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Enrichment For Cats

Enrichment For Cats

Prevent Boredom And Spend More Time Together

Cats are the most popular household pet in the United States. Who can resist those fuzzy little purr machines? Cats make excellent companions. They are playful and often like to snuggle or spend time relaxing with their people. They can also be independent, which means they like to take time for themselves on occasion, which gives their people time to themselves also.

It can be easy to become complacent with letting that downtime for our cats grow longer and longer. When they are ready to play, but we’re not getting the hint, things can get a little hairy. Has your cat ever knocked belongings off the counter or spent some time chewing on blinds, scratching furniture, or generally being naughty? These are the signs of a bored kitty!

So what can we do to alleviate boredom? Provide daily enrichment!

1. Training Sessions – If you have a cat who is food-motivated, try teaching her some new behaviors!

  • Prepare for training with small treats, such as Primal Nibs to use as rewards.
  • Start small: begin with something super easy, such as ‘sit’ or ‘come.’
  • Work your way up to fun and exciting tricks!

Example Training Session

  • Show your cat you have treats, and give him one so he knows what he is working for.
  • Wait patiently until he naturally sits, or use the treat to lure him into a sit.
  • Say “good” or “yes” when your cat’s bottom hits the ground in the sit.
  • Provide a treat to reinforce the behavior.
  • Repeat until he sits quickly. Good job! He learned the sit command!

 2. Provide interactive toys or puzzles.

Cats are very smart, and are hunters by nature. Providing puzzles or food traps is mentally stimulating and encourages natural behaviors. Try different options to provide variety in stimulation. There are a plethora of interactive toys that move, shake, and even bounce. Food puzzles and traps are fun to play with and rewarding when your cat gets all the goodies out. These toys can often be found at your local natural pet food store. It’s also possible to make your own puzzle toys.

One such toy can be a simple empty egg carton. Place small treats and catnip in each cup, close the lid, and present to your cat. Make sure the lid has holes in the top. Try hiding Primal Nibs, Freeze-Dried Liver Munchies, or freeze-dried food inside any of these toys.

3. Give them something to chew on!

Cats enjoy chewing on a variety of items. This is why they sometimes chew on your blinds or furniture at home. Your little carnivore has a tongue covered in backward-facing barbs which are designed to strip meat from bone! Try providing a Primal Chicken Neck or a Small Beef Marrow Bone. Chicken necks and bones promote healthy teeth and gums, while providing mental stimulation. Some cats like these items to be warmed before consumption. Feel free to run warm water over the bone or neck (while still in packaging) to warm before serving.

4. Make some frozen treats just for your cat!

Cats can have frozen treats, too! Cat-sicles are easy to make and are a fun, longer-lasting treat for your kiddo. All you need to make some yummy frozen treats is an ice cube tray and your cat’s favorite foods or snacks.

Consider the following combinations for cat-sicles:

Remember to keep your cat-sicles covered in the freezer!

When it comes to boredom, one thing is clear: cats will always let you know about it! Take some time to enjoy their company while providing new and exciting enrichment. You and your fuzzy feline friend will both benefit from these daily interactions.