Keeping a cat entertained can be complicated and there's a lot more than playing and feeding a cat. Below, is a list of 62 original ideas to try with your cat.
1. Walk Your Cat on a Leash
Walking your cat on a leash will allow your cat to explore the outdoors and it's a great way to drain their energy.
Start slow, indoors, and little by little increase the difficulty and the reach of your walks.
2. Teach Your Cat Clicker Training
Clicker training will improve your bond with your cat and will keep your cat sharp and entertained.
I have created a comprenhensive guide to train your cat, but you can also learn clicker training watching the video below:
3. DIY Cat Hemp Rope Toys
Cats love hemp and it's natural and sustainable. Nothing better for cats, that love chewing on things and get bored easily.
I like doing monkey fists with hemp rope for my cat.
Here's a tutorial on how to make them:
4. Build Cat Furniture on Your Walls
There are a bunch of ways to catify your home but wall furniture is my favorite because it saves a lot of space and cats love climbing.
I use Catastrophic Creations at home, but there are cheaper ways to achieve the same result using Ikea furniture or other brands.
5. Teach Your Cat to Fetch
Teaching your cat to fetch is not easy but if you get to do it, it's a very convenient way to drain their energy!
Start by picking a toy that your cat loves and throw it away, close to the floor. If your cat chases it, you are on a good path.
Pick up the toy from your cat and reward your cat either with clicker training or by giving them a treat.
By repeating this process your cat is going to learn that bringing the toy back gives them treats and you are going to get the behavior repeated in the future.
6. Go on a Roadtrip with Your Cat
Getting your cat to be comfortable on a car is easier than what you think.
In this article you can learn all about getting your cat comfortable at riding by car.
The theory is simple:
- Get your cat comfortable inside the car with the car stopped
- Get your cat comfortable in movement
- Get everything you'll need to have a comfortable trip
Learn it with more detail in the below video:
7. Download an App for Cats on your iPhone/iPad
Sometimes we don't have free time on our side but our cat is bored and requesting attention.
There are a few apps you can download to your phone or ipad and get your cat to play by tapping on the screen to "catch" insects or mice.
Here's a TOP 10 Apps to play with your cat
8. Let Your Cat on the Hallway
When I don't have time to entertain my cat, I leave the door of the hallway to my apartment building and I let Mia explore around.
All neighbors love her already.
Unleashed dogs and unwanted visits to other apartments are a risk so if you decide to do so, keep an eye on your cat!
9. Use Feeding Toys for Cats
Feeding Toys are the best way to slow down your cat during meals and it's also a great way to keep their brains working.
The ones that I like the most are from Doc & Phoebe's:
10. Make an Obstacles Course for Your Cat
Cats are very good at memorizing your apartment but challenging their routine can be enriching and can help them stay sharp.
Try adding obstacles around the house with boxes and "force them" to figure out how to get to you using some food as a lure.
11. Put on the Cat TV
Cat TV are videos that are designed for cats to watch. Usually they display birds, mice or lizzards (common cat prey in the wild) and your cat will stare at them for hours.
YouTube is the best place to go get those videos, but let me share with you an example below:
12. Play With Your Cat Using a String
When every other toy fails a string won't. Strings are to cat toys what cardboard boxes are to cat beds.
For some innexplicable reason, the cheapest the toy or the bed the more our cat will like them and a simple string can get your cat running for hours.
13. Let Your Cat Indulge on Catnip
Catnip is an herb from the mint family that produces an essential oil called nepetalactone. When interacting with catnip, this essential oil is breathed in and (in the cats that react to catnip) sends the information to the amigdala which is triggered and causes your cat to respond emotionally (similar to what weed does in humans).
The effects of catnip are short-lived and only last 10-15 minutes and is considered non-toxic. If you want to try catnip, you can buy some in your local pet store or on Amazon.
14. Groom Your Cat
While not all cats like grooming time, most do.
Grooming is a good opportunity to bond with your cat and will also help you prevent your cat from having hairballs.
The last but not least benefit of grooming your cat regularly is that the amount of hair you find around the house will decrease considerably!
