There is no one but loves to play. Playing is also needed for animals and they like it most. Do cats need to play? The answer is yes. According to the scientist, playing is the key to a cat’s happiness. Play provides lots of exercises (physically as well as mentally) to your kitty from which she will be able to stay healthy and mentally fresh.
Some Excellent Benefits of Playing With Your Cat
Playing is a great opportunity to have a nice bond with your cat. Playing helps cats to improve their social skills. We have shared some great benefits of playing with your beloved cat and also mentioned how to play with your cat and how much playtime she needs. These benefits are given below step by step:
Play Provides Lots of Exercises:
Are you worried about your cat’s health or want to give her a happy and healthy life? Then, playing is a remarkable path for her to move which can help her to be active and physically strong. By playing, your cat can burn extra calories and pent-up energy. It also helps her to keep the heart well and lubricate her joints. Lack of exercise, your cat will suffer from obesity which causes arthritis problems and her whole life will become painful.
According to a clinical survey, 60% of cats in the U.S. suffer from obesity and this is due to two reasons: overfeeding and lack of proper exercise. So, physical exercise is very necessary for cats’ health. You can play with your beloved kitty some fun games such as hide and seek, zoom, mysteriously moving objects, cat-fishing, fetch, etc. These games give her lots of fun and proper exercise as well. As a result, she will get sound health, and lead a happy life. Remember that, choose games for your cat based on her age.
Play provides mental stimulation:
Lack of mental exercise is one of the main causes of stress and anxiety. In addition to physical exercise, cats require mental exercise to keep themselves busy and always stay mentally fit. Through playing, they will be able to express their natural hunting instincts that stimulate their mind. Puzzle toys, treasure hunts, tricks for treats, fetch, fun with boxes are the most popular brain game which gives your cat proper mental stimulation.
By playing these games, your kitty will refrain from undesirable behavior like chewing, scratching furniture, etc. You can also teach her how to make her own decision and how to keep the focus right through playing.
Playing Socializes Cats:
If you want a well-behaved cat, you have to introduce her to an important skill called socialization. A socialized cat, also known as a good cat and playing, is a great way to improve her social skills. If your cat is not socialized, she will not know how to behave with others or which behaviors are undesirable. When you do not play with her, she will find ways to entertain herself in her own way.
Then, scratching the sofa, knock items off shelves, climb curtains, biting and scratching others, these unwanted behaviors can be shown in her. To stop these behaviors, you can use some toys such as laser pointers, teaser toys and while playing these games, you can reinforce her behavior skills. Lack of socialization, your family member can be badly scratched by her also. Socialization through play will not only increase her skills but also give her a lot of pleasure and entertainment.
Play Strengthens Your Bond:
Do you want to more deepen or sweeten the bond with your cat? Playing is an excellent way to strengthen your bond. Playing allows you to spend some quality of time with your cat that makes your relationship much better. If you do not give her time, he will feel alone and this will create distance between you and her.
She will feel insecure in your home. By playing, both of you will get lots of fun and entertainment and you can explain to her how special your relationship is. Then your kitty cat realizes that you are the bringer of all fun and this will make her respect you and your bonding will be stronger day by day.
Play Reliefs Stress and Staves of Boredom:
Stress and anxiety are very harmful to cats’ health. When they stay alone or they have no work to do, then they feel bored. Stress, depression, anxiety surrounds them. For this, they do some undesirable behaviors such as aggression, urine spraying, scratching furniture, biting others, etc. But 10-15 minutes of playing every day can refresh their overall mood.
Playing is the best way to relieve stress and overcoming boredom. Since cats are very curious, they need some challenging games and entertainment every day, and it is possible only by playing. Play soothe their nerves, keep them calm and they can always be in a great mood.
Playing Solves Behavioral Problems:
As cats are solitary animals, many people think that there is no need to play with them. But you have to remember that though they are solitary, they are also very curious. So, they need a lot of fun and entertainment. Unless you play with your cat, she wants to entertain herself in her own way or play with herself in her own way. Then some behavioral issues will be shown in her like chewing wires, excessive vocalization, scratching or biting others, urine spraying, scratching furniture, etc.
Through playing, you will be able to remove these types of behavior problems and arrange some treats when playing with her. When she listens to your all tips and does something positive, give her a treat or reward and praise her always. This will make her happy and confident to learn something new. Choose games that will delight your kitty and make her interested in playing them.
Playing builds confidence:
There are some cats who can’t get along with other pets in the house or are afraid to go in front of anyone. This is usually due to a lack of confidence. Choose a room where you and your cat stay alone for a while. Play with her a minimum of 15-20 minutes and try to increase her curiosity as there is no one here to be afraid of.
Give her a treat when her curiosity grows because this will builds her confidence level and they will express their desire to play this game with other pets in the house. The more you play with her, the more it increases her confidence and the more she will be easy with others.
