Helping your feline friend get into shape may seem a little daunting. Particularly since your cat’s morning routine likely doesn’t include yoga or joining you on a jog. So how do you help your cat be more active? Exercise in cats typically mimics activities they would perform in the wild such as hunting, jumping, walking, and searching for food. Cats perform these activities in short bursts rather than long bouts of endurance. So creating an environment where they can pounce and leap in 5-10 minute intervals is ideal.
Each cat is unique, and they all have preferred play styles. Chasing interactive toys such as feathers or laser pointers is very popular, but cats can grow tired of playing these same games repeatedly. Dispensing food rewards when catching toys can entice your cat to keep up their hunting behaviors. For example, hiding healthy treats throughout the house can encourage them to express their natural inclination to forage. Some cats respond well to puzzles that release small food rewards after being batted and chased around. While other cats are open to activities such as fetch and even walking on a leash. It takes patience and gentle persistence to ease into these more complicated tasks.
One key to success when adding fun, new exercises to your cat’s routine is to take it slowly. Start with just a few minutes of the new exercise twice a day, and gradually work up to longer intervals or more frequent bursts of activity over time. Helping your kitty express their inner wildcat constructively will not only help you bond with them on a whole new level but will help to increase their muscle tone and boost their metabolism.
As with any changes in diet or exercise routine, we recommend you check with your cat’s veterinarian to make sure they’re healthy enough to participate in increased activity.
Still have questions?
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