15. Get on the Balcony With Your Cat
Cats love bird-watching and car-watching and everything watching.
While leaving your cat alone on the balcony can be dangerous as there have been reported some cats falling or jumping off the balcony, under supervision or if your balcony has a safety net, spending time on the balcony can be super enriching with your cat.
Try it in summer with a cold drink or in winter with a hot chocolate.
It can make your day!
16. Teach Your Cat to High Five
Teaching your cat to High Five is SUPER EASY, will take only a few minutes and once they learn it, they won't forget.
It's also a very easy way into Clicker Training your cat.
17. Build a DIY Cat Tree
This is not something I've done but I know someone who has!
Take a look at this video with a step by step process explaining how to build a cat tree from scratch!
18. Visit a Pet Store with Your Cat
Some pet stores will allow you to enter with your pet. There's sometimes dogs but all must be leashed.
When I go with my cat Mia, she visits the store from my shoulder and I let her pick a few toys.
Call the store upfront but tody, petco and many local stores allow pet visits.
19. Put Bird Feeders for Your Cat to Watch
This is the premium version of CAT TV. While putting your cat to watch TV is a great idea, allowing your cat to seeing the animals in real life is even a more engaging experience.
Adding a bird feeder will attract birds and will allow your cat to bird-watch from the window.
20. Start an Instagram for Your Cat's Pictures
This is how we started our social media adventure with Mia @outdoorbengal
I started taking pictures of her on the wild and when she was doing fun stuff and after posting them on instagram for a bit, the account started getting traction.
take a look at her profile, it's so cute!
21. Watch Together Cat Videos on YouTube
Who doesn't like watching Cat Videos YouTube? Your cat is not an exception.
Put some cat videos on YouTube and watch cuteness unfold with your cat on your lap!
Thank me later!
22. Play Hide and Seek With Your Cat
Playing hide and seek with your cat is fun and they love it (because they always win).
It's as easy as to change rooms from where your cat is and call their name.
Hide somewhere where they can't see you right away. When they show up, surprise them and run to another room.
After a few repetitions your cat will start chaising you around the house and if you don't hit any table or door with your pinky, it's super fun.
If your cat doesn't know their name, you can teach your cat to come when called very easily by watching this video:
23. Create DIY Cat Toys with Toilet Paper Roll
There's a double benefit to DIY anything:
- You Save Money
- It's fun
Here's a tutorial on DIY toys using toilet paper rolls:
24. Teach Your Cat to Jump on Your Shoulder
My favorite trick to teach a cat since I started learning about cat training is this wonderful display of agility and trust.
Getting your cat to jump on your shoulder from the floor is just wonderful and practical.
It will give your cat a safe spot to get to if something unexpected happens outdoors, it will allow you to ride on a bike with them and it's also very convenient for hiking.
Learn how to teach your cat to jump on your shoulder by watching this video:
25. Hide Food for Your Cat Around the House
Cats will ask for food every fraction of a second. They do about 16 meals a day in the wild and they expect the same amount of commitment indoors.
Hiding food around the house will keep your cat entertained looking for food as they would on the wild.
- Make sure you count calories so that you don't overfeed your cat if you hide food around the house.
- Remember where you place the food and collect it after the day is over in case your cat doesn't find it. The alternative is to create a microfauna settlement.
26. Hire a Photoshoot with Your Cat
We all take pictures of our cats but have you considered how amazing professional pictures look like?
Here's a few Instagram Accounts that do an amazing job at doing pet portrait:
27. Make a Castle Using Cardboard Boxes
This one is more to keep a handy person entertained than the cat themselves but it's a fun weekend activity.
Collect boxes worth a couple months of shipments and stitch them together to build a kitten palace.
Here's an example of someone very good at it:
28. Go on Walks Around the Neighborhood
One of my favorite activities to do with my cat Mia is to walk on a leash.
Getting a cat harness and walking your cat on a leash it's an amazing way to:
- Burn Energy
- Get to Know your cat better
The process is fairly simple at it's summarized as:
- Get the cat comfortable with the harness
- Get the cat comfortable at walking on a leash
- Get the cat used to the outdoor noises
More about it in this post where I explain step by step how to walk your cat on a leash.
