So, you’re the proud new owner of a kitten or cat – congratulations! Now that the COVID-19 pandemic is over, however, you likely can’t stay at home with your kitten or cat all day, as many of us are returning to our places of work in lieu of working from home. Even if you do work at home, you can’t spend all day entertaining your cat when you have work to do. And everyone knows that a bored cat becomes a curious cat, which can quickly become a dangerous, destructive cat! Here, we’ll talk about ways that you can keep your kitten or cat entertained while you’re at work.
Cat toys come in all shapes and sizes. Some require that you play with your cat with the toy, but others are designed for your cat’s independent use. These are the ones you want to focus on enticing your cat to play with while you are at work. Balls and other toys that your cat can safely bat around are perfect, as are hanging strings they can bat at. They even have electronic toys that move by themselves, that cats can play with on their own. Toys are a great way to keep your cat exercised during the day, too, when you can’t be with them.
Another great toy for cats to play with independently are puzzle toys. They come in various designs and difficulties, and may use treats as a reward or encouragement. An example is the Nina Ottosson by Petstages Buggin’ Out Puzzle & Play, designed to keep your cat busy and exercised. If you have a few different puzzle toys set out for your cat, you could provide them with hours of entertainment!
Plain old empty boxes don’t cost a thing, and can keep your cat happily entertained for long periods of time. If you’ve ever received a delivery from Amazon or another store, and left the empty box lying around your home, your cat likely found that box quickly and made it their own. Some cats like to just lie or loaf in boxes, while others enjoy it when a toy is placed in the box for them to bat around furiously. Once your cat has tired of the box, you can recycle it and give your cat the next new box that comes through your door!
Although it may be designed for your cat’s comfort, cat furniture can also keep your cat entertained, especially if it involves climbing. A cat tree can keep your cat busy for hours. Keeping a few smaller scratching posts around your house is a good idea too, to give your cat various things to do during the day. After you’ve had a cat tree or other piece of cat furniture for a while and your cat seems to be getting bored with it, you can refresh it by adding new toys to the furniture.
These are a lot like the puzzle toys listed above, but go a bit further and cost a bit more. These interactive treat dispensers are connected to your Wi-Fi, and you can control them with your phone from anywhere. You can even talk to your cat through some of them, and release treats to your cat at various times during the day. It can help to calm a socially anxious cat if they hear your voice when you aren’t there, and can also give you a way to check in on your cat while you are at work. One example of these high-tech treat dispensers is the Petcube Bites 2 Lite Interactive WiFi Pet Monitoring Camera with Phone App and Treat Dispenser. If you just want to be able to talk to your cat and exercise them without giving them treats, you might want to try something like the VStarcam Cat Camera with Laser, in which you can control a laser beam that your cat plays with while you talk to them over Wi-Fi.
Some cats love catnip, and some do not. Typically, it works on cats, not kittens, but not all cats. Some cats will enjoy catnip for hours on end. It can be placed inside cat toys, on their climbing trees, and in boxes for your cat’s enjoyment. You can rest assured that catnip is safe for cats, but also know that some cats who are exposed to it frequently might develop a tolerance, where it stops affecting them.
Let Your Kitty See Outside
If you keep your blinds, window shades, or curtains open while you are at work, your cat can enjoy watching the world go by outside. Some cats love watching birds, animals and people who are outside their window. Other cats might become anxious and stressed by this, however. You know your cat and likely know what they like, so use your own discretion.
These are all creative ways to keep your cat or kitten entertained while you are at work. When you get home, make sure to spend extra time with your cat, giving them stimulation and keeping them from being bored. Remember, they will have more fun playing with you than playing by themselves!