How much should a cat exercise?

Have you ever thought about the habits of your kitty? Cats, like pets, have a particular behavior pattern. They do not have freedom of movement and social interaction with other animals, such as stray cats that usually move in herds.

You may think that your loving pet just eats and sleeps. Cats usually don’t initiate any activity, so you have to “make” them. They also need to stay in good shape because of their health and longevity. Lately, more and more cats are marked as overweight due to lack of activity.(1)

In this article, we will answer the question of whether and how much of any listed physical activity your cat needs.

Use engaging toys

A classic toy for cats should be in the form of a mass. With an attractive and engaging toy, either static or movable, your pet will burn an energy excess or exercise its movements. If your cat is active during the day, it’ll be peaceful over the night.

All animals from the cat family are born hunters. These toys will give your beloved kitty the opportunity to prove that. You may notice your kitty hides its “prey” everywhere in the house. If you have other pets, you should know that cats don’t like sharing.

You’ll probably need a little patience at first, while you are interested in your feline for this toy. It is enough a few times a day, for ten minutes, to exercise its hunting skills.

Catnip as a training aid

Each cat has specific demands, and the choice of toys can be different. Some attract bright colors and accessories like feathers, while others are satisfied with the stuffed toy just looking like a mouse. Although they’re sensitive to sounds, they’re not too interested in noisy stuff.

If you these buy toys in better-equipped pet-stores, look for those that contain the catnip(2). This herb is something like “doping” for your cat, without any harmful effects. The oil it contains can stimulate your feline to be active, but its effect lasts for just a few minutes.

Here you can see how cat reacts to catnip toys:

Create a polygon for your cat

You may have noticed that your kit likes to lurk from corners or covered places. Lurking from hidden spots gives your feline an advantage over prey. That’s why cat tunnels are a great idea, even if you have several cats. Your pets will have where to hide, to chase each other, and to train their climbing abilities.

If you create your cats a polygon mixed with wheels and towers, they will have a whole-day workout session. This polygon could easily become a favorite spot for your kittens. They will spend a lot of time in their new playground.

Do not restrain them – with playing on these obstacles, your cats can achieve the required level of daily activities to stay in good shape. Just set it in a secured place that is not surrounded by fragile objects, maybe even outside playfield for your kittens.

Cat wheel

Apart from being a real fun for your cat, the cat wheel is a great way to prevent your house cat from becoming obese. When you give them food, your kitty doesn’t have to hunt. By training on the wheel, your cat can be relieved of stress due to insufficient activity(4) and boring life in a limited space.

If your cat exercises only on the wheel, it can lose interest quickly. It is required to include several types of training in your pet’s routine. To avoid the monotony, you can hook some toys and treats on the wheel. Set the wheel outside near the cat tree (if you have), and your kitty will enjoy all day.

If your cat doesn’t find the wheel interesting, here how to learn it to use the new toy:

Play with your cat and be creative

Cats are not interested in having your attention to such an extent as dogs, but they will definitely enjoy playing with you from time to time, even a couple of minutes per day. For this, you can often use things that are not at all intended for games with cats, like lasers.

A cat will focus on catching the red dot. It will jump over walls, furniture, and even people who find on their way. Let them approach the dot, move it on the wall, and then turn it off. After a few minutes of chasing in vain, cats will be exhausted.

Keep your feline happy and active

Cats have a fast metabolism that does not allow them to store large amounts of fatty deposits. That’s not the case with house cats since more than one-third of them are obese(5). This percent grows over the years, and many owners think that it’s normal. Fat cat is not a happy cat.

Domestic cats that spend all day indoors can become lazy and lethargic. Although they live longer than stray cats, they have to spend their life being healthy and vital. And we need to move them by engaging them in daily activities and exercises.

Sources:

  1. https://pets.webmd.com/cats/guide/healthy-weight-for-your-cat#1
  2. https://hornsbyvet.com.au/pet-library/catnip
  3. https://www.thehappycatsite.com/cat-tunnels/
  4. https://www.thesprucepets.com/stress-in-cats-552164
  5. https://vcahospitals.com/know-your-pet/obesity-in-cats

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