Cats Need Playtime For Socialisation And Fitness

Cats have a natural instinct to run, jump, claw, and hunt, and having an indoor cat doesn’t eliminate those natural instincts. That’s why cat toys are a vital part of a cat’s socialisation and fitness. Cats can play with almost anything. Some enjoy store-bought toys like catnip balls and feather swishes, while others are happy unrolling a tube of toilet paper and shredding it all over the house. In fact, if you don’t provide your cat with some sort of entertainment, you’ll find that they can easily create their own fun using things around the house.

Sometimes this works out, like when you get one of those cute pictures of your cat peeking out from a brown paper bag. Other times, the form of fun they choose involves attacking the furniture and clawing it to shreds before you have a chance to stop it. With all of the toys available at pet shops, you should be able to find at least one or two toys that become your cat’s favourite.

Play Time Is for Cat Owners Too

Entertainment isn’t just for your cat. By playing regularly with your cat, you encourage socialisation but you also get to enjoy their fun antics. Playing also helps your cat bond with you and gives you an opportunity to get to know your cat’s personality. Kittens especially love to play, and kitten toys can distract them from damaging your furniture or trying to escape outside for entertainment.

Since you should enjoy play time as much as your cat, make sure you choose a variety of interactive toys. Provide your cat with toys that roll, squeak, jingle, and dangle. Cats like carrying toys, batting them back and forth, jumping on them to hear them squeak, and wrestling and attacking them like prey.

Mix Cat Food and Toys

The next time you’re out shopping for pet supplies online, remember to pick up a box of smaller cat food bites. These can be treats or your cat’s regular food. Certain toys are designed to be stuffed with treats or small pieces of food. These toys usually roll, and your cat is rewarded when they roll the toy just right and a bit of food pops out. Since cats are naturally curious, this type of toy is great during busy times when you don’t have a chance to interact with your cat or are going to be gone for a few hours and don’t want your cat to get bored. No matter which cat toys you choose, your cat will love the extra attention and time you spend playing together.

Cat Cafes: Unique Feline Focused Businesses in Japan

Every city has a go-to coffee shop or cafe where residents of the area can feel at home. These cafes tend to offer customers a relaxing atmosphere, delicious food and drink, and even free internet. These offerings are all well and good for the typical coffee shop customer, but what if you could go to a coffee shop that offered all of the above, plus the chance to visit with adorable felines? Japan is home to several Cat Cafes that offer just that.

Cat Cafes are small businesses that allow people to visit with the resident cats for a small fee. These cafes started popping up around 2006, and today there are about 79 Cat Cafes all over Japan. Generally, these establishments charge by the hour ranging from about $7 to $10 per hour, with fees increasing on weekends and holidays. In addition to cats, the cafes also offer visitors food and drink, computers, books, and video games.

The resident felines in the Cat Cafes are treated with great respect. Before and during their stay, visitors must follow a list of rules including washing their hands before and after playing with the cats, removing their shoes, and not taking pictures with a flash. Interestingly, some cafes do not let visitors pick up the cats. The only exception to this rule is if a kitty voluntarily decides to jump on a customer’s lap.

These cafes are not just an attraction for tourists to Japan, but are actually quite popular with locals too. Why are Cat Cafes so popular with the locals in Japan?

As of July 2011, the human population in Japan was estimated to be 126,475,664 people. Of this population, only about 13% of these Japanese households owned a cat, and about 5% of the total Japanese population had a pet cat. These low pet cat numbers are due to strict housing legislation that does not allow certain homeowners in Japan to have a pet. Specifically, single individuals between 20 and 30 years of age living in apartments or condominiums cannot own a pet. For this reason, few Japanese homes actually own a pet, which makes the idea of Cat Cafe very appealing to locals.

Cat Cafes offer tourists and locals in Japan the opportunity to spend quality time with friendly felines in a comfortable atmosphere. If you are a cat enthusiast travelling to Japan, be sure to stop in to one of these unique Cat Cafes for a once in a lifetime experience visiting with the local felines.

