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Staying indoors is the best solution for your cat or kitten's health, but how can you be sure it's getting all the stimulation and exercise it needs? Here are a few suggestions from Adopt-a-Pet.com on how to make sure that your indoor cat is safe, secure and happy.
Keeping your kitten or cats indoor all the time is unquestionably the safest choice you can make for its well-being. It prevents your cat from being hit by cars, injuries from other animals, parasites, life-threatening illnesses and an almost endless list of other hazards.
Keeping your indoor pet happy is just as important as keeping it safe! A pet's happiness plays an integral part in its health, just like with people. There are many wonderful ways you can enrich its environment and its live. Here are a few of our favorite fun ideas for helping keep your feline friend happy while living safely inside your home.
Adopt a Kitty Friend
Most cats are so much happier with a cat friend! We're not just saying that because we're a pet adoption Website either—ask anyone that's owned two or more cats. Even if you think your cat doesn't like other cats, you might try fostering a few different (slightly smaller and opposite sex) cats. Often, it's just a matter of a slow introduction and finding the right personality match. Find a cat or kitten to adopt near your zip code.
Cats need to run, jump and chase every day. Wild cats have birds, bugs and other small animals to chase around, but indoor kitties need you (or a kitty friend) to provide that kind of mental and physical exercise by playing with them every day. You may need to try lots of different toys until you find one that gets your cat going.
Variety Is the Spice of Life
Wild cats wouldn't be chasing an identical bird day after day. You can make inexpensive cat toys by attaching almost anything to the end of a fishing line. Try crumpled up paper balls, tin foil, plastic wrap, knots of yarn—of course, never leave these homemade toys out with them unsupervised. My cats are huge fans of the feather on a string and laser toys.
Climbing and Hideouts
Even in a tiny apartment you can get super creative with arranging your furniture like couches and bookshelves to create create climbing steps and high-up "hideouts" for your cat! They do not have to be carpet cat trees; check out some great stylish ideas on the blog moderncat. Also don't forget window perches, like a bookshelf or chair back in front of a window—cats love to look out even if they can't go out.
You may ask, "Why not just build or purchase an outdoor cat enclosure?" That's a great idea too! If you have a balcony, patio or yard, there are endless ways you can create a cat-proof enclosure for your cat to enjoy being outdoors safely. But before you invest a lot of time or money in one, you may want to try a less expensive outdoor cat tunnel first. If you follow the other tips above, you may find your cat is perfectly happy being an indoor-only cat.
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Published on June 29, 2010