It’s easy to adore cats. They’re extremely clean, independent and adorably curious when you least expect it. They go at their own pace and can take care of themselves.
Independence is often punctuated with stubbornness, and as any cat parent knows, coaxing a cat to play and be active can be tedious. They tend to play with what they want, when they want.
Just like us, cats are less likely to play on their own as they grow tired with age, a time when exercise becomes increasingly important. Here are a few ways you can engage your feline pal more easily.
Mature cats need play time
Maturity has some wonderful advantages, but health concerns that weren’t a problem earlier tend to surface as we all age.
Muscles get weaker, joints may start to ache and your cat may slow down, making healthy activities harder to maintain. But that’s exactly what humans and cats need: Ongoing exercise combined with a healthy diet are the best remedies to mitigate aches and pains from growing older.
As cats age, their health can begin to decline. Appropriate exercise, coupled with diets specifically formulated to benefit mature cats, can help keep your cat’s heart, muscles and joints healthy and strong throughout life.
The better your feline feels, the more she’ll be more open to play time.
Play ball (or laser)
Trying to get a cat to play is like trying to look cool in front of a 13-year-old. The more you try, the more resistance you face. While mature cats can be a little more stubborn than older dogs when it comes to play time, there are two simple ways to get them to “play ball.”
1. All about the Toy…
The right toy can be all it takes to turn a couch cat into a playful one. If your cat has grown tired of the same old toys, grab some new ones at the pet store.
Paper bags, cardboard boxes, catnip and laser pointers are still feline-friendly classics. Whichever toy activates them is the right one.
Pro tip: Avoid making all the toys available at one time. Your cat will likely end up getting bored with all of them. Start with one toy at a time.
2. And timing
Engage your mature cat in play while she’s naturally more active. If your feline is more active early in the morning, set your alarm a few minutes earlier and make some time to play with her. It’ll probably put a smile on your faceand that’s always a good way to start the day.
A little time goes a long way
At most stages of their lives cats require relatively little maintenance, and a little play can go a long way, especially later in their lives.
Just a few minutes a day can have a healthy impact on your cat —and you. It will give you more time to bond with your lifelong pal and who couldn’t benefit from more bonding?