How To Shop For The Best Cat Condo House

If you have just recently brought a new cat into your home or you have finally realized that your cat needs a little place to call his own, then you are going to want to check into purchasing a cat condo house. With the cat house, your cat will have a little place that he can run and hide and sleep whenever he feels like it. He will be able to escape the dog and the kids and he will not be bothered by a human brushing him off of his spot all because the couch is suddenly “needed”. As you can start to imagine now, the life of an ordinary house cat can get a little stressful at times.

The first thing you will notice when you are shopping for a cat condo house is that there are many different options to pick from. You will find that there are small condos that consist of maybe one little room to hide in and then there are monster sized cat house that will have five or six rooms for your cat. The cat house that you pick will all depend on what you have room for, what you want your cat to have and also what you have the money for. There are ways to save money, such as building your own, but it will never look as nice as what you can buy. Another thing you can do to save money is to shop online. This is because companies are able to offer better deals when they do not have to worry about having all of the overhead expenses that a traditional in-town store would have.

When you are looking over your different cat house options, you will want to make sure that you are only shopping from companies that are known to give quality products for pets. If a company has a reputation for shoddy merchandise, the last thing you want to do is to have your little kitty crawling all through the condo and then it falls over or breaks apart. Even when sticking to preferred brands, there are still going to be more than enough cat condos to pick from. You will in fact, probably have a hard time selecting just the right one.

If you are unsure how well the cat condo house is going to work in your house, you could always start out with a small one. Then, if all goes well, you could upgrade your cat to an even fancier cat condo house. Since cat condos will always be around, you have plenty of time to make sure that you are getting just the right choice for your cat.

Living in Style – Cat Condos Shopping Tips

Furniture for cats is a huge market in the US. With many of America’s eighty million cats living exclusively within the safety of the indoors, owners literally furnish them with everything they need for a great feline life.

The term “cat furniture” covers a variety of products, from plush beds to sturdy “naked” shelves attached to one’s walls. In the middle of this wide spectrum, you can find fairly large constructions, usually several stories high (well, consider that terms in relation to cat height, please). These are known by various names, including trees, gyms and towers. In a category all of its own, one can find the cat house, also known as cat condo.

These condos are usually largish furniture, often made of wood. In many instances, they are mounted at the top of kitty trees, above ground level. Basically, cat condos are semi-closed mini-spaces, where your cat can enjoy the perceived safety of a small cave.

Many cats find this arrangement extremely appealing and not because of the decor either. You see, our domestic felines retain their wild instincts which send them upwards, towards the safety of a hidden enclosure, preferably up in the tree branches, or, in the case of cat furniture, at the top level of a cat tree.

The common setup of a cat condo simply meets your cat’s need for a secret little cave, all its own, where it can feel secure and protected. A good cat condo should meet the following criteria to please most cats:

1. It should be solid and stable – One thing your cat would hate is a wobbly house. This should be a house, not a rocking chair.

2. The internal space should be large enough to allow the cat to comfortably stand inside, turn around and snooze in a variety of positions.

3. Height is a bonus – high above ground feels safer and is usually better. The exception to this rule may be with older cats and those suffering from arthritis. Depending on the cat’s condition, you may consider adding pet stairs that lead up to the condo.

4. It should be easy to access and to leave – this is particularly true in multi-cat households, where your cat may need to have clear lines of vision as well as accessible escape routes to deal with an oncoming adversary.

You may note that design and decor are not listed among the criteria for felines. They certainly may be relevant when it comes to the owners. Cat trees and cat houses are where cat furniture designers really go wild. Anything from semi-natural looking trees to medieval castles and Victorian terrace houses – any fantasy can come true, when it comes to feline housing arrangements.

If you’re not happy with existing models, why stop there? Some companies offer a unique service where you can design your own cat house from their basic building units, while other artisans will be happy to cooperate with you and work on that one-of-a-kind cat condo of your dreams.

