What do cats love most

Cat’s are very special lovable creatures. Some more than others can have the strangest of habits, likes or dislikes. Apart from things that cat’s hate, here are 10 things cats love!

High Places

Most (not all) cats love high places. They either climb the trees outside, the highest cupboard they can find in your house, or they try to sit on top of the open door or even try to hold onto the ceiling. Our black cat Kira is a great example of that. Cats like the higher area’s to get a good overview of their preys, predators and us humans that keep busy below.

Sleeping

Cats sleep up to 16 hours a day, while we are more likely awake for 16 hours a day. Cats tend to sleep during the day as their preys wake up during the night. With their near night vision they can see much more than us with a little bit of moonlight or other form of light. They can sleep in the craziest of places and the funniest positions. Curled up in a ball, like a bread, lying long and wide over your sofa or chair, on top of the cupboards or shelves in a kitty bed and more.
What do cats love most

Hunting Mice and Birds

Both indoor and outdoor cats love to hunt. When there are no mice in your house, than they will put their energy in the little cat toy mice, balls or anything that is fun to play with. Yes, also your lollypop, tampong, a little stone from outside and more. If you got cats that are solely indoor, it is a good idea to activate them and play with them daily.

Warmth

I often see cats lying down in full sunlight, whether inside or outside. Our inside cats lay in the windowsill when the sun is out and about. Kira feels too hot in direct sunlight and doesn’t do this, as she is very black and would attract and absorb all the sunlight. Most of our cats love to lie down in the sun, but after a while they go to the shadow.

Inside they also love to lie directly under the heatpump or woodoven. It is important that cats got a water fountain nearby to keep themselves hydrated at all times. In the warmth cats often fall asleep.

Cats love to get food. In nature they have to hunt for their food solely, here they get it served on a (silver?) plate. Cats are very curious and can easily, especially when they are as small as a kitten, take poisonous plants or poisonous human foods for food. They prefer soft wet foods over the dry kibble, but eat mainly everything. Most cats do however not know how or when to stop, so if you would put food down all day and night for them, there is a chance your cat becomes obese.

Security

Cats, like humans, want to feel safe in situations. Some prefer a little hole between you and the sofa (behind your back), others sit high perched on top of your shelf or cupboard. They tuck themselves in a perfect circle with their nose in their tail. Some sleep in a cat bed or next to their biggest dog friend. There are plenty of examples to put forward.

Catnip

There is this special plant that is safe for cats and cats simply love it. They like to roll in it, put their face in it, lick it, eat it up and fall asleep with it. Catnip is often used in cat toys to keep their attention on the toy. We often buy it in the herb form. We sprinkle it near the cat tree or scratching post to make them use those instead of our fantastic looking (badly looking) furniture.

Playing

Cats love to play. Although most of the playing is based upon their hunting or practicing for hunting, cats also do play. They can play a bit rougher than you and I would do. Kittens jump each other on the back and try to nibble each other in the ear or neck. It is an early sign for dominance.

Bags and Boxes

Cats simply love bags and mostly boxes. When you come home with the biggest and newest cat tree you could found, the first thing your dear cat will do is help you out with your construction kit by sitting in the big boxes that it came with. Bags are also famous for a look around. Cats also love to sit on a piece of paper.

Love and Attention

Cats love our company and our cuddling behaviour with cats. They also love friends with which they can play. We can choose to scratch their scratchy points. Felicia for example loves it when we scratch or rub her on her back near her tail. Most cats love a cuddle under their chin, over their fangs, on the side of their face and over the head between the ears. Make sure you know how to cuddle a cat. You stroke them in the right direction (with the hair direction). Note that when cats cuddle with their fangs (sometimes slightly painful) do this to mark you with their pheromones.

Did you recognize any specific habits? Are there perhaps more things that cats hate? Please share below.

What do cats love most

A cat’s schedule can vary. Some days are spent sitting in an Amazon box, some days they work a 7-hour shift at the window on “bird duty.” A non-cat owner might think, “with that kind of schedule, when would they have time for toys?” And a seasoned cat parent would be quick to answer “when they’re not shredding the arm of the couch.”

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Despite their chill reputation, cats need mental and physical stimulation to ward off boredom, stress and separation anxiety. Different cats will take a liking to different toys, but there are some tried-and-true staples that every cat owner should have on hand.

What do cats love most

One of the first things to consider when finding the perfect toy for your cat is that they care less about aesthetics than you. While a felt computer mouse might be hilarious, your cat probably won’t get the joke.

After you surrender choosing a toy based off its pun value, the next things to consider is your cat’s size, cognitive health, dental health, and safety. You want to make sure the toy isn’t too big or small, mentally frustrating, harmful to their teeth, or outright dangerous.

Treat dispenser toys

What do cats love most

A treat dispensing toy accomplishes two things at once: it gives your kitty a workout, and utilizes their problem-solving skills. Your cat will have to push, roll, or rock this kind of toy to get the treats inside. This can also be a good solution if your cat over-or under-eats. It can either feed him in smaller portions, or incentivize him to eat a bit more.

Wand toys

What do cats love most

A wand toy sounds fancier than it is: it’s a stick with a ribbon tied to it. You wave the stick around to make it look like prey and your cat catches it. Easy enough. What’s nice about this toy for you is that it keeps your hand a safe distance from your cat’s claws and teeth. There’s no shortage of variations of the wand toy, and they’re almost always affordable. If your cat gets bored with your current wand, you can switch it out with one that has bells, feathers, or another fun thing on it.

Catnip toys

What do cats love most

Catnip is a perennial herb from the mint family, and it’s aptly named because most cats adore it! Catnip can be stuffed into toys or packed into balls, making your kitty love her toy that much more. It’s safe for your cat to ingest catnip. However, it’s true that cats can become overly excited around it. Just be careful about petting your cat when the toy is out, they could excitedly bite you.