Play is Educational for Cats:
Play is really educational for cats. Through play, cats can learn many new things. Play improves their predator skills, behavior issues and develops coordination. Besides, playing with other pets, they can be properly socialized. If you want a humble, polite, and well-behaved cat, then play is definitely needed.
Indoor Cats Need Play:
There are some cats that can roam everywhere but some cats(urban cats) have to stay indoors all their lives. Since they have no way to go out, it becomes difficult for them to exercise every day, and staying in the same place all the time can make them annoyed. Because of being confined in four walls, they lose the instinct of many things. So, one of the ways to get your cat out of this confined life is to play.
There are some games through which your cat can exercise daily from the indoor and keeps her body fit. I recommended some games such as laser pointers, flipping fish, scavenger hunt, fetch. These activities cats usually do outdoors and by playing these games indoors, they will be able to hold their instincts.
How to play with your cat?:
When it comes to playing with your kitty, it also important to know how to play with her. There are various types of toys in which some games she can play on her own and some games both of you can play together. You can also give her some toys to explore including paper shopping bags, cardboard boxes.
As cats are predator animals, you can use motorized, remote-control, and battery-powered rodents to capture her attention and this game helps to increase her predatory instincts.
Wand-style toys with strings and feathers are best for bird replicas which give your cat a chance to stalk and this game stimulates her bird stalking instincts.
Another popular game is laser pointers which your cat thinks is a tiny insect and pays attention to hunting and chasing it. However, make sure that the light does not fall on her.
To keep your kitty mentally stimulated, puzzle toys are the best games and it also helps her how to keep her focus right.
Your cat may get bored playing the same game, so get your kitty acquainted with the new game from time to time. This will make the playing time interesting for her.
How much playtime does your cat need?:
Cats should need at least two sessions of playtime in a day for 15-20 minutes(each session). That means they should play a total of 20-40 minutes a day. But how long you play with your cat depends on her age, weight, and physical problems(arthritis, hypertension).
If your cat is young, she may play with you for a long time and be interested in playing. On the other hand, if your cat is old, it can be difficult for her to move for a long time or she may be reluctant to play. So, play with your kitty for a short time first, and then increase the playing time by observing her movements.
How long should I play with my indoor cat?
Play is necessary for indoor cats because they can not go outdoors- for that, to overcome annoyance and get regular exercise, play is needed. For indoor cats, it’s required to keep a minimum of three sessions of playing time a day and each play session should be for 10-15 minutes. However, how long you should play with your cat depends on her age, weight, and physical condition. So, it will be good if you consult with your veterinarian.
Do cats like when you play with them?
Yes, they do. Cats love to play and when it comes to play with their favorite person(you), they feel very happy. Cats like to spend time with their owner and by playing, both of you not only spend some quality of time but also get lots of fun and entertainment. When I play with my kitty, she enjoys it very much.
At what age cats stop playing?
Healthy cats usually can not stop playing even if they are old. But some cats may stop playing at the age of 7-10 years. At this age, they become much less active, less tired. If they move too much at that age, they may also have physical problems.
Is it good to play with my kitten?
Of course, it’s good. It’s important to play with your kitten. Play gives your kitty not only lots of fun but also proper exercise and mental stimulation. Through playing, both of you get a chance to spend some time together and your bonding will be stronger. So, play with her for 10-15 minutes every day and help her to get rid of the boring life.
Why is it important to play with my cat?
Play with your cat is important because:
- When you bring her into your house, then your bonding may not be so strong. To have a nice bond with your kitty, playing is a great way.
- If she is an indoor cat, it will be difficult for her to stay in the same place the whole day and she will become annoyed. To help her overcome her annoyance and get some fun and entertainment, play is obviously needed. Play also helps her to stay healthy and hold her natural instincts.
Do cats play with their kittens?
Yes, cats play with their kittens. The mother cat usually allows her kittens to climb on top of her and attack the tail. She is wrestling with them also. As the kittens get a little older and become rough in the play, the mother cat instructs them to stop playing. If they do not obey, then she swats them with her paws but no claw.
Why does my cat grab my hand and bite me?
To simulate hunting behavior, your cat grabs your hand and bites you. They usually scratch it when they catch prey. But she doesn’t want to hurt you. She does this to maintain her predatory instincts.
Does my cat know I’m playing with her?
Yes, she knows. Your cat can understand it very clearly because the visual recognition of cats is very strong. They can recognize human faces. They can also identify us by our body scent, feelings, and voice.
How do cats pick their favorite person?
Cats usually like those people who give them safe shelter and food. Besides, when your cat sees that you play with her and give her lots of entertainment, respects her space and opinion, and your relationship is getting sweeter day by day, then you will be her favorite person. That time your kitty will think that you are the bringer of all happiness and in this way, cats pick their favorite person.
How do I know if my kitten is happy?
When your kitten is happy, some symptoms will be shown:
- If she is happy, she can be very vocal.
- She expresses a relaxed posture
- She wants to play with you or other kittens
- Her ears are facing forward
- Her eyes will become very expressive and she will wink at you.