How To Keep An Indoor Cat Happy
There is a lot of controversy around whether or not cats should be indoor or outdoor cats. Some people think it is not fair to keep cats inside all day everyday, and other thinks it is not safe to let your cat outside to prevent them from running away.
Personally I am somewhere in the middle. My cats go outside, on leashes, supervised. But that’s not the right fit for everyone.
However, you don’t have to let your cats outside to ensure they have an interesting and happy life. There are a few things that you can do that will keep your cat happy even when they are indoors. But how do you keep an indoor cat happy?
Let’s talk about the five things you can do to make sure your cats have a happy life indoors!
Give Them Room To Climb
If you look at squirrels, and even some outdoor cats, it’s a known fact that cats love to climb. Since they can’t have the chance to do it outside, bring the climbing indoors. With countless options such as tall cat trees, wrapped with sisal rope and studded with platforms for perching will give your cat the opportunity to look down on the rest of the world.
Some people will also get those “cat shelves” that can allow your cat to climb the walls in a safe way and look up even higher to the world.
I cannot tell you how happy these make cats. In fact, as I am typing this I had a cat sprint past me, and leap (LEAP) onto their perch. They climbed all the way to the top and started looking out the window.
Which actually leads me into the next tips.
Provide Rooms And Options with Views
Just because your cat doesn’t go outside doesn’t mean they don’t want to watch what’s going on.
Whatever the size of the house, your indoor cat will know every one of its sights and sounds within just a few days.
Provide a little visual stimulation by putting a bird feeder outside a window fitted with a cat-sized ledge that allows for comfortable viewing.
Personally, I like to put our cat perches by the windows in our rooms so they can look out the window AND be up high like they really are in nature.
Their little chirps when looking at birds shows me how happy they really are.
The one thing to think about this is to watch how your cat reacts to different “visual stimulations”. If you have a lot of stray cats or loud noises, your cat may become scared or even frustrated with what they see.
If you do have stray cats, I like to try and limit them to certain areas of the yard, and limit visitation to those parts of those house. (I do this by moving the cat perch because they all want to look out the windows on the perch, but each cat is different).
If they don’t seem interested in the outside, or if you don’t have a lot of stimulation for them to be entertained by, you can also try the TV. Youtube has “Cat TV” options that I love to turn on for my cats when we are going to be gone for a few hours.
Get The Right Toys
One of the best ways to keep your cat happy is to play with them. And since we can’t always play with them 24/7, I love to recommend cat toys that cats can play with by themselves or WITH their human.
Every indoor cat should have toys for batting around, toys for chasing, toys to hide inside and toys for interactive play. For mine, those are three: the Cat Dancer, The catnip Banana, and ….earplugs. (It’s weird I know!)
If your cat is a catnip junkie, indulge him frequently. Rub fresh catnip onto cat trees or scratching posts, or stuff it into toys. It’s perfectly safe for your cat to enjoy the buzz.
Some of the most enjoyable toys for both people and cats are the interactive ones. I always recommend the cat dancer as a great toy for cats and humans to play with together.
But the best thing you can do it try to see what toys your cat enjoys playing with, and load up on them. If you told me I would be buying Lime Green Earplugs for my cats to play with, I would have said you are crazy.
Yet here we are.
Go Green, Get Plants
One thing that I noticed is that when we would take our cats outside, the one thing they loved to do was chew the grass.
Let’s face it, nearly all cats love nibbling on plants. So why not bring some of the plants indoors?
If this is something you are interested in, make sure you only bring in plants and grasses that are plant friendly. You can get a book with a list of plants that should not be in a pet-friendly house.
You can also visit the Animal Poison Control Center for information on dangerous plants.
After you get the unsafe ones out of the way, protect your decorative houseplants by hanging them up or otherwise placing them out of reach. Any that are sitting on your counter should be too heavy for cats to be able to accidentally knock off.
But they then get the greenery they love to chew on, and you have greenery in your house! This one is a win/win in my eyes.
This one is the most important one when thinking about how to keep an indoor cat happy. I’m just saving the best for last.
To keep your cats happy, regardless of where they are, you have to love them. Form a special bond with them and care for them.
The best thing you can do for you cats in to spend time with them. Some cats want to play, some love to be groomed and petted, and some want to cuddle up with you on the couch!
Spend time with your cat how they prefer and then you will have a cat that you love and who loves you back.
Keeping a cat inside is one of the best ways to ensure a long and healthy life.
Just because they don’t get to use their wild side outdoors doesn’t mean that your cat is missing something from their lives. If you add some intrigue into their world, they will be just as happy, and safer, than if they were outside anyways.
It doesn’t take much in the way of time or effort, so get going. Your cat will thank you!
And that’s how to keep an indoor cat happy!
You can also ready my top cat products to buy on Amazon!