We all love our pets and take care of them, but how often do we think about their happiness? There have been studies that show that happy cats are healthier, and healthier cats are also happier. So how can you enrich your cat’s life? In honor of Happy Cat Month, here are some tips to make your cat happy!
- Give your cat access to low and high places:
In the wild, cats would climb trees to survey their surroundings to spot prey and predators. Staying in a high place, cats could avoid predators such as coyotes, and it also provided a safe space for them to sleep with a lesser chance of being hunted or surprised. Over time, this instinct of sitting in higher places as a means for survival has been passed down to our domestic cats. Modern cats love cat trees or shelves to feel safe at home. Some other cats prefer low hiding places, and these cats tend to be a little more shy. These cats may enjoy cat tunnels or covered cat beds, so they can remove themselves from what they perceive as threats and feel safe.
- Safe eating:
Like most prey animals, cats can feel vulnerable when they are eating. To help them feel more comfortable, move their bowl away from the wall about a body’s length away. This way, your cat can eat facing the room and not feel so exposed. If you have other cats, space their feeding bowls apart so there is ample room in between them. If you have a dog, put your cat’s food on an elevated surface so they still feel safe when eating.
- Encourage hunting or working for food:
To help enrich your cat’s life, try adding in food puzzles or other ways for them to work to get their food. Here at Blum, we carry a product called the NoBowl Feeding System, which consists of 5 toy mice that can be filled with food and hidden around your home for your cat to hunt. This way your cat can eat when they are hungry and not just because food is out. This makes for healthier and happier cats!
- Litter Box:
Cats are unique creatures who really thrive on their cleanliness. Keeping their litter box clean by scooping at least once a day will help make your cat happy. Also, choose a litter box that is appropriate for your cat’s size and put it in an area they find appealing. We recommend having an additional litter box for the number of cats you have in your home (for example, if you have 2 cats, we recommend 3 litter boxes).
Please let us know if you have any further questions about enriching your cat’s life. Your veterinarian here at Blum would be happy to offer more suggestions specifically for your cat!
Written for Blum Animal Hospital by Jackie Sheppard.