Great Ways to Make Your Cat Healthy and Happy - PetHelpful - By fellow animal lovers and experts
Updated date:

Great Ways to Make Your Cat Healthy and Happy

David has had a variety of life experiences which he loves to share with his readers.

Cat Friends

My two cats sharing a spot on a cat tower.

My two cats sharing a spot on a cat tower.

The Happiness of Cats

For the most part, cats are able to survive and live their lives without humans—but they truly seem happy when in our company. So it's up to us to make sure our furry friends stay happy and healthy.

This article will cover some great ways to make your cats happy:

  • The Basic Necessities
  • Toys
  • Beds and Cat Towers
  • Companionship

Note: This article is dedicated to the first two cats I ever had; Squeak and Terra. Writing this has given me the opportunity to show them off, as they are the inspiration behind it. I also ended up getting a third cat, which I named Baget.

A Cat's Basic Needs

To start off with, you need to always ensure to provide the basic necessities to your cats so they are always content in their environment. While this may seem easy enough to do, you should take care in how you satisfy their basic necessities:

  • Food: Providing dry and wet food for your cat is a good idea. Both foods provide benefits to your cat, and your cat will like having both. Wet food should be given once a day, while dry food can always be set out for your cat. If you see your cat gaining weight, then don't provide dry food all the time. If your cat is active this shouldn't be an issue. You can give them treats, and even "people" food once in awhile, but not too often. Cats love to eat what people eat.
  • Water: You should leave water out for your cats at all times. Ensure you keep the dishes clean. They can get gross after awhile. Even though your cat may want it, don't give them milk. It can make them sick. Instead, use milk-like drinks offered in pet stores.
  • Litter Box: If your cats are indoor cats, or if you want to offer an alternative to them, then ensure you keep a tidy litter box. It should be cleaned out 1-2 times a day, with the litter changed once every few months. Cat's don't like going in a dirty box, and it won't make them happy at all. Keep some air freshener close by!

Toys for Your Cat

Toys are a great way to entertain your cat and to keep them happy. Cats like to play to simulate that they are attacking and killing something. If you don't play with your cats, in time they get bored and will find other ways to entertain themselves which could be bad for your home. As long as I have had my cats, they don't get into things they aren't supposed to since I keep them entertained with various toys. There are a few types of toys to consider:

  • Interactive Toys: These are toys that you use to play with your cat. It could be a stick with a string tied at the end of it, a jingling ball you toss, and so on. These are available in most stores. Cats love to interact with their owners, so this will keep your cats plenty happy.
  • Non-interactive Toys: These toys allow your cat to play even when you aren't around. Again, it could be a jingling ball, but can be a post with a spring that has a ball that they can bat at, or a device that has a spinning ball inside of it.
  • Scratching Posts: While not much of a toy, it allows your cats to claw and scratch. When they are hyper, they tend to want to do this a lot. So give them something to claw other than your furniture.
  • Catnip: This is something fun to give your cats to get them riled up. Cats love catnip. They sniff at it, roll in it, and eat it. They will go crazy over it. Just ensure you give some in moderation and don't overload them with it too much.
  • Brushes: Your cats may consider a brush a toy, and may like the feel of it on their body. But it's also good to keep your cat groomed. Depending on your cat, you may have some that love it more than anything, or absolutely hate it.
  • Free Toys: These are things found around your own house. String, straws, or a paper bag. Cats sometimes love the free things more than the things you pay for!

Cat Playing with a Straw

Cat Toys You Can Find in Your Own Home

Most of these items are already in your own home, and can often times provide more entertainment for your cat than toys you buy in a store.

