Indoor cats’ life a confined life. There are several reasons for keeping a cat confined to the indoors as opposed to free access to a larger territory. These reasons include:
- Preventing road accidents
- Due to concerns about local incidents involving humans and cats
- To protect from FIV and other diseases
- To prevent theft and/or loss
- To stop fighting with other cats
- As a way of keeping neighbours happy
Indoor cats do miss out on many benefits that come with outdoor life. However, that doesn’t mean an indoor cat needs to have a sad and boring life. It is possible to avoid problems such as stress, obesity and boredom. Here are 5 ways to improve the living environment and well being for any indoor cat.
- Don’t leave your cat alone for hours during the day. Indoor cats don’t get to interact with other wildlife or objects such as leaves, trees, insects and so on. This can lead to extreme boredom. Having companionship, someone to interact with, play with, hear and watch can help to alleviate stress building boredom. Consider hiring a local cat sitter if it is impossible for you to avoid leaving your cat for several hours at a time.
- Add items that will promote exercise and play. Scratching posts, activity centres, cat shelves and other toys will encourage movement and can be used to physically and mentally stimulate your cat.
- Expand the space your cat has access to. Ensure your cat can enter and exit multiple rooms in the home (if not all). Go one step further and give your cat safe and controlled access to the garden or outdoor space by introducing a catio, cat fencing or any other style of cat containment system. Fresh air, a larger territory and nature will do wonders to improve the quality of life for your cat.
- Make more time for interaction. Each family member should dedicate time to spend with the cat. Cats love to interact with their family. It could be spending time playing, sitting together, having a sleep, watching cooking or any other daily activity that takes place in most homes. Your cat should be included in activities and not ignored.
- Make regular changes to the indoor space but leave constant safe spots and toilet areas. Add new toys and furniture, change rooms around and introduce new ways for your cat to explore and play in the home.
How do you keep your indoor cat happy and healthy? Share your indoor cat photos and tips with us over on our Facebook page.