7 Ways to Make Your Cat Feel Happier
Category: Cat Ownership
Our cats bring us so much happiness every day.
From watching their zany playtime antics to enjoying the melody of soothing purrs to receiving gentle headbutts of love, a lot of good stuff comes our way. In fact, research has shown that the happiness hormone oxytocin is released into our brains by simply petting our cats, which improves overall mood - now there's a great excuse for spending more quality time with your kitty!
Repay the joy your bestie gives you with these seven ways to make your cat feel happier:
1. Supersize Sweetie's Scratching Post
Cats not only scratch objects around them in order to remove the outer coating (i.e., sheath) of their nails, but they also enjoy doing so as a way to play and mark their surroundings with their scent. Needless to say, a scratching post should be a satisfying spot for your kitty to dig into. If you find your cat still uses your furniture for this purpose rather than the post you provided, it probably isn't tall enough since kitties need to stretch out to their full length when they scratch. Simply place the scratcher on top of a stack of sturdy books, such as old textbooks, and secure the base by adding some poster adhesive between the bottom of the scratcher and the top book. Once it allows for a nice stretch, your kitty is sure to take to scratching it.
2. Give Your Buddy the Best of Both Worlds
Enclosures help indoor kitties enjoy the outdoors safely confined and protected from predators. Whether you do it yourself, purchase a kit, or have an enclosure installed by a professional, your options are varied. You can select a miniature version that extends just a few feet from a window or opt for a more complicated design that encompasses your entire yard. Whichever type of enclosure you choose, your kitty will love having a spot of their own where they can get fresh air and enjoy the sights and sounds while being completely secure. (Of course, you should always supervise your kitty's outdoor time, even if they are in an enclosure!)
3. Grow a Garden for Gato
Consider establishing a mini garden of various types of cat grass. Your indoor kitty will enjoy its offerings since they don't have the chance to munch on naturally-growing greens outdoors. Options include oat, wheat, and barley, and you can grow them all indoors on a windowsill. Grass is a source of needed trace minerals, micronutrients, vitamins, and folic acid for cats. According to VCA Animal Hospitals, grass helps with digestion and elimination. Cats who regularly eat grass may be more regular, experience fewer hairballs, and have fresher breath. The best part is it's easier than you think to cultivate cat grass - you can purchase a complete kit with instructions at almost any pet store and many online retailers, and they are very simple to use (no green thumb required!).
4. Give Her Majesty a Room with a View
They say variety is the spice of life, so why not spice up your kitty's life in this simple way: Put a folding table at your kitty’s favorite window and place a rug with a non-skid backing on top of it. Leave the table there for a few days and watch your kitty enjoy the show. Then move the perch to your living room window, and so on. Once you've made a circuit of all the windows or glass doors in your home, start over to keep things fresh. This trick will keep your kitty's interest in the view piqued since the traveling table will provide an ever-changing vista, just like the real outdoors.
5. Treat Tiger to Their Own Territory
Cats love having a spot all their own; whether it's a store-bought bed or house or a DIY version, your kitty will enjoy curling up on their designated crash pad or stealing away to a hidey-hole where no one will bother them. You can make a lovely cat bed for as little as a few dollars if you get a basket from the dollar store and place a small pillow in it. (We've got lots more ideas for making your own cat bed here.) As cute as condos and pop-up houses are, boxes are often the preferred cat hideaway. So, if times are tight, take advantage of that bonkers-for-boxes thing: Upgrade any large box to be a bed by taping the flaps together, cutting a cat-sized hole in the middle as an entrance, and lining it with a cozy blanket.
6. Create a Paw-list for Precious
There are many excellent songs about cats, but what about some songs for cats? The next time you create a playlist of your favorite jams, queue up some tunes tailored to your feline friend. European animal psychologists found that cats like music and even have preferences among types, favoring songs with male choirs and oboes (it seems they prefer deep notes as opposed to high-pitched ones). Surprisingly, these types of music make cats feel happier and less aggressive than other types of music or even pure silence. A 2019 study showed that playing "cat-specific" music reduced kitties' stress levels during vet visits (you can listen to the music used in the study here).
7. Give Your Moggy a Meow-ssage
Do you enjoy getting a massage at the end of a stressful workweek? Guess what - many cats love to get them, too. No special tools or skills are required to answer your kitty's yearning for a rubdown. Start by slowly moving your hand in a circular motion from the bottom of their neck to the base of their tail. Pay attention to the level of pressure and speed that your cat likes or dislikes, and stick to what gets a "paws up" reaction. Accessing acupressure points along the spinal column as you do so will boost endorphins for your kitty - this not only makes them feel happier but also imparts a sense of relaxation and increases their bond with you.
Your Cat's Happiness is Our Sitters' Top Purr-iority
Here at Meowtel, we always want kitties to be happy, living their best lives while their parents do the same. If you're heading out for some happiness-inducing R&R, you can count on Meowtel to match you with a sitter who will cater to your kitty while you're away. Get started here.