Cats are people’s favorites from time immemorial. Humans in Ancient Egypt have domesticated them more than 5000 years ago. They were worshipped in the Ancient Greece and they are honored in China and Japan until now. A famous playwright George Bernard Shaw claimed that only a cultivated person is able to understand cats.
These pets look very snobby sometimes but they adore playing with DIY cat toys. They walk by themselves but they really need communication with humans. Let’s see how to entertain them in the best way and to provide an appropriate outlet for play.
Valuable Insights into the Cats’ Preferences
When playing kittens, you help them develop their coordination and physical abilities. Certainly, they refine their social skills when playing with siblings but it can be the only pet at home. In this case, you should select the plays and toys for your fluffy friend. Homemade cat toys became very popular because they are cheap and get our cats up and moving.
However, to choose the best interactive cat toys, look through the special online stores where you can meet affordable prices, high-quality products and a wide range of toys. You can also view ratings and read reviews to make a good choice. Here is the list of the features the toys should have.
- Move rapidly and in various directions.
- Reflect light.
- Be changeable (shape, actions, etc.).
- Have various textures.
- Be similar to natural prey.
Note that it would be better to have several playthings at home to replace them from time to time. The same toy makes the pet lose its interest and motivation.
Top 10 Types of Playthings Your Cats Adore
1. Wand Toys
The base of those cheap cat toys is a simple stick of various length and colors. It has a ribbon or another piece of textile tied to its end. The “magic” stick can crawl, jump, fly, make circles in the air and do everything to entertain your kitten.
2. Ball Toys
Balls are popular among kitties because they are similar to their prey when jumping and rolling all the way to different directions. You can use balls with bells inside them and add some pretty “accessories” that can produce various sounds, shake or shimmer, etc.
3. Catnip Toys
The catnip toys for cats come in various shapes and sizes. Just add this herb to any ball, pillow or artificial mouse or even put a twig of catnip in the box. If the herb is a green product, it is safe for a pet.
4. Crinkle Cat Toy
Crinkly sound action attracts your pet’s attention to enhance play and mental stimulation. Crinkle spiders, mice, teddies, fish, frogs, turtles, and tons of others fit both kittens and adult species. Moreover, you can provide your pet with the crinkle tents, bags, and boxes to give them the greatest playtime while turning the simple box into an amazing activity center.
5. Electronic Cat Toys
You fluffy friends are not only cute but smart as well and they need smart “gadgets”. Electronic playthings help cats spend their energy productively; they keep them entertained and let them stay in great shape.
6. Water Fountains
The fountain can have a shape of a plant, waterfall or tiny water stations. This innovative entertainment fits those kitties that love splashes and pools. However, they have great practical meaning because those gadgets meet the cats’ hydration requirements. No need to leave a bowl with water on the floor anymore. Now, your pet can have a permanent stream of drinking water.
They have various width, length, colors, and a number of directions. The majority of models come with hanging toys inside and cost a bit more. However, one can choose a straightforward model and make some upgrades.
8. Exercise Wheels
Those wheels are similar to hamster ones but have larger dimensions. They’re very helpful to entertain the animal and to let it strengthen their musculature and health. Besides, they provide an indoor activity that is save for both the cat and furniture around. Choose the models with high-quality support and without spokes that can snag and pinch the animal. Besides, the product should have support wheel covers to keep paws away from its moving parts.
9. Climbing Toys
If your pet is fond of scaling new heights, let it climb as much as it wants and provide it with carpeted models, simulated trees, or ramps and walkways that are mounted directly to the walls. You can order ready-to-use models or order the climbing facilities according to your project.
The pet engages their paws to manipulate hidden items through short tunnels, holes and other tiny stashes. Food puzzles are the most popular modification. They are able to eliminate the pets’ boredom, frustration, and environmental stress that usually provoke behavior problems. Foraging models make the cats overcome some hardships to reach food that is good for the health of the very voracious eaters.
Plenty of the toys mentioned above a ready-to-use tips on how to make cat toys out of household items. You can use wool or fleece, feathers or fur. If your children are grown already, some of their toys will be good for your cat – balls, small stuffed animals or toy-cars. You can upgrade them when adding moving part, bells, various tastes and smell. For the latter purpose, we recommend taking not only catnip but also fish, fowl, beef or honeysuckle.
What Toys do the Cats Usually Bann?
