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Feline Enrichment

Updated: Dec 5, 2022

Hello hoomans. It’s me, Ivy. I’m the Chief Pawsitivity Officer over at the Anderson location and I’m here to talk about my favorite subject—walks! I LOVE to walk on my leash or go for long rides in my stroller. Everyone I meet wants to give me a pat. My Mom says the walks are a form of enrichment, since I am mostly an indoor cat. I would be happy to go outside on my own, but my mom won’t let me, BECAUSE of the ONE time I jumped in our neighbor’s car and the other time I jumped through our neighbor’s open window. I’m not sure why my mom got so excited about it. I just wanted to do something new.

I like being an indoor cat, because I’m safer and my mom told me indoor cats tend to live longer. But sometimes I get REALLY bored. Then I zoom around the house and knock things over. Sometimes I may scratch things or open cupboards.

My Mom is not amused. She tries to entertain me. We have a play spot in the living room. As soon as she sits down on the spot, I come running, because I know the fun is about to begin! My Mom used a clicker to teach me to high five and shake. I can also spin around in a circle and sit! I love learning with the clicker!

My Mom tells me that some indoor cats are so bored they become depressed and a little fluffy around the middle. She thinks I’ll be happier if I must work for my food. She puts my food in puzzle toys, which I love. She says if I get too bored, she will start moving my food dish around the house, so I will have to hunt for it. Apparently, some cats ONLY get fed from hidden treat toys! If cats are hunting for their food, they are less likely to bother their humans to refill their dish. If the hidden food is too hard to find, please help your kitty find their dish. You can use a laser light or wand toy to point the way. My Mom also knows that sometimes when I ask for food I’m just bored. She always tries distracting me with toys and only feeds me if I immediately start asking for food when playtime is over.

I love to climb, and the more shelves or towers the better! Mom even puts a perch on the windowsill so I can bask in the sun.

Sometimes I just want a new toy. Mom gathers all my toys up and rotates them every week, so I’m not tired of playing with them. When the toys come back after a few months they seem new and fun again! I also love looking out the windows, and bird feeders are a great way to keep me entertained.

Of course, sometimes all you need is a box. New boxes with a few holes cut into them are THE best. I hide inside the box and Mom uses feather toys to fish for me. I love playing this with paper grocery bags as well.

I guess I’m lucky. My Mom helps keep me on my toes, so I don’t gain weight or develop behavior problems, and I keep her running too! I know she LOVES waking up early to give me a drink of water or open a window for me so I can watch the birds. Guess we’re BOTH lucky!

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