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10 Games to Play with Your Cat

10 Games to Play with Your Cat 3

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The Importance of Play for Cats

Believe us, a cat is not a dog. No matter how much you throw a ball in your garden or apartment, it certainly won’t go fetch it and bring it back to you like a good dog. However, it is possible to play with your cat and have fun, which is as important for their well-being as their diet, for example. Without play, your cat can quickly become stressed, anxious, or depressed. It is best to establish a specific daily schedule for your furry ball of fur, creating a routine and a guideline.

If you don’t know how to play with your cat or simply need ideas, we will show you some tricks in this article: 10 Games to Play with Your Cat.

Cats and Laser: Danger

The most recommended thing is to offer toys that guarantee the safety of the cat, avoiding those with small pieces that can easily come off and get stuck in their throat, as well as those that can cause frustration in the animal. Which toys produce frustration in cats? Toys that cannot be caught or solved. The most characteristic example is the laser pointer. Although we may find it very amusing to see our little cat chase a laser that will never turn on, this same game can cause frustration, stress, anxiety, and disorders that can have serious health consequences.

We will opt for toys that allow us to entertain the cat, either by letting them play alone or with us, in order to strengthen the bond with this furry ball and improve communication.

DIY Cat Toys

Some cats are more independent than others and prefer to play alone or do not want to spend their free time playing only with their guardian. For these cats, it is ideal to mix the two types of play and spend hours playing with them and hours leaving them alone. For the first option, it is important to know that cats are animals that tend to get bored easily. This means that after several weeks, or even days, the cat will stop playing with the toy that they enjoyed so much in the beginning because it is no longer new and does not arouse curiosity.

Remember what we said at the beginning of the previous section: cats are naturally curious and need to constantly discover new smells, textures, etc. To help you, we advise you to have a box with several toys and offer them gradually. This way, in a short time, the toy that bored them will become interesting again.

A Cardboard Box: Multiple Possibilities!

Something as simple as an empty cardboard box can be the best game to entertain your cat at home because it offers them countless possibilities! You can leave it within their reach so that they can decide when to enter and play, or you can introduce other elements inside, such as toys, treats, etc. Not only will you grab their attention to start the game, but you will also encourage them to associate it with positive reinforcements.

If you want to make the game even more fun, take three or four boxes and create a maze with them, connecting them and creating different openings for the cat to enter and exit. Don’t forget to place treats or toys to guide and reward them! This game is especially useful if you intend to be away for a few hours and your cat has to stay alone; it will entertain them for a while.

10 Games to Play with Your Cat – DIY Cat Toys

Is a Cat Tree Useful or Not?

It’s no secret that cats love to scratch. And what better way to do it than on a scratching post that also offers them fun? You can offer them the traditional scratching post with just one part for scratching, or you can give them a cat tree with multiple levels, even a small house, feathers to simulate prey, and other toys that keep the cat alert. If you want to learn more, read our article on Types of Cat Scratching Posts.

A Paper Bag with a Little Surprise

Yes, it may seem unlikely and not necessarily very stimulating for a cat when described like that. However, know that cats love to hide and slip into any hole they find. More interesting now, isn’t it? A paper bag can actually be a very fun game for the animal if you know how to motivate them. We suggest putting several treats and their favorite toys inside a paper bag and hiding it as a surprise in a cardboard box. Voilà!

Kong: A Perfect Toy for Your Cat

The Kong is a food-dispensing toy that is perfect for keeping your cat entertained and playing alone. It is also an effective method for reducing separation anxiety. Simply fill it with kibble or treats and give it to them as it is. The cat will have fun trying to get the food out. There is no need to buy Kong brand dispensers; there are other cheaper brands that also make treat dispensers. You can even make your own dispenser, as explained in the video at the bottom of this article.

Find the Reward: A Game with Cardboard Tubes

Do you usually throw away the cardboard tubes from toilet paper? Then stop doing it! They are perfect for fun, easy, and inexpensive cat games. One of them can be done with toilet paper tubes and the lid of a cardboard box. Here’s how:

  1. Take the lid of a medium-small cardboard box, about 20 cm long.
  2. Cut the tubes in half, as we will introduce treats inside at the end of the game.
  3. Fill the inside of the lid with the tubes placed vertically and glue them to the base with strong glue.
  4. Let it dry.
  5. Place some treats inside a few tubes and hang it all on a wall, at the cat’s height, so they can smell the food and play.

To better understand the steps or get more game ideas, feel free to watch the video on making DIY cat toys from PlanèteAnimal.

Playing Hide and Seek with Your Cat and Other Games to Share

A cat can play alone, but it’s even better for them when we participate in the game. By playing with our cat, we manage to entertain them while strengthening our bond, increasing mutual trust, and keeping them away from problems like stress, boredom, loneliness, or anxiety.

Here are the most fun, easiest, and cheapest games to play with your cat at home:

Fishing Line Game

We said that cats are hunters by nature, and therefore, we must meet this need if we want to prevent them from pursuing their prey on their own. A good way to do this is by using fishing rods called “cat fishing rods.” They are available in different colors and shapes on the market, with feathers, toy mice, and other animals that act as prey and capture the attention of the cat. Choose the one your little companion prefers, set a specific time for play every day, and have a good time with them by moving the rod and making them chase it. Remember that not winning can generate frustration in cats, so let them capture the prey from time to time to avoid spoiling the game.

10 Games to Play with Your Cat

Wool Ball Game

Fetching and bringing back the ball is not just a game for dogs; cats also enjoy it, although a dog will naturally be more obedient. To do this exercise, follow these steps:

  1. Find the ball that your cat prefers and throw it for them to fetch.
  2. At the same time, say “fetch” so they associate the act of fetching with the command, and reward them when they reach it.
  3. Once this step is done, you can teach them to bring the toy back. To do this, when they have the ball in their mouth, call your cat to come to you, gently take the toy away, and give them a reward so they understand that when they give it to you, they receive a prize.
  4. Gradually introduce the word “drop” when they release the toy and practice this until they do it on their own.

Playing Hide and Seek with Your Cat: A Classic

Remember how much fun you had playing hide and seek when you were a child? You can do it again with your cat! To start this game and entertain your cat, simply hide, call your pet, and let them find you. At that moment, run, hide again, and repeat the ritual. And if it’s your cat who hides, say “Where is (your cat’s name)” before starting to search for them, so the animal can associate those words with the beginning of the game.

Another game you can play with your cat is “tag.” You probably don’t need to teach your cat how to play, as they will be the ones asking you to do it. Have you ever seen your cat running around like crazy in front of you? Then run too and chase them. When you catch up to them, they will probably run away again so you can chase them once more.

With these two games, not only will your cat have fun, but it will also prevent them from becoming overweight.

Playing with Old Socks

As we said, the simplest and most economical games are the best, especially for your cat. Tie knots with your worn-out socks and start playing with them. In addition to the game, they can also use them to scratch and won’t damage your new socks!

10 Games to Play with Your Cat

Playing Cups and Balls with Your Cat

Yes, this game can also be played with animals. It’s as easy as a game between people: take three plastic or cardboard cups, or nuts, and place a reward under one of them. Flip them over and line them up. Move the cups and make your cat guess, by smell, which cup contains the reward. Give it a try!

Enjoy playing with your furry friend and have a great time together!

mahatma gandhi portrait

- Mahatma Gandhi

“The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated.”