29. Create Cat DIY Toys with Socks
Another one for the handy people. Socks are eaten by your washing machine as it happens to every other person in this planet.
Take the socks that have no matching buddy and get them to better use!
30. Teach Your Cat to Lay Down
Teaching your cat tricks is super fun. There are easy tricks and not-so-easy ones.
Teaching your cat to lay down it's an advanced trick and there are 2 main ways to do so using clicker training:
- Marking: Use the clicker to mark the behavior when it naturally happens. Your cat will naturally do it more often.
- Luring: Use a treat to get your cat in a laying down position. The best way to achieve it is by using your leg and making your cat crawl under your leg. When the belly touches the floor, click, then reward.
Take a look at this complete guide to train your cat!
31. Make a Maze Using Cardboard Boxes
If you are a handyman or a handywoman and you succeeded at making a giant cardboard castle for your cat, take a look at this video to make a maze instead!
32. Make a Backdrop and Photoshoot Your Cat
Have you tried to take pictures of your cat? haha I know the answer to that one... Most likely your phone is filled with them.
Have you tried to create a beautiful backdrop for your photoshoot?
If not, the options are endless! Try using lights, flowers or even a curtain to get a more professional look!
33. Teach Your Cat to Sit
Another clicker training challenge!
Teaching your cat to sit it's as cute as it's useful! Learn how in this video:
34. Make Homemade Cat Treats
Cats love treats and if your cat does not like treats, probably you are doing something wrong.
Homemade cat treats are healthy, tasty and fun to make:
• 6 oz. undrained tuna
• 1 c. cornmeal
• 1 c. flour
• 1/3 c. water
Mix ingredients together. Flatten the paste and shape it into 1/4-inch pieces. Bake on a cookie sheet at 350° for 20 minutes. As soon as they are cool you can let your cat dig in!
35. Play with Aluminium Foil Balls
Playing with your cat it's one of the greatest ways to bond with them.
There's one toy my cat Mia never gets tired of, foil balls.
Just make a bunch of little foil balls of different sizes and get your cat to chase them around the house.
36. Create a Cooling Kit for Summer
Cats are not very good at managing extreme temperatures, that means they get very hot in summer and cold in winter.
To cool your cat during summer months there's a little trick that works wonders: creating a cooling pat using rice!
This pad can serve as either a heating or cooling device. All you need for this project are a pillowcase, a bag of rice, and the ability to sew the pillowcase closed.
Once you have de kit done, you can place it in the oven on the lowest setting or on the freezer.
37. Create a Warm Blanket for Winter
Instructions on idea 36 (:
38. Catify Your Livingroom
Companionship is about caring and adapting. Your cat is sharing your house with you and catifying your home will make the indoor space more exciting and fun for your cat.
It is key to catify spaces where there's social activity. Catifying a room in a floor there's no one won't make your cat any favor as they likely will hang out where people are.
Add a few scratchers, shelves and cat trees to make the common spaces cat-friendly!
39. Teach Your Cat to Ride on a Bike
Teaching your cat to ride with you will open a world of possibilities.
You can take them to parks or even on a roadtrip.
I am working on a video explaining how to do it. Subscribe to our YouTube channel to get notified when the video is up!
40. Get Your Cat to Chase an R/C Car
I tried it without much success but here's how I did it:
- Get Your Cat's favorite treat
- Buy a cheap R/C car on Amazon
- Attach the treat to the car
Here's how it went: https://youtube.com/shorts/oSA1cB623kU
41. Build a Catio
Catios are a good alternative to fully outdoor cats for parents that can't take their cats out on a leash. I am a fan of adventure cats, and I encourage you to take a look at this guide and turn your cat into an adventure cat, but catios are pretty, and your cat will love them.
42. Introduce Your Cat to Another Cat
If you have the feeling that your cat is bored, there's a good way to entertain your cat that many cat parents overlook...
GETTING ANOTHER CAT!
Whilst common sense might tell us that 2 cats are 2x the work, the reality is that 2 cats will entertain each other and will ultimately make your life easier.
