5 Ways to Make a Cat Exercise

Cat obesity is a serious health problem. Besides a well-balanced diet, exercise is a great way to fight it. However, making a cat do that might not be as easy as it is with a dog.

It’s quite easy for domestic cats to get obese. They don’t have as many opportunities for exercise as outdoor cats. Therefore, it's important to encourage your pets in exercising and playing games. Especially if we can’t resist and give them some small treats from time to time. If their weight is getting out of control, it can lead to future health problems such as joint pains, breathing problems, or diabetes. Some cats (such as those that are neutered) are more prone to obesity, while others tend to be coach potatoes, and this is a really easy way to put on weight. The first step in this case should be to changing the cat’s diet. However, we will focus on how to make a cat exercise in this article. Let’s face it, it’s not that easy to do that.

In the wilderness, cats are night creatures and not all of them get used to a different schedule when living inside. So, the best time for them to play is early morning or evening. It's especially a good idea to let cats use more of their energy before bedtime, if you’re not a heavy sleeper and cat rustling wakes you up. When you think about what kind of activity will entertain your furry friends, keep in mind that they are small beasts and hunting is natural for them. Anything with prey is likely to attract them.


Encourage Your Cat to Climb and Scratch

Cats like climbing. Make a good cat tree for your furry friend. Of course, the taller the better, but a small scraper will also do its job. It's good to tap into the natural instinct of cats to mark the territory by scratching, which perfectly stretches the cat's muscles and, as a bonus, blunts and and shortens its claws. If it is possible to climb up the poles to higher levels, the muscles will quickly replace the cat’s bigger belly. You can support it by putting your cat’s favourite toy or a treat on higher levels. If your cat isn’t interested in the scratcher, don’t give up it and try other materials. Some prefer a rough sisal; others prefer a soft cardboard scratcher.

Offer More Toys and Change Them after a While

A toy can easily become hackneyed. So, always offer your cat only a few of them and change them frequently. This way, your furry friend will still be amazed by them. Fishing poles or interactive toys that appeal to the hunting instinct of almost every cat are great. Ball tracks are also useful for good exercise. However, I recommend building it as a long track. If you make it a circuit, your furry friend will soon understand it can only sit in the middle of the circuit and wait until the ball shows up in front of it. So, this wild game can easily turn into fun for lazybones. Some cats even like fetching, so you can try it with your cat. And we can’t forget about a laser which makes probably every little beast move and you will all have fun with it.

Let It Explore the World behind the Door

If you have some suitable space around, such as a garden, a courtyard in a peaceful block of apartment buildings or you can enjoy the countryside right behind your house, let your indoor cat “taste” walking outside. Some cats have an explorer’s spirit and even when they are not allowed to go outside freely, they enjoy short outdoor adventures in a harness or on a leash. Of course, your companion has to get used to the harness first. And don’t forget about fleas and ticks when on a walk and protect your cat against them.

Activate Their Skills and Musculoskeletal System with Treat Toys

Of course, you can’t provide your cat with too many treats – and if you are going to offer it some, they should be of high quality and with low number of calories in a perfect case. But there’s no reason why they shouldn’t serve as exercise motivators. There are toys on the market that make the cat use its skills so the treats would come out. It's a great exercise for both physical and emotional well-being of your cat. Hollow balls with holes or different puzzles belong to those. “Food hunting” is also a great way to get your cat moving. Divide its food into a few bowls and hide goodies all over your apartment. It makes it thoroughly go through all the rooms.

Use Catnip or Other “Cat Drugs”

Not all cats react to catnip, but fortunately we still have valerian or silver vine. Cats usually have strong reactions to all of these plants or at least to some of them (you can find more here). For some cats, it’s enough to spread some on the floor and they start rolling in it and run crazily around. Others will enjoy playing with toys filled with these plants better. Also, balls solely made of pressed catnip are made. However, they should only play with them when you’re around and for a limited period of time.

Keeping your cat in shape may not always be easy and it requires a lot of patience and endurance. However, the health benefits it brings are worth the effort. What games make your cat move? Share your tips with us!

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