by Dennis Townsend, Contributing Writer
Well, after addressing happy dogs, I must say that I totally forgot about those of you who have cats. I must beg your forgiveness and with that said, let me relay some information I have gathered about the feline of the family. Believe it or not, I myself had a total of 6 cats, mostly because my ex-wife insisted on it so most of the knowledge I have about cats comes from personal experience.
Cats are very finicky, and to keep their attention, you had better bring your “A” game to the table. When my cats were kittens, they use to love chasing a ball of cellophane. I would ball it up and throw it, the kitten would chase it, and then become amazed when it slowly begin to expand. I spent hours playing that game, and the kitten never seemed to get bored. Also, I would get out a ball of yarn, roll it across the floor, and watch the fun when, as it began to unravel, it would turn into the toy that kept on giving. The real fun is when you have a toy that moves around while the kitten intensely watches it, and then it stops. That’s when the feline would turn on the “stalking mode” and try to sneak up on the toy. Then the toy would move, and the kitten would jump a mile in the air. Now that same type of toy works with adult cats also. All cats are predators, and that type of toy allows them to use the same instincts that they would use in the wild to stalk prey. I have a bird feeder in my backyard, and many a time I have seen cats sneaking up on the birds that are on the ground eating spilled seed.
Cats appreciate an interesting toy just as much as dogs do, and just about every cat loves a “kitty condo”, which often has several elevations and platforms to climb and sit on. Vertical hiding places and sanctuaries are very important to cats since this is what they look for in the wild. Try to find a condo that’s upholstered in a kneadable fabric, or carpet remnant. And if your cat still has his or her claws, you may want to invest in a good “scratching post,” if you want to save your furniture. If you’re handy with some minor tools and material, you can make these things at home. Especially since some of the condo’s that they sell in pet stores could cost you as much as $100 on up.
Now some other toys you can get is a feline version of the mouse exercise wheel which you can get at Catwheelcompany.com. Some other “homemade toys” you can make includes toilet paper rolls filled with catnip or treats, and wands made out of rulers, rubber bands, and feathers. There are countless thing you can get to entertain the feline in you home, or outside if you let your cat roam the wilds of the outside, and as I said for dogs, a playful cat is a healthy happy cat. Have fun.
Cat photo courtesy of Wikimedia Commons
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