Friday, September 18, 2015

An Active Cat is a Healthy Cat



Many people do not realize the benefit of exercise for cats.  Although they do have the evolutionary advantage of a high metabolism, cats still require consistent exercise to help maintain a healthy body condition and overall health. Felines have a long history of hunting and prowling, and keeping those natural instincts alive in your cat is important. Encourage your feline family member to be more active, and you will have a happier and healthier pet.


Cats are natural hunters
Originally, cats lived mostly outdoors. Keeping a cat as a household pet has become common only in recent years. In the past, cats survived by doing what they knew best – catching things (like mice and rodents). They kept entertained and fit by spending hours searching, stalking, and catching their meals. Now, most cats live indoors, and “the chase” is no longer a part of their lives. However, it is important to your cat’s health to allow them to use those hunting and prowling instincts they are so used to.



Keep your cat’s activity creative
Your cat probably enjoys lounging around (Adult cats sleep more than 16 hours a day!), but every cat needs to engage in some physical activity each day.

Activities that cats enjoy include: 

Cat trees and scratching posts: Cat trees are ideal because they entice cats to climb, which keeps their muscles working, and scratching provides both exercise and fun for your cat.

Mice and feather toys: These toys allow cats to mimic the act stalking their prey, an activity they are naturally inclined to do. 

Laser pointers: A beam of light acts as a bug that your cat can chase. Be sure to avoid pointing the beam of light directly into their eyes.

Exercise wheels: This is a great exercise for cats who need to lose weight. 

Indoor aquarium: An aquarium acts as constant entertainment for your cat.

Walks: If your cat enjoys the outdoors, going on walks in a stroller can be very stimulating. 




Why it’s important for cats to exercise
It’s important that your cat doesn’t become lazy. Lying around all day without any exercise can lead to obesity in cats, which causes issues like diabetes, joint pain, and liver problems. Cats should not eat more calories than they are expending. So, short activities (at least 10-15 minutes) throughout the day are essential to your cat's overall health.

Play time also allows cats to build trust with people. Creating that strong bond makes your feline friends happier and healthier.

Physical activity keeps your cat from getting bored. A bored cat becomes very curious, and may resort to scratching and chewing on furniture. Cats are less likely to become destructive if they get their energy out through daily exercise.

There are both physical and mental benefits to helping your cat stay active. Keeping your cat connected to its natural instincts is important to their overall well-being. Here at Morris Animal Inn, we understand that healthier cats are happier cats. 






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