 

 

 

String

Straw

Blanket

Laser Pointer

Plastic Ring

Paper

Feather

Bag (Paper or Plastic)

Twist Ties

Cat Beds and Towers

Cats are known for making anything their bed. Cats can practically sleep anywhere. But if you want them to avoid certain pieces of furniture, and be comfortable where they are sleeping, then you want to give them the best. So if you want to keep your cat happy, consider the following when determining where they should sleep:

  • Cat Beds: Cat beds can be found almost anywhere, in all shapes and sizes. But just because you buy something for your cat it doesn't mean that they will want to use it. So you may have to try out a few beds before you find one your cat likes.
  • Hiding Spots: When your cats are feeling sick they like to find a nice hiding spot so they can try to recover from it. Cats don't like to show when they are in pain, but they show it by hiding away. You can make your cat happy by giving them a place for this, recognizing that they are in pain, and taking them to the vet.
  • Cat Towers: Cat towers are all-purpose homes for your feline friends. They provide a place to play, scratch, and sleep. My cats have been at their happiest ever since I purchased a cat tower. Though, the dangers is that eventually they get torn apart, and you are always tempted to buy a bigger and nicer one for your cats. That isn't necessarily a bad thing. It allows you to enjoy your cats at play.

Cat Friends

These two cats hated one another when they first met, now they are close friends.

These two cats hated one another when they first met, now they are close friends.

Companionship for Cats

Cats need companionship. They don't express it as a person or dog would, but they do need it. There are three types of companionship you can provide for your cats to keep them happy:

  • Human: Companionship with a person is usually wanted by a cat. They respond when you come home after a long absence and immediately want attention. Not all cats want this kind of attention. Of my two cats, one craves attention, while the other doesn't want the attention that much. So keep that in mind.
  • Other Cats: For the most part having a household with more than one cat is ideal. While a cat may be fine with living alone, their happiness grows when they have another cat in the same home. You have to introduce new cats to the household very carefully. They will sometimes get mad at one another, but soon after they will be licking each other on the face.
  • Other Animals: Cats don't mind having other animals in the house either. Dogs, birds, ferrets, etc. Even if dogs and cats are natural enemies, those living under the same roof learn to like and in time love one another.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.

© 2013 David Livermore

Comments

David Livermore (author) from Bakersfield, California, United States on August 21, 2018:

I'm really sorry to hear that. I have gone through that myself and know how hard it is.

You doing everything right. You are searching for her. You may want to go out further than a mile, since cats are known to travel. You can post posters in your neighborhood, or post something on the app "Nextdoor", which people have done before.

I'm sorry to say you may have to accept the possibility she passed away. When cats are in pain they sometimes find a secluded spot to be in. I know it's heartbreaking and I'm sorry to say that, but I want you to be prepared. I hope she returns though.

Natalie Binks on August 21, 2018:

Please help with advice on my baby girl who has just disappeared! She is 14 years old and has NEVER strayed. She is not adventurous but does like to sit in the sun under the pergola. Her personality has deemed her as a diva, hand fed, likes her throne (comfy chair), not much into bringing home gifts anymore just likes to sit pretty and be a diva. Im at a loss, as of today its been 3 days now and she is gone, no where on our property and not within a one mile radius (from what I can tell)... please give me your thoughts and ideas...what do i do next????

David Livermore (author) from Bakersfield, California, United States on March 06, 2014:

Thank you very much. I do my best to keep my cats happy.

FlourishAnyway from USA on March 06, 2014:

What beautiful cats you have! You obviously make them very happy.

David Livermore (author) from Bakersfield, California, United States on March 25, 2013:

Thanks so much! I wish I could rescue all the cats I could find, but unfortunately that's not possible.

Deb Welch on March 25, 2013:

Good Hub. My cat has all the extras and we are waiting to move into a better place where she & I can find more joy to life. Love the videos, great information, voted - useful, beautiful and interesting. I watched a dirty white&black very vocal cat eat dry food outside from a flat box in a video. Hopefully the cat was to be rescued.

PDXBuys from Oregon on March 24, 2013:

Great hub. My cat loves chasing the red dot from my laser pointer. But it must be frustrating for her that she can never catch it!

vibesites from United States on March 18, 2013:

Awwww... lucky and pampered cats you have David. Though they may not look like it, I'm sure they're purrrfectly happy. Thanks for the informative hub! Voted up and awesome. :)

torrilynn on March 06, 2013:

Hi David,

thanks for this hub. I never knew that it

took so much to make your cat happy.

thanks again for the great info.

Voted up