdoor cats. They are protected from the elements, cars, strangers with bad intentions, and disease. Keeping your cat indoors also protects your local wildlife.  I've heard cat owners argue that keeping cats indoors deprives them from acting on their natural instincts, from enjoying fresh air, and countless other arguments.  But it's not as difficult as some people think to keep an indoor cat happy!

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Cat World offers the following tips for keeping your indoor cat well exercised, happy, and entertained:

  • If it is at all possible you can give your cat the best of both worlds. Provide it with a screened in porch or outdoor cat enclosure, your cat can enjoy the great outdoors without the risks associated with free roaming cats...Enclosures come in all shapes & sizes, they can be home made or supplied by a specialised cat enclosure company.
  • Train your cat to walk on a leash. It is quite possible to do this with a little time & effort.
  • Provide your cat with a cat tree. This will enable your cat to indulge in it's love of climbing, and will double up as a place to sharpen it's claws.
  • Place perches on windowsills so your cat can enjoy the sun & watching the outside world.
  • Keep a supply of toys on hand. Indulge in your cat's natural instinct to prey & hunt by providing appropriate toys. These could include toy mice, corks from bottles, wand type toys. Cats love to hide, you can provide it with plenty of entertainment just by giving it an old box or two or a paper bag (never use a plastic bag) to play with & hide in.
  • Make some time daily to play with your cat, this will not only provide him/her with stimulation but also encourage exercise.
  • Plant some catnip or cat grass in a planter for your cat to nibble on.
  • Put a bird feeder or bath outside for your cat's entertainment.
  • You can now purchase videos especially for cats to watch...
  • Consider having two cats so they can play together.

We'd love to hear from you!  If you have indoor cats, what other tips do you have for keeping them entertained indoors?

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