Of course, that also means the sky is the limit in terms of pricing. Expect to pay several dozens of dollars even for the more basic mass-produced models, and hundreds, or even thousands, of dollars to the larger or more uniquely designed ones.

Cat Furniture – The Indispensable Element in a Cat Lover’s Home

Cat furniture? The very term may be puzzling for some people. Why on earth would you need a sofa, a chair or a table for your kitty?

However, among cat lovers, it has a become common enough phrase. In fact, the concept has gained in popularity, with more people shopping for a cat tree, a cat bed and even cat condos. Not to mention scratching posts, now considered a mandatory item in the cat owner’s household.

Why More Cat Furniture?

A major shift in responsible cat care has taken place over the past few decades: more cats than ever spend their entire life living indoors only. These felines never leave the comfort of their homes, unless traveling to the veterinary clinic in a secure cat carrier. And “comfort of their homes” is more than just a figure of speech in this case.

Raising cats indoors-only has brought on changes relating to cat nutrition, vet care, entertainment and more. By the same token, owners invest more than ever in various items of furniture, to create “purrfect” environments for what they consider to be their “furbabies”.

So, why cat furniture for the indoors-only cat household? Let’s review the two main advantages of cat furniture.

Adding Space

When we look at a room and try to estimate its size, we tend to look at its width and length, thus measuring its floor space.

Things look different from a feline perspective: you can actually make a room larger, if you take into account the room’s height and make good use of vertical space.

The taller units can do just that, adding more surfaces on various levels, in effect creating space where none existed before.

Exercise

Living indoors is safe and comfortable. It also means a lack of the intense stimuli of outdoors life; and the absence of the intense physical activity associated with having to hunt for food.

Moreover, with owners being away from home for long hours, many kitties simply get bored. The result? Sleeping more, getting less exercise and becoming susceptible to weight gain.

This is where a sturdy, complex set of “feline gyms”, perhaps decorated with some hanging cat toys, can help. Jumping up, running across beams, climbing, or simply stretching, can all help to keep a cat more active and thus healthier.

Even More Benefits

It doesn’t end with exercise and added space. Cat furniture can help in creating a unique environment for your cat, where she may feel safer. Being out of reach of small children, or simply having a nest up on her cat tree, can all add to a cat’s sense of security.

These pieces can even be an aesthetic addition to your household. A practical and decorative statement which says loud and clear: cats are part of our family.

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How and Where to Buy Quality Cat Food at the Best Price

Once you are aware of what’s available at the four basic types of businesses selling cat food, you will be equipped with all the knowledge you need to locate food that best meets your cat’s unique needs. Combine that with our smart tips on getting bargains, and you’ll be ready to go shopping.

Most cat owners will have access to the following four sources of cat food: veterinarian offices, pet supply shops, natural food stores, and your traditional grocery store. Let’s look at what’s available at each of these so you will be aware of all your options.

1. Veterinarian Offices

Your veterinarian carries a variety of food formulated to help pets with particular health problems such as kidney disease or arthritis. For example, the kidney diet food might be lower in protein and the arthritis food may contain minerals that benefit a cat’s joints. If your cat’s vet does prescribe one of these special cat foods, you will have to purchase it from them or another vet. These special products are sold exclusively through veterinarian practices.

If you do find yourself needing this special food, be sure to get on the phone and shop around for the best price from all the local veterinarian offices. You don’t need an actual prescription to buy it and are free to get it wherever it’s available. You may find a significantly better price at another local practice. Although this “prescription” food tends to be on the expensive side, the hope is that this diet will help your cat lead a long, healthy, happy life.

2. Pet Supply Shops

This is where you will find the greatest variety of foods for your cat. They will have the broadest range of prices and types. You will likely find some rather generic, and less expensive food, along with quite exotic and pricey options that almost sound appealing enough for your own dinner plate.

