Cats have been domesticated for thousands of years. They’re used as working animals to help control mice and rats that are urban and farm pests. For felines, the great outdoors are anything but superb. Whether they live in the countryside, in the city, or the suburbs, outdoor cats can face many risks. They’re exposed to diseases, most of which are fatal. Even with the dangers, you need to understand that cats are natural hunters and get bored quickly – they tend to get curious. This can cause problems, like when they decide to swing with your drapes to get a better view outside. Understanding your cat’s basic needs is easy. Once you achieve this, you can raise a healthy cat and live together in harmony. Here are ways to get you going.
1. Set a Bird Viewing Station
There’s a reason why domesticated felines kill birds – these animals are the natural prey of their ancestors. According to the folks at LeluandBobo.com, even well-fed cats still have the wildcat’s natural attraction to birds. You can still give way to that attraction by setting up a bird viewing station indoors. You only need to install a bird feeder outside the window and create a window perch for your cat. Your feline will enjoy hours of viewing pleasure, and the birds outside will be safe. Consider placing feeders and baths close to windows to help reduce bird-window strikes, which is another source of bird mortality.
2. Add Some Toys
More toys equal a happy cat. You should consider getting your cat toys. There can be various toys for chasing, toys for battling around, and toys for interactive play. However, remember that some of those toys need to have catnip in them. However, not all cats enjoy the scented herb, but those who do find it blissful. If your feline is a catnip lover, indulge him regularly. You can also rub fresh catnip on cat scratching posts or place it into toys. The most enjoyable toys for you and your cat are interactive toys. As a cat lover, ensure you have these toys as they’ll keep your feline happy and healthy.
3. Visit the Vet
Cats can catch different illnesses inside and outside the house. It’s vital to take your cat to the vet at least two to three times a year for a checkup. Additionally, your feline should be neutered to prevent unwanted babies. This also reduces the risks of feline HIV. In some countries, it’s now mandatory to neuter your kitty to keep the cat population controlled. During your visit to the vet, remember to ask for flea treatment and regular worming. This is especially important if your cat spends plenty of time outdoors. A cat gets uncomfortable and unhappy if they have to scratch all the time.
4. Be Careful when Changing the Routine
“Felines love routine, and it can be challenging for them if you change it abruptly,” explains Regina Hall-Jones, a feline professor and Member of the Pet Professional Guild, Australia. If possible, make small changes to their routine repeatedly until the new routine is what they expect. For instance, if you keep your feline inside at night, carefully increase the duration, they stay indoors until they can no longer go outdoors. “You need to be consistent. Routine is great with cats, and it helps them feel secure,” adds Hall.
5. Keep Your Cat’s Environment Clean
Your feline has no other choice but to be clean. Being odor-free is required to hunt and survive. Also, felines are very smell-sensitive and require a clean environment to thrive. Avoid washing your cat. Felines can keep clean and will engage in a long routine to be odor-free. You only need to wash your cat if it’s filthy or came in contact with something toxic which cannot be ingested. Finally, keep the litter box fresh and lovely. Felines bury their poop to avoid detection. They expect a clean litter and will automatically use something else if it doesn’t fit their standards.
6. Go Out for Walks
This might sound strange. However, did you know it’s possible to train your feline to walk on a leash? Yes. If you must let your kitty outdoors, this is the best way to do it. However, this only works when you start training your cat when it’s a kitten. Even though older cats can learn, it takes time. A good tip is to get your feline used to wearing a harness for a short duration of time indoors. Over time, move on to attaching the leash.
Remember to love and show affection to your cat. Simple and easy! If you love your cat, it can be the best tool to keep it happy. Unlike their ancestors, domesticated cats love human attention. Pay attention to your cat! Using a combination of one or all the tips above will create a solid bond between you and your feline. You’ll be surprised at how much your relationship will change.