Do you feel like your cat is bored? The living environment of cats is sometimes poor in occupations and not very stimulating compared to the external environment. This mainly concerns cats who live in apartments. Cats often spend their time sleeping, eating, meowing, some become aggressive or develop behavioral problems … Know that it is possible to enrich your cat's environment in order to keep him occupied, meet his needs and make happy.
The living environment of cats has changed a lot in recent decades. In fact, a third of cats live in apartments and therefore no longer have access to the outdoors. In the wild, cats spend a good part of their time hunting their prey (up to 20 prey per day). In town, cats do not hunt and they often eat their ration of kibble quickly.
Even if apartment living is far removed from the cats' original way of life, it is possible to enrich their environment and meet their apartment needs. A cat can be happy even if it does not have access to the outside. It is rare that a cat does not get used to indoor life (with the exception of cats that have always lived outside and that move into an apartment: this is called anxiety of the cat in an enclosed environment).
What are my cat's needs?
To make your cat happy, it is important to meet its natural needs. Failure to meet the needs of your pet can lead to boredom, bulimia, aggression, stereotypes, etc.
The cat first needs to receive a complete and balanced diet, the distribution of which is as close as possible to its natural eating behavior. It is also important to provide cats with enough litter for them to do their business.
Cats also need to hunt. A cat whose environment does not allow it to express its predation needs can present aggressiveness towards its owners: this is called aggression of predation.
Cats also need to make their claws, this is a natural behavior of cats. Thus, it is useless to scold your cat if it makes its claws at home but it is advisable to find solutions to redirect them.
There are other needs: climbing, observing, appropriating their surroundings (facial marking), grooming, etc.
Bi-nutrition is highly recommended for cats, it has many benefits for them, from an early age: improved satiety, reduced risk of urinary problems, etc … We invite you to read our fact sheet on bi -nutrition for more information.
It is advisable to give the mash in several small meals a day and to give the kibbles the rest of the day in a toy dispenser or on an activity tray. This occupies cats for several hours a day and they thus make numerous small meals, as in nature.
Regarding the litter boxes, it is important to install a litter box more than the number of cats in the home and to place them in calm and easily accessible places for cats. If the bedding is insufficient or unsuitable for the animal, then this can lead to uncleanliness. You will find more details in our file “My cat urinates in the house: what if it was the litter?”.
Scratching posts must be made available to cats, in strategic places (in front of places scratched by the animal and not in a corner of the room) for them to use them.
Finally, for the well-being of your cat, do not forget to enrich its environment with cat trees, toys, observation posts in height (in front of a window for example), hiding places, etc … Do not hesitate to play regularly with your cat: this will increase its physical expenses, occupy it, soothe it and prevent it from taking you for its prey… In our file “Which toy for my cat?”, you will find all our advice for choosing the toys that will favor your cat!