Cat safety and play tips
What are the benefits for keeping your cat indoors?
- You won’t have to worry about your cat getting lost or going missing.
- They are unlikely to catch diseases from other cats.
- Your cat won’t injure or kill wildlife or destroy native habitats.
- They won’t get injured or killed in territorial cat fights.
- Your cat won’t leap into unknown backyards and get attacked by dogs.
- They won’t be trapped or hurt by neighbours, who do not want them in their backyards.
- Your cat won’t get run over by cars or other vehicles.
- You will have fewer emergency visits to the veterinary clinic and no release fees from the pound.
- Your cat will spend more time at home with you.
How to keep your cat happy indoors
- Spend quality time playing and cuddling, with your cat each day.
- Ensure your cat has food and water, a comfortable bed to sleep, and an adequate litter tray that is changed every couple of days.
- Provide interactive toys and change them regularly including a tall scratching and climbing post, to stop them from damaging the furniture.
- Bring some plants into the house like cat nip, cat grass or cat mint.
How to keep your cat safe indoors
- Place anything that might be harmful out of reach, such as objects that may be swallowed; dangling strings or cords that may strangle; and electrical wires that may be chewed.
- Remove bean bags, as kittens may use these as litter trays.
- Put away valuables that your cat may break; and good clothes, shoes, handbags and briefcases that your cat may tear or scratch.
- Avoid using strong chemicals when cleaning, as cats lick their paws.
- Put the toilet seat down, as your cat could drown in the bowl.
If you are taking your cat outdoors, provide an enclosure with shade or use a harness and lead to ensure the safety of native wildlife. If you are travelling, ensure you use a carry cage to keep your cat safe and secure.
Activities you and your cat can enjoy together
Play sessions with your cat two or three times a day will be beneficial to your cat’s mental health and physical wellbeing. Regular exercise may also reduce nuisance behaviour such as neurotic chewing, compulsive grooming, over eating, and in some cases aggression. It will also help to strengthen the bond between you and your cat.
Cats love little places where they think nobody can see them, so use a paper bag without handles, cut out a few holes in it or hide their favourite toy inside. Your cat will love to play with it, hide in it and pounce on it!
Cats love to discover and hunt things around the house. Try burying their favourite toy in between the couch cushions or under a pillow. Once your cat has found the toy, hide it in a different place to keep it interesting.
Cats love to follow things and swat them back and forth. You can buy cat toys or just tie a chopstick to the end of a ball of yarn and dangle it in front of your cat.
Cats love to bat things around on the floor, so use an empty toilet paper roll, place a solid ball inside and tape up both ends. This will make it wobble when your cat bats it around. Make sure the roll has no toilet paper on it or your cat will create a huge mess!
Cats love to chase things and jump around the room. Try bouncing ping pong balls or shining a flashlight across the floor and up the walls. It’s a great challenge for them and gives them a bit of a workout.
Cats love to smell and chew things, so try making you own chew toy out of an a old sock stuffed with different textures (like toilet paper, cotton balls and newspaper) and a bit of a catnip. Just watch your cat go crazy!