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Choosing Cat Toys

Updated on September 25, 2015

Cats Like to Play

Cats are very intelligent animals, and they can be very curious at that. Without stimulation, your cat can be very mischievous, which is where good cat toys come into play. Although, not all cats will play with cat toys, if you are able to find toys that your cat likes, you'll find that s/he will play more and terrorize less.

Although, it has been a long time since I have had a cat, I have worked with cats and spoken to many cat owners, and you'll be surprised as to what they will play with. Some prefer the mouse toys, whereas others will only play with the plastic spring toys.

When looking for toys for your cat(s), you may want to check out some of the following tips to choosing toys for your cat, as you'll want to consider all of the options.

Just remember that what works for one cat, may not work for another, and in some cases, depending on how destructive or mischievous your cat is getting, you may find it better to spend a little more than a little less until you find the perfect toys that will entertain your cat when you can't.

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Not All Toys are Safe

When choosing cat toys, you want to always keep safety in mind, as just like picking out the perfect toys for your children, you want to watch out what toys you pick for your cat(s).

Because there are many cat toys with bells, sequins, rattles, and various other decorations, you have to watch out when they come loose, as your cat may accidentally swallow the adornments. And, you don't want your cat to choke on a piece of his favorite toy.

Make sure that bells and rattles are in closed compartments, and that any additional decorations are sewn into the toy versus just glued on. IE make sure that eyeballs, noses, jewels, etc are sewn into the toy.

As for strings and string-like toys, make sure that long, dangling pieces are big enough so that they can't be swallowed. You also want to make sure that they are as secured as possible, being sewn into the base of the toy.

No toy is going to be perfect and accidents happen more often than pet owners would like, so it's up to you as the pet parent to keep a close eye on your cat's toys. At the first signs of damage, you want to patch up the toy or just throw it out and replace it with a new one.

You'll find that younger cats and kittens are rougher with their toys, so you'll need to frequently replace the old toys for new ones.

* Note: If your cat does end up swallowing a string and you see it coming out the bum, do not pull it out! You want to immediately take the cat to the vet and have a veterinarian safely remove the string, as yarn and such can cause severe damage to the intestines if pulled out.

Choosing the Perfect Cat Toy

When trying to pick out the perfect cat toy, it's best to watch your cat play around the house before you take the trip to the pet store and walk up and down the toy isle for the perfect toy for your cat.

If you can pinpoint how your cat likes to play, you can better decide which toys he'll like the best.

Does your cat like to chase and pounce? Stalk? Roll around with odds and ends in his paws? Fetch? Etc.

Just keep an eye out on how your cat likes to play, and you can easily find the perfect toys that match his habits.

Also, when looking for the perfect toys for your cat, check out different sizes, smells, textures, shapes, and sounds. You want to keep your cant entertained and you want make sure that you can keep your cat mentall stimulated, as well as physically.

It's also a good idea that you try out different types of toys for your cat. You'll find that the catnip mouse isn't the only thing on the market these days, and if you stick with that fuzzy mouse, your cat really isn't getting the full potential of the toys that are available for him.

Types of Cat Toys

Fishing pole type toys are loved by cats who like to play with you. Cats who like to stalk around and chase things, will also like these type of toys. Essentially, it's a long plastic poles with objects hanging on the end by a string. Usually, you'll find feathers tied to the string.

Furry mice are a classic for most cats. Although, my cat never really cared them, I have encountered many cats who love them. There are many furry mix that are filled with catnip, making them all the more appealing to cats. Cats who like to roll around with things in their paws will love these little toys.

Another toy that I've seen a number of cats go crazy for is the plastic donut style toy that has a jingly ball on the interior portion. The cat can see the toy and paw at it, but the way the toy is built, he really can't get it out. This will keep some cats entertained for hours.

Other toys that you can consider purchasing for your cat can include:

  • Cat furniture (cat trees)
  • Catnip toys
  • Foil, crunchy balls
  • Interactive toys
  • Laser lights
  • Plastic balls with bells inside them
  • Plastic springs
  • Scratching posts
  • Treat dispensing toys
  • Tunnels

Cat Trees

Although, it's more expensive than a catnip mouse, you'll find that the cat trees and cat furniture pieces that you can purchase is not only a luxury for your cat but an exercising means.

Cat furniture comes in a variety of sizes and heights. Cats can perch, climb, and lounge around while watching everything going on beneath them. Most of the cat furniture pieces include ledges, tunnels, ropes, and sometimes dangling balls and feathers to keep your cat further entertained.

If you don't want to purchase something large, you want to purchase whatever is in your budget. Cat furniture really is a great addition to have in your home, so if anything you want at least one small cat tree.

The cat furniture pieces come in a variety of shapes, styles, and materials. Sometimes you can even find them with multiple materials on the same piece of furniture, which makes it all the more entertaining for your cat.

Other things that you can do to entertain your cat, is to ensure that there is a window where he can watch the birds and bugs outside, and try setting aside a few shelves in your bookshelf for your cat to lounge.

Other Toys for Cats

Don't limit yourself to the toy isle at the petstore. You can also look around your home for toys for your cat.

  • Balls of tin foil
  • Balls of paper
  • Toilet paper rolls
  • Empty paper bags
  • Sheets

Cats love anything they can hide behind and under. You can even set up a kitty fort for your cat to play in and around for a few hours. Just remember that you probably will want to clean up the mess before inviting guests over, so I'd suggest keeping it simple.

But, you'll find that the most important toy that a cat can have, is a friend. Cats are very social creatures, and by having two cats, you're really not spending as much as you'd think extra on food and bills. The two cats will play with each other and keep each other out of trouble.. Most of the time...

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