Photo: Manja Vitolic via Unsplash
Everyone knows how important it is to keep a cat entertained. What many people don't realize, however, is that cats can get bored just as easily as dogs do – and the dangers of boredom in a cat are actually greater than those presented by a dog's boredom. A cat that has been kept entertained throughout its life will be much less likely to engage in destructive behavior that may be harmful both to the household and itself.
1. Give Them Cat Toys
The easiest way to keep a cat entertained is by giving them toys at all times. This doesn't mean just buying any old toy from the store, however, as it's important to find toys that your cat will actually enjoy playing with.
On the contrary, you can also give them cat toys—like literal toys that look like cats. If you want to make them jealous (if that’s even in their vocabulary), Gage Beasley’s Lifelike Cat Soft Stuffed Plush Toy Decor is a banging toy to get. It looks eerily similar to the real thing but you’re cutting costs by not feeding them unlike your hungry ol’ cat there.
Lifelike Cat Soft Stuffed Plush Decor Toy
2. Give Them an Enclosed Space to Play in
Many bored cats will go outside of the house to play. This is dangerous, as they may get hit by cars or be unable to find their way home again if they are out too long. To avoid this problem, it is best to give your cat a small space inside the house that they can play in. An enclosed space, such as a spare closet or under the bed, can be easily cleaned up if your cat does happen to take care of the business inside of it.
3. Provide Them with Scratching Posts
A cat who is bored will usually start scratching things (to sharpen their claws) and knocking things over (to see the reaction). Providing them with scratching posts, or even better, a scratch pad, will encourage them to stop these behaviors.
4. Make Sure They Have Plenty of Toys Hidden Around the House
It's always best to provide your cat with toys so they can play whenever they want. But this doesn't mean you should always be the one to provide them with entertainment. It's important that they have a few new toys hidden around the house at all times, so they can play on their own when you aren't home or can't provide enough of your attention for them.
5. Give Them Lots of Attention
Just as humans need time by themselves, cats also do. But they can still get lonely when you aren't around, and this is why it's so important to give your cat lots of attention when you are home. Make sure to play with them often and talk to them in a soothing voice so they know that you care about them and give them the love and affection that every cat deserves.
6. Provide Them With Plenty of Scratch Pads
Cats are playful, but they also need to scratch something during the day. If you don't want them scratching your furniture or carpeting, consider getting them a scratch pad that will allow them to get their sharp nails into something suitable without destroying other things around the house.
7. Play With Them Every Day
Cats love to play, but they also need breaks. The best way to keep your cat entertained is by playing with them for at least 15 minutes every day (you don't need to spend hours playing with them). Once you feel like you've played long enough, though, leave the room and allow your cat to play by themselves for a while.
8. Keep Their Beds Clean
A cat that is always sleeping in the same place will grow to be very uncomfortable and unhappy, so it's important to keep their bed clean at all times. Not only should you regularly change out the blankets or t-shirts they sleep on, but you should also consider cleaning out the entire area with a special pet-friendly carpet shampoo.
9. Never Punish or Yell at Them
Cats can sense when you're angry, and will become afraid of you if you ever punish them or yell at them when they misbehave. It's best to ignore any bad behavior and reward the good behavior, rather than punishing the bad behavior.
10. Play Several Different Types of Games With Them
Some cats enjoy playing with a mouse that they can catch, while others prefer a laser pointer to chase around the room. It's important to use several different types of games when playing with your cat so that they don't get bored and start misbehaving.
11. Keep Their Nails Trimmed and Their Teeth Cleaned
Cats need to keep their claws sharp and their teeth clean, so it's important that you regularly clean the inside of their teeth and trim their nails. This is also a good way to avoid any scratches or bites when playing with your cat, as they will be less inclined to scratch you if their claws aren't sharpened.