If you want to introduce your cat to another cat, you have to do it the right way.
This is why I created this tutorial explaining you step by step, how to introduce 2 cats successfully:
43. Go to a Café that Allows Pets
Cat cafes are amazing. You get to sip a coffee while some gorgeous cats will salute you...
This is not a good idea if you have allergies hehe
Some cities don't have cat cafes but what they do have are cafes that allow pets. If your cat is comfortable around dogs, that's definetely something you should try!
44. Take Your Kitty Camping
Camping is not for every person but every cat will like camping.
While there's a bit of acclimatation, the beauty about camping with a cat is that they will have a "safe place" to go to, while being able to enjoy outdoors.
In addition to the leash, I really encourage you to get an apple tag or some sort of GPS device in case your cat decides to run free.
45. Take Your Cat to Work
The #1 reason that would make me want to stay at a job is being able to take my cat with me!
Some companies know that and have a few days a year where you can take your cat to work. Ask your manager if that is something your company is doing or something your company could potentially do!
How fun would it be to have your kitten on your lap during office hours?
46. Introduce Your Cat to Other People
Socializing a cat is a great way to expand your cat's boundaires and to get them comfortable when going on adventures.
I have socialized Mia to a point that she seeks out strangers for treats.
The best way to introduce your cat to new people is to give these new people your cat's favorite treats. As soon as someone enters your home, give them a bag of treats and let them satisfy your kitten.
In no time, your cat will create the association between new faces and treats.
47. Build DIY Food Toys
More than half of the US cats are overweight. There´s such big problem around it that I decided to make a video about it.
This is because cats are hunting and eating throughout the day and when indoors, they keep on doing so, but burning a lot less energy in the process.
Food toys are a great way to slow down our cats when eating and you don´t need to spend a ton of money to get some food toys, you can do them yourselve:
48. Plant Some Catgrass for Your Cat
Most cats like chomping on plants and one of the best ways to stop them from doing so is by offering them an alternative like cat grass.
Plant some cat grass and see it grow! A small project for you and a good alternative for your cat!
49. Make a Chair Hammock for Your Cat
I loved turning my high'top stools into cat hammocks.
Buy some hemp rope and try different patters in each stool.
I will create a video soon, but for now, I just drop the idea, more to come soon!
50. Go on a Hike with Your Cat
Walking your cat on a leash is the step #1, but once your cat is comfortable walking on a leash, you can start going on bigger adventures like hiking or going for a summit.
The same rules apply:
- Keep your cat comfortable at all times
- Take everything you think you'll need + a couple things more
- Be ready to stop and go back home
- Careful with predators (wild ones and domestic ones)
51. Make a DIY Scratcher for Your Cat
52. Play With Your Cat Using a Blanket
53. Get Your Cat to Chase You Around the House
54. Play With Your Cat Using a Laser Beam
55. Make a Hat with Your Cat´s Shedding
56. Get Your Cat to Play With Water
Getting a cat to play with water is the most fun! Once they start doing it they won't stop!
Take some toys and throw them inside a bucket of water. There are even mechanical fishes that will move and trigger hunting!
Here's my bengal cat Mia playing with water:
57. Exercise Your Kitten by Throwing Treats Away
58. Take Your Cat to the Beach
Taking a cat to the beach is like taking a cat to a massive litterbox!
They will scratch, run and explore!
Three notes of caution:
- Some cats might get scared by the sound of the waves
- Some cats might get sunburned. Apply some pet sunscreen on nose and ears.
- Staying hydrated is as important to cats as it is to people. Make sure your cat is drinking enough water!
59. Train Your Cat for Agility
60. Try Feeding Your Cat Raw Meat or Fish
I switched to a raw diet a while ago and I'm super happy with the change. If you are not comfortable doing a total switch, you can reward your cat sporadically with some meat (turkey and chicken are best) or fish (like salmon).
If you want to go beyond raw treats and want to switch your cat diet to raw meat, you can find all you need in this post about raw diet for cats.
61. Try to Sit Near the Fireplace With Your Cat
62. Show Your Cat the Snow
Stay wild, stay safe, see you outdoors!
Albert & Mia