The best thing about social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic is the opportunity to be homebound with our cats. great opportunity to spend quality time with your cat doing things you love, like bingeing your favorite shows on the couch, but also finding ways to spend time together by playing games.!
Playing with your cat is not only fantastic mental and physical exercise for your feline companion, engaging your cat in games can be calming and relaxing for you, not to mention a great distraction from everything going on in the world.
Games to play with your cat while at home due to the coronavirus
Hide and Seek: Some cats do come when they are called, but even for those less likely to respond to you calling their name, the crinkle or shaking of the treat canister will make most cats come running. To play this game, while your cat is distracted hide in different parts of your home, behind furniture, behind a partially closed door, and “call” your cat with the sound of her favorite treats! Start by hiding in an easy to find location, such as in another room but not actually hidden, and the more familiar with the game your cat gets you can start hiding in trickier locations. Don’t forget to reward your cat by giving her the treats once she finds you to ensure she stays interested in the game!
Video Games: It’s not just people who love playing video games. Today’s cats can have a lot of fun with high-tech games. If you have an iPad or tablet that you don’t mind getting kitty prints on, go to your app store and search “games for cats.” There are a variety of free or inexpensive options to entice your cat. These games tend to feature fish, insects or mice that digitally crawl across the screen and respond to your cat pawing at the screen trying to catch them. It’s entertaining to watch cats become enthralled with screen time but beware: Though your cat might decide anytime your tablet comes out it’s time for him to play!
Wand Toys: Cats love to play games of chase, and wand toys are a favorite game for most cats. Don’t have one? You can make one with a ruler, chopstick, or dowel and some string or ribbon. Tie a feather or cat toy to the end of the string/ribbon and attach the string/ribbon to the ruler/dowel and start playing. Wand toys inspire your cat’s natural desire to hunt and chase, and this game can really get your cat moving. Let your cat chase and leap after the toy around your house and up and down from furniture. Be sure to supervise your cat with all wand play to prevent your cat from chewing on or eating the string/ribbon.
Bird Feeders: Spring is in the air and in many areas the birds are already returning. If you have outdoor space or a balcony where you can attach bird feeders do so in front of a window where your cat enjoys napping. Make sure the window is in an area where your cat has access to view it. You and your cat can have hours of enjoyment watching the different birds visiting your window.
Build A Clubhouse: Have you been getting lots of supplies delivered to your house instead of going out? If so, then you likely have a number of boxes sitting around. Those boxes can easily be repurposed into your cat’s new favorite clubhouses, or fort!
Cut windows and doors into the boxes for your cat to get in. You can also attach boxes together using duct tape and cut holes between the levels so your cat can explore. Most cats find boxes on their own to be a great source of entertainment. However, if you want to spice the game up and make things more engaging you can hide your cat’s favorite toys and treats into the boxes to allow your cat to “hunt” their toys in the boxes. You can also decorate the outside of the clubhouse.
Obstacle Courses: In addition to using boxes to build interactive clubhouses, you can use boxes to build an obstacle course. Open both ends of boxes to create tunnels, set up empty paper towel tubes balanced on small boxes to create jumps. Use treats to lure or entice your cat over and through your obstacles! Once your cat has mastered the first course, keep changing the order of your obstacles to give your cat new challenges.