Toys like the MeoHui cat feather toy or the KONG active feather teaser catnip toy have easy-to-hold wands for you with feathery temptations at the other end of the toy for your cat.
Another toy that lets you be part of the game is a laser pointer specially made for pets. Although they should never be pointed in a pet’s eyes and only used with adult supervision, these low-level laser toys delight cats as they chase the light.
And if your hands are full, toys such as the SereneLife Automatic Cat Laser Toy, have an automatic timer so you can set it for a few minutes of play and exercise time for your cat.
Toys can also provide fun and challenge for your cat when you’re away. Catnip-filled toys fascinate some cats — only about half of all cats are fans of catnip — while balls, whether crinkly, rattling, or fuzzy, delight others.
For more interactivity, look for toys that challenge cats like the Cheese Chase from Petstages. A translucent track holds a ball and tempts felines to slap the ball in circles while a top compartment with holes tests cats with another ball contained inside.
And toys that contain treats — or your cat’s dry food — can make a meal last and help your cat maintain a healthy weight at the same time. Fill a toy like the PetSafe’s SlimCat, then watch your cat have fun rolling the ball around the room, dispensing one piece at a time as it rolls.
Just as with children’s toys, one of the keys to success is to rotate cat toys, leaving one out just a few days, then putting it away for a while for reintroduction later. And, just as with a two-legged child’s toy, don’t forget to save the box the toy came in — that can often be just as much fun!
What kind of cat barrel does your kitty prefer? Which ones would you recommend? Let us know in the comments below!
There are many factors that contribute to the safety or danger of a toy. Many of those factors, however, are completely dependent upon your cat’s size, activity level and personal preference. Another factor to be considered is the environment in which your cat spends her time. Although we can’t guarantee your cat’s enthusiasm or her safety with any specific toy, we can offer the following guidelines.
The things that are usually the most attractive to cats are often the very things that are the most dangerous. Cat-proof your home by checking for: string, ribbon, yarn, rubber bands, plastic milk jug rings, paper clips, pins, needles, and anything else that could be ingested. All of these items are dangerous, no matter how cute your cat may look when she’s playing with them.
Avoid or alter any toys that aren’t cat-proof by removing ribbons, feathers, strings, eyes, or other small parts that could be chewed and/or ingested.
Soft toys should be machine washable. Check labels for child safety, as a stuffed toy that’s labeled as safe for children under three years old, doesn’t contain dangerous fillings. Problem fillings include things like nutshells and polystyrene beads. Also, rigid toys are not as attractive to cats.