Just as people may have food sensitivities, so do some cats. Here you’ll find unique products that are grain-free, gluten-free, all meat, etc. They are formulated to meet these individual needs. If your cat is not thriving or seems to be having digestive issues, check with your vet and see if one of these special diets might be worth trying out.

Buying cans by the case or large bags of dry food will usually get you a decent discount and if they have a Customer Loyalty Card, you can eventually earn additional price breaks or even free items. In the unlikely event that you don’t spot the particular food you want, these stores will often be happy to handle your special order if it’s available from one of their many suppliers. This seems to be especially true of the smaller, non-chain store businesses.

As a side note, pet supply shops, brick and mortar or online, will be your best source for all the extra goodies you’ll want to spoil your cat with. Furry mice, cozy beds, litter boxes of all sizes, special treats and grooming tools will all be found here in abundance.

3. Natural Food Stores

Health food stores will usually carry a relatively small selection of cat food but it will nearly always be on the upper end of the quality scale. These manufacturers of cat food emphasize whole, natural, quality ingredients. Here’s an example from a popular brand: chicken, chicken broth, mackerel, ocean fish, chicken liver, and wheat germ. Overall, they avoid cheap filler ingredients, by-products, artificial flavors, artificial colors, preservativesand sugar. Some of the ingredients may even be organic, meaning they are grown without toxic chemicals.

If your want dry cat food, it is worth looking in both the pet food and the bulk sections of the store to see if they carry bulk dry cat food. It may be cheaper than the pre- packaged and you will only need to buy what you will use in a week or two, so it should keep nice and fresh. Check to see if you can order your cat food here by the case and get a savings this way. Some natural food coops even allow you to order by the case and pay just a small percentage over wholesale if you are a member.

Cat food from a natural foods store will be on the more expensive side, sometimes two or even three times the cost of others. Buying this level of quality may very well be worth it to you, but be sure to read the ingredients on the can or bag to ensure that you are in fact getting the quality ingredients you are expecting.

4. Traditional Grocery Stores

This is the cat food that is most familiar to everyone. The brand names are widely advertised and the food is found everywhere from quick-stop shops to supermarkets and the big warehouse stores. The bad news is, with few exceptions, this food is in the medium to lower end of the quality spectrum. The good news is, it’s the least expensive.

So, how does one handle this issue of wanting quality but needing affordability? Well you simply start reading labels and then buy the best the store has to offer in your price range.

Here’s how.

a) Pick the products you want to compare.
b) Read the first four or five ingredients of each.
c) Is more than one of these ingredients by-products, cheap filler, or other questionable substances?
d) Is the first or second ingredient a form of by-products?

If “yes” is the answer to either c or d above, forget that product and keep looking.

(Note: The order in which ingredients are listed reflects the relative amount present in that product. They are listed from greatest to least.)

Here’s a real world example comparing two varieties from a line of canned cat food that is the “house brand” at a major supermarket. All varieties in this line were on sale for about 45 cents each so a quality product, if found, would be worth stocking up on.

Variety #1, Country Style Chicken Dinner

Ingredients: meat by-products, water, chicken, poultry by-products, animal digest

Variety #2, Ocean Fish and Rice Entree

Ingredients: water, ocean fish, chicken, meat by-products, liver

We can see variety #1 has only one quality ingredient out of the first five! This is a particularly bad selection.On the other hand, variety #2 has only a single undesirable ingredient and that’s listed fourth, not first or second, making this the clear winner and worth buying. Once you do your research, make a note of the results and next time you’ll know exactly what to buy. Use this technique whenever you are choosing a new cat food, no matter where you shop and the process will be a breeze.

Shopping For a Cat Tower? Consider These Things When You Shop

Cats, like any pet, require love, attention and money. Food, vet visits and grooming supplies are essential, but so are toys and play areas for your feline friend. There are many toys out there that may entertain them, and when researching possible toys, be sure to include a cat tower on your list. Cat towers are versatile structures that can provide hours of entertainment, keeping you both happy.

