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The Top Solo Play Cat Toys

Updated on October 15, 2012

Keeping your Cats Entertained...By Themselves!

I'm sure we've all had days at home where we are trying to get chores or work at home done, but our beloved felines just won't have any of it. While we love our cats, there are definitely times when we would like a little privacy to get a few things done and need something to keep our friends occupied. Since I have five cats and work from home, I definitely know how much of a struggle this can be. Join me as I share the best solo play cat toys my feline friends give four paws up to.

Lovely Lasers

Paws-down, one of my cat's most favorite toys ever is a laser pointer, and thus one of the easiest ways to get them to calm down and be less hyper. However, one down side is that with most, you have to be actively moving the laser pointer around yourself to keep your cats entertained. Luckily, with this newer toy, the FroliCat BOLT Interactive Laser Pet Toy solves this problem. This battery-operated laser toy has the ability to be left on the floor, or some other flat surface, and will automatically move the laser beam around so you can continue about your business while your cat is thoroughly entertained. The toy will automatically turn off after 15 minutes, so there is no need to worry about your cat over exerting them self or constantly burning through AA batteries. There is also a manual mode you can use when you have time to play with your cat yourself. As always, when using a laser pointer yourself, be extra careful to never shine the beam into your cat's eyes as this could cause permanent eye damage.

The Cat Dancer

Another one of my cat's favorite toys, that also happens to be quite cheap and affordable, is the Cat Dancer. It comes in two styles. The more expensive includes the original model, plus a piece of material with a sticky back that you can place on a wall to hold the toy permanently in place. However, instead of using this, since I live in a rented house and didn't know how difficult it would be to get the material off the wall, I just wrapped part of the toy's wire around a door knob and my cat's love playing with it by themselves just the same. The cats are often interested in it on their own, but if it's a lazy day and they need some exercise, I often just swing the toy back and forth a bit to get their attention and they will run up and swat at it for half an hour easily.

Bergan Turbo Track Cat Toy

Here's a toy both humans and cats will enjoy! This toy does require a bit of time to put together, but that's the fun part. This toy includes plastic parts that link together to form a track and also includes a ball that your cats can bat around the track. The unique quality about this toy is that not only can you form the traditional figure 8 track, but you can manipulate or buy extra pieces to create any shape you want! The possibilities are endless and will always give your cat variety. If you build a large track, you may want to consider adding more balls, especially if you have multiple cats. For cats that love to scratch things, you can also purchase a scratch pad accessory that will fit in the figure 8 combination, which would also easily hold some catnip to get your cat even more interested. My cats love this toy and often when one gets interested, another will come up, and the two will bat the ball back and forth to each other on the track for quite some time.

Bergan Turbo Track and Accessories

Tunnels and More

For the cat owner that has some extra space, tunnels can be an item that cats love to run through and hide in. If you are limited in space, there are also shorter varieties. If your cat likes it outdoors but doesn't want to be on a leash like a dog, there are some that are designed to be placed outside or on a balcony or patio. Another fun item to give your cat a treat, but also keep them busy, is to buy a specially designed ball that you can put cat treats or food inside, that will then dispense them as your cat rolls and chases the ball. This is also a great way to help keep your cat at a healthy weight while still giving them indulging treats.

Scratching and Lounging the Day Away

While these may not be considered a typical cat toy, I always keep at least a few of these around since they offer more than one benefit. These days most scratchers and loungers have additional pieces that your cats can play with and attack to help keep them entertained. They also can provide a safe haven for your cat to relax in, and, especially if you purchase a variety of items made in different materials, will help persuade your cat to use these items to scratch and keep their claws fresh, instead of using your furniture. Since, from my experience, my cats tend to get bored with this type of item after a while, I will sprinkle them with catnip or move their location now and then to keep things fresh. The most popular one, however, has been the SmartCat Bootsie's Bunkbed, which can house a cat on top and inside.

Using Toys You Probably Already Have

A variety of toys you interactively use to play with your cat can also be used for solo play. Many cats love searching for toys and then batting them around, especially when they have been tagged with the scent of cat nip. To do this, simply buy some dried catnip or catnip capsules, place in a bag or container, add toy mice or balls, seal, and wait for a few days while the toys absorb the scent. After a few days, take out some of the toys and hide them in places your cat normally stays when you would like them to keep themselves entertained. Hiding them under furniture your cat can get under, pillows, and their bedding are all good places your cat is likely to sniff out the nip. If you have a pair of shoes you don't use anymore, you may want to consider leaving a toy in them for your cat, as from my experience this is one of a cat's favorite stashing places. Also, don't forget that many cats simply like playing in an empty box or wadded up ball of foil.

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    • ismeedee profile image

      ismeedee 5 years ago

      We're going to get the cat dancer for our kitten. Hoping it's stronger than the bungee thing we got which she loved so much she broke to bits within a week!!

    • Michelle Pegram profile image

      Michelle Pegram 5 years ago

      @MBCOnline: Thank you so much! :)

    • profile image

      MBCOnline 5 years ago

      You have a great lens! Thanks for sharing!

    • Dressage Husband profile image

      Stephen J Parkin 5 years ago from Pine Grove, Nova Scotia, Canada

      Our cat Robin the barn kitten's favourite toy is a live field mouse or mole, he is a barn cat! After that it is a tree to climb, a fence post to scratch on, and climb, and a horse water bucket to climb on or drink out of. Finally but definitely not least he loves to play with hay bales.

    • sharioleary profile image

      Shari O'Leary 6 years ago from Minnesota

      What a wonderful list of toys you have here. Thanks for sharing!

    • Michelle Pegram profile image

      Michelle Pegram 7 years ago

      @WildFacesGallery: Thanks so much for your comment! I'll be sure to lensroll to you also.

    • WildFacesGallery profile image

      Mona 7 years ago from Iowa

      My cat finds all sort of not toy items to play with. But he particularly likes my paintbrushes. Stcks with hair . . . the only way it could be better would be to be covered in nip. Nice lens. lensrolling to my Ask The Budda (cat) lens