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Playing With Your Cat

Your First Cat Tutorial : Lesson 8

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Older cat playing

Older Cats love to play, too!

Franny Syuyf Billy playing with Peek-a-Prize

Toys can be educational as well as fun

Franny Syuyf

New to Cats > Getting Your First Cat > How to Play With Your Cat

What's the big deal, you ask? Everyone knows how to play with a cat! Well, yes and no. For instance, some people (guys, for the most part) want to wrestle with a cat like they would do with a dog.

Wrong! Cats are not dogs, and though they may appear to be having a great time, you're teaching them that hands are toys. Unless you want to carry life-long scars when that kitten grows up, he needs to know right now that hands are not toys.

Toys, Toys, Toys

Before You Buy Cat Toys
You probably have all kinds of recyclable things around the house that would make irresistible toys for your cat, like paper bags and boxes. Did you know that drinking straws are favorite toys of both cats and kittens, as well as a great teething tool for the youngsters?

Bet You Can't Buy Just One
The day will come when you won't be able to resist buying "a few" toys for your cats. Stock up on toy catnip mice (you'll want plenty of these), crinkly "prey," and balls of all kinds to throw and chase. Somewhere along the line, you'll want to splurge on a great interactive toy. Whatever you do, don't miss out on Da Bird!

How to Play With Your Cat

Now's the time for the real fun! After all, this is the reason many people feel the need for a feline companion - a furball they can play with, to fulfill the need social intercourse with other humans just doesn't offer.

This article suggests creative ways to interact with your cat, as well as signs to watch for to call it a day. (You can have plenty more play time in days to come.)

Catnip!

Who Put the 'Nip' in Catnip?
That cats generally go crazy over catnip is a given truth. You'll definitely want to play on an ongoing supply of catnip for your kitty. You can rub it on scratching posts and toys, or just let him eat it (a small amount, please.) For extra fun, grow your own, and make him a few catnip "mice," using purchased baby socks, or use some of those "unmatching pairs" in your sock drawer.

Top 10 Catnip Products
Many cats are crazy for catnip, and a dab of catnip will irresistibly lure cats to any toy, scratching post, or kitty tower. Fresh catnip is also a favorite treat for cats. Here are my top picks for catnip, catnip treats, catnip toys and accessories, and catnip to grow. In Lesson 9, we'll explore the indoor-outdoor debate, a subject I mentioned earlier, and one that has serious ramifications for your cat's well-being and longevity.

New to Cats > Getting Your First Cat > How to Play With Your Cat

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