When is the last time you said, “I just bought my cat this adorable toy and he ignores it? He’s far happier chasing a crumpled ball of paper.” That’s cats for you! That’s because above all, cats love movement, which is why feather wands are among their favorite toys. They also are highly attuned to changes in shapes as well as noises. This is what gets them excited and triggers their predator instincts. So as long as you satisfy these needs, your cat won’t give a ‘meow’ whether the cat toy is store bought or handmade.
If you are going the store-bought route, consider the following. Soft stuffed animals, especially ones with tails, let your cat tap into its natural instincts. If the stuffed animal is small, you may find your cat ‘carrying around its baby’ in its mouth.” If the stuffed toy is larger, about the same size of your cat, then your little tiger just might find hours of enjoyment “taking down the beast.”
However, without perusing the local pet supply store, you can find any number of things that might entertain your cat right in your house. Most cannot resist pouncing or playing hide-and-go seek with a brown paper bag – don’t forget to remove the handles if there are any. Also, it’s a rare cat that doesn’t long for its very own cozy cardboard box, especially one with extra holes on the side for optional entry. If those toys are already old hat to your cat, here are some other suggestions.
Take a plastic ping-pong ball and place it in a large plastic tub or dry bathtub and watch your cat chase it around. Round plastic shower curtain rings and the caps from cardboard milk cartons also can keep your kitty entertained and in good shape from swatting them around the floor.
What kitty can’t resist the empty cardboard rolls from toilet paper or paper towels? Just add some string, beads or bells inside and your furry friend will be enraptured. You also can try placing jingle bells in an old tin (See how long you can stand the noise as your cat rolls it around.) or toss out some ribbon and watch your kitty really get all wound up. If your cat is hooked on catnip, you’ve got it made. Stuff a child’s sock with cotton and catnip, tie or sew the top closed, and you’ve got an instant catnip toy!
Whatever the cat toy, make sure are involved. It’ll be fun for both of you and helps to build a stronger bond with your best buddy.