Ball toys

What do cats love most

Ball toys aren’t just for dogs, cats love them too! The ball’s movement along the floor or in a game mimics the movement of prey, which will entice cats to chase and catch. There are lots of ball toys on the market that are suitable for one or many cats. If you are a multi-cat family, an interactive ball game is often so engaging it’s the only toy you have to bring out. It’s sort of a cat family board game, if you will.

In this Article

  • Types of Cat Toys
  • Play Session Planning

While it’s safer for cats to stay indoors and away from dangers like disease and traffic, most house cats are overweight and underactive. Just like people, cats benefit from physical and mental activity. Exercise helps them relieve stress, build muscle, and prevent or reduce unwanted behaviors.В

The simplest way to help your cat get up and moving is to trigger their instincts with cat toys.В

Types of Cat Toys

Cat toys come in many shapes and sizes, and each cat has their own preferences. Here are a few main types to try during playtime with your cat.

Catnip toys. The majority of cats in the U.S. like catnip. Catnip can be stuffed into toys, packed into balls, or simply sprinkled into cardboard boxes. Cats can safely eat catnip, so don’t worry if they lick it.

Just be careful petting your cat when catnip’s in play: some cats get overexcited and may bite when this herb is around.

Some catnip toys you might like to try:

  • Catnip-stuffed balls
  • Dried catnip in newspaper
  • Fresh catnip plants

Ball toys. The biggest element of most cats’ play drive is their instinct to hunt prey. Ball toys mimic the movement of prey animals, and many ball toys can include enticing elements like catnip, noisemakers, fur and feathers, or treats. As long as you’re willing to retrieve these toys from under the couch, ball toys are an excellent option for anytime enrichment.В

Some ball toys you might like to try:

  • Wadded-up paperВ
  • Balls shaped like mice
  • Ping-pong balls
  • Balls with bells

Wand toys. Wand toys are typically sticks with a string or ribbon dangling off the end. They may also have toys, feathers, or noise-makers at the far end of the string to attract your cat’s attention. These toys let you entice your cat from a distance, so you’re not at risk from your kitty’s claws.В

It’s important to put wand toys away at the end of playtime. Why? Three reasons:

  • A toy that’s only available occasionally is more interesting to your cat.В
  • Feathers and ribbons can easily be chewed apart by your cat if it’s left out.
  • Cats value interaction with people even more than they value most toys. Keeping the toy connected to playtime — and to you — helps you build your relationship with them.В

Some wand toys you might like to try:

  • “Fishing pole” type toys
  • Homemade wands, like a ruler and shoelace
  • Large, colorful feathers from a craft store

Food-dispenser toys. Free-feeding cats, or leaving food out at all times, is convenient. However, it can easily lead to overweight animals. Food-dispensing toys mimic the requirements of hunting for food and keep your cat from eating too much throughout the day.В

Before feeding your cat entirely through food-dispensing toys, take the time to train them. Place the toys around the house full of treats and reward your pet for exploring the toys. Once they’ve learned how the toys work, you can slowly decrease the amount of food in their dish and increase the kibble in their toys until they’re eating entirely from toy hunting.

Play Session Planning

Cats enjoy the thrill of the hunt, even indoors. The more you can simulate the hunt for prey during playtime, the more fun your cat will have. Whether you’re making the toy “flee” from your cat or you’re allowing your cat to win and “kill” it, your cat will benefit from the exercise and mental effort.В

Other guidelines to keep in mind to engage your cat in play include:

  • Choose toys your cat enjoys. Every cat has preferences. If your cat loves wand toys but ignores balls, follow their lead.В
  • Protect your appendages. Cats bite on instinct when they’re “hunting”. Keep your fingers and hands away from their mouth and don’t encourage rough play in kittens. Otherwise, it can quickly become painful to play with them as they grow.В
  • Don’t be afraid to take breaks. If your cat seems overexcited and attacks your hands or feet, back off. Come back and reinitiate play when they’re a little calmer.В
  • Avoid laser lights. Many cats find lasers that they can’t catch to be frustrating. Instead, use wand toys that your cats can catch.В
  • Play at different times. Just like you might be a night or a morning person, your cat will have more energy during different times of day. Experiment to see when your cat enjoys playing the most, and then schedule some one-on-one time with your pet to encourage them to exercise.В
  • Play with all your cats. If you have multiple cats, one will probably dominate playtime in a group. If you need to, separate your cats to ensure they all get attention.В
  • Avoid dangerous toys. Don’t allow your cat to play with sharp objects, ribbon, rubber bands, plastic bags, or any small items they could accidentally swallow.В

Keeping your cat active is a key part of enriching your cat’s life. Some of these ideas for play may also be useful in training y our cat, too.

Show Sources

American Animal Hospital Association: “Study: One-third of cat owners use puzzle feeders. What’s really puzzling is why more don’t.”

Applied Animal Behavior Science: “A review of the development and functions of cat play, with future research considerations.”

Behavioral Processes: “Social interaction, food, scent or toys? A formal assessment of domestic pet and shelter cat (Felis silvestris catus) preferences.”

The Canadian Veterinary Journal: “Catnip: Its uses and effects, past and present.”

The Cat Resource Center: “How to Play With Your Cats.”

Cornell Feline Health Center: “How Often Should You Feed Your Cat.”

Dumb Friends League: “Overstimulated Cats.”

Humane Society of Huron Valley: “Cat Toys for Fun and Enrichment.”

International Cat Care: “Playing With Your Cat,” “Understanding the hunting behaviour of pet cats: an introduction.”

VCA Hospitals: “Cat Behavior and Training – Play and Play Toys.”