Some materials don’t fit for pet’s entertainment. For example, cats can’t stand tin foil – both the sound it produces and the texture that is very unpleasant for the paws. Sticky surfaces are also unacceptable for animals and could be even dangerous. Too loud or sharp sounds and make the pet scared and aggressive. However, everything depends on their individual likes and dislikes.
Boxes are off the Charts
Sometimes we have no suitable toy nearby. In this case, the primitive box can be the most valuable toy for your kitty. Your feline friends, in fact, adore not only boxes but also bags, suitcases, backpacks, laundry baskets, and so on. This is a matter of instincts but not preferences. Cats feel safe there because various enclosed objects serve as a holding place to hide from the enemies or to hound the prey.
Indoor Cats Are Active Cats – Entertainment Is Required!
Some cats prefer to stay at home rather go outdoors but they want to play. They like and need a movement that’s why such toys as balls, laser pointers, tunnels and dozens of other toys including types mentioned above are useful for kitties. However, we are sure it would be great to make your own cat toy to save some money. For example, you can create a simple but very cute wand toy:
- Take an even stick.
- Wrap a piece of faux leather fabric around the end of the stick and fix it with the aid of glue.
- Put some glue on the other end of the stick and fix a ling lace.
- Wrap a piece of cotton string around it the end of the stick (near 2 feet length).
- Make a tassel toy and fix it to the lace.
- You can replace a tassel toy with any other similar objects – rings, pompoms, etc.
Toy But Not Weapon – Keep Your Pet Safe
When buying stuff at the store we usually get a product with guaranteed safety. When using handmade free cat toys, you should pay attention to their shape and materials. Here is the list of some potentially dangerous objects:
- Too thin and stiff strings and dental floss.
- Paper clips that are too tine and the cat can swallow them.
- Pins and needles (of course!).
- Rubber bands (the cat can bite off and swallow some particles).
- Plastic bags that are toxic.
Potentially Dangerous Toys for Cats
Some stores offer toys for imping exercises with elastic elements that can be chewed up and swallowed. Dangling toys are also not safe because the kitty can get tangled up in thin ribbons or threads and hurt itself when attempting to escape.
Small sparkle balls are colorful and bright and everybody knows that they’re dangerous for kids because of their size. The same thing is with cats. They can swallow the attractive bounces and they’re not able to expel them like grass or a fur ball.
Creating DIY Cat Toys – Ball’s in Your Court
How to make cat toys and provide your pet with unique stuff? Plenty of materials on the market keeps your imagination peeled. You can make DIY macaron cat toys and create fishing rods with felted toys, using different colors and shapes and even placing catnip inside.
A simple empty toilet paper rolls can turn into an amazing treat ball and a shoe box will be a great food puzzle if you make bulkheads as units for food. You can use your old t-shirts to cut them and whip up bunches. All the toys you’ll make can be used both as outdoor cat toys and indoor ones.
DIY Cat Condos
We’ve already mentioned climbers above but there are more sophisticated variants of them on the market nowadays. They are condos that look like an artificial tree but with plenty of additional accessories. Those condos can have several platforms (usually 2 or 3), empty, carpeted inside to move up and down through.
Some cat trees are built as several stands (some platforms with supporting beams) of different height. You can do this model by yourself if using an old wooden ladder. Some DIY cat trees include real branches to look more realistic and make the pet close to nature.
There are plenty of other creative variants to make your pet’s life more comfortable and luxurious. For example, it can be a PVC pipe wrapped with a rope for the stand and some baskets attached with brackets.
Scratching Posts – Good for Pets and People
The scratching post is not only a toy but also the priority supplies for every house where a kitty lives. Cats are animals and they can be engaged in negative activity. However, it is negative for us and natural for cats because they were born with the desire to scratch.
Scratching helps eliminate the outer layer from a pet’s nails and stretch their claws, feet, and bodies. This action is also helpful for releasing stress or too strong excitement. Scratching could be dangerous when the pets do it outdoors where they can be injured. Indoor scratching is also good for the pets’ owners that now have a great opportunity to save their furniture and floors.
All those advantages come to reality if you buy a high-quality product with proper height, sturdiness, and that is made of good scratching materials.
How many cat toys do you have for your pet? Do you prefer to purchase them or to make by yourself? Please, share your opinions and experience in the comments.