When researching these products, there are a few things to consider. First of course is the type of cat you have. If you find your cat scaling countertops, sinks and shelves or hiding in boxes, bags or other small crevices, chances are, your cat would love one. A cat tower will give your pet the illusion and feeling they are climbing the walls and hiding from predators without involving any personal property which shouldn’t be played with. If you find your cat lounging in the sun near a window sill, they might like one as well. Cat towers are higher up off the ground, and if placed in front of a window, can provide pets with a sun-bathing area as well as something to play with if they happen to get the urge. Cats with scratching urges, both clawed and declawed, would also like one as it would give them a post to meet their scratching urges.

Second, look at the space you have available for a large piece of furniture like this. The great thing about cat towers is they come in all shapes and sizes for every living arrangement. If you have a smaller space, think about going tall and narrow. If you have ample space, you can spread out a little. Along with the space you have available, also think about the funds you have available to spend. Units can vary in price from under $50 to a couple hundred dollars. You will also want to consider the quality of materials used. Reading reviews of a specific company’s cat towers is a good place to start as well as asking fellow cat lovers where they purchased theirs. By asking friends, you may also be able to check out what an assembled unit looks like, which will give you a good idea of the quality.

Finally, when looking for a cat tower, make sure it fits in well with your already-established decor. Pet furniture is evolving with current d├ęcor trends, so chances are, you will be able to find one that does not stick out like a sore thumb in whichever room you choose to place it.

Investing in a cat tower is a good idea for both you and your cat, and taking into consideration the proper factors beforehand can help make the shopping experience more enjoyable and far less stressful.

How to Care For Your Cats

Cats make good pets,and their needs are few. Remember, your feline pet is part of your family, and should be treated as such. However, do not expect them to toe the party line. Cats are independent creatures. They like to come and go as they please, without let or hindrance!

Your Pet’s Basic Needs.

1)Food
2)Water
3)A comfortable place to sleep.
4)Toilet tray for starters.
5)Ideally, a cat flap.

Which Food?

The choice is between dry food or canned food. Dry food is convenient, cats seem to like the flavour and to be able to graze. Canned food is moist and the content more like what cats eat in the wild. A bit of both is recommended. Make sure fresh water is available to your pet at all times. READ the LABELS to ensure your cat is getting quality nutrition.

Cat’s Poos and Snooze

Your moggy will need a LITTER tray as initially it will have to be kept indoors. Pet shops have a range of litter, including one that is odour – free. Later, a cat- flap is recommended as it will save work for you. Cats need a COSY bed, though they may end up sleeping on your pillow.! A bed with a raised border keeps them warm and feeling safe. Pet SHOPS have a great variety for you to choose from.

Cat’s Health and Insurance

Your feline will be part of the family for many years. Ensuring proper nutrition will keep him healthy. He will have minor ailments, and perhaps major skirmishes with other cats! It is wise to have Pet Insurance in place. Shop around for the best deal in Pet Insurance. Your vet’s practice should be able to advise you

Your Pet Will Thank You For Its Cat Supplies

Cat Supplies come in many different shapes, sizes, and forms, ranging from toys to pouches of food to very elaborate and fancy looking Scratching Posts.

Different traders will not necessarily have on display similar stock so it is worth shopping around for what you need for your pet and buy what you feel would suit your newest member of the family. Kittens are like children and love to play so what do you do? You scour the market for suitable toys to keep the kittens mind active, but they have a tendency to soon get bored with these toys and find things that they want to play with.

There has been a noticeable increase of traders offering cat supplies so it would be worth your while to shop around. New items often appear on the shelves in the pet area of Supermarkets so the need to find what is right for your cat has been made easier for some people and difficult for others which all depends on how much you want to spoil your cat. It is worth remembering how fast a cat grows in comparison to us so look and listen to your cat’s needs before diving into the pet section of any store. Remember the vast selection that there is on offer to you. One of the most expensive items can be Scratching Posts but it can be a worthwhile investment.

In major Supermarkets the cat supplies section has grown rapidly over the last 5 to 10 years and it is now not unusual to find one side of a complete aisle dedicated to cats and the other side to dogs. Among the options beside the whole array of food you can get for your cat, there are also treats of varying choices from milk buttons to some treats containing catnip. It is advisable to check these out and purchase a ‘token sample’ to see if your cat enjoys them. Some treats on offer are particularly good for the cat’s teeth and it can be a revelation to watch your cat’s reaction when you first present them with such goodies.

As with most things these days cat supplies will forever change with ‘new’ things being introduced and ‘old’ things being taken off the shelves so you will find yourself ‘spoilt for choice’. It is important as a cat owner that you get to know this family member as they too have particular likes and dislikes. If you are ever unsure about products you see among the choices, feel free to ask especially in a Pet Store or Supermarket. People love to talk about cats and it is always worthwhile approaching other cat owners to pick up a few tips about cat supplies. There is so much in the way of information and advise out there that by taking time out to ‘research’ either on line or by word of mouth you will find yourself directed to the right sort of cat supplies to suit you and your cat’s needs.

Why Buy Cat Furniture From An Online Specialty Store Verses The Big Box Stores?

Why should you buy a cat tree from an online specialty store, when you could get a similar model from your local department store and save a few dollars? That is a great question. Let’s see if we can figure out why there’s a difference in price.

Specialty indicates that there is excess knowledge about the product, and this holds true for the online specialty stores that carry cat furniture. Cat trees and condos come in many shapes, colors, sizes and brands. Some are custom made to your specification. The majority of custom cat furniture is made in the USA and made to order. They are not sitting in a warehouse by the hundreds waiting to be purchased, they are built as they are ordered. The cat trees found in department stores are pre-made and most have traveled across the ocean in a container ship. It is not uncommon for a ship to take a month or more to complete the journey from the port of shipment to the port of destination. With that being said, there is a good chance that the cat trees have been exposed to moisture during their journey. Since most are unassembled and merely boxed, some parts can be affected by moisture. The base being the most important part of any piece of cat furniture must be perfectly flat to prevent a rocking sensation when your cat runs or jumps on the tree. The cat trees and condos that you find in department stores are more often than not imported items.

Cat furniture, trees and condos purchased online could possibly be imported as well. How can you tell? Simple, call the online store and ask. While you’re speaking with the online store ask specifics about the item. Online stores have extensive knowledge regarding the product they sell. Ask specific questions in your local big box store about the item and you’ll get a blank stare. Ask the online store about their policy on receiving a defective item and most all of them will stand behind their product. The specialty stores have manufacturing knowledge about the different brands that they carry, what materials are used to build the item, how long can you expect it to last and will it stand up to multiple cats. If you order today when can you expect to receive it? How will it be delivered? Do you have to be home for delivery? Are any toxic materials used in the manufacturing process? Can you return it if your cat doesn’t like it? These are all important questions which any competent online specialty store should be able to answer.

Ordering online saves you from driving to one or more department stores, battling traffic, driving around looking for a parking place, as well as the cost of gasoline to make the purchase. When purchasing cat furniture online, you’ll also avoid encountering busy clerks that give you ‘the look’ when you start asking questions.

While even the online stores have business hours where you can reach someone on the phone, most have toll free phone numbers and all have a form of email contact.

Sit in the comfort of your home (in your jammies if you want to), call the toll free number and ask everything you ever wanted to know about cat furniture but were afraid to ask. If you can’t get to the phone to call during their business hours, use their ‘contact us’ email to ask your questions. Take the hustle and bustle out of shopping and shop right in the comfort of your own home, shop with confidence online by watching for secure websites that don’t compromise you’re personal and credit card information.

The Holiday season is a pretty busy time for department stores as well as online specialty stores, if your call goes into a message center, leave your name and phone number along with a brief description of the reason for the call and I promise that your call will be returned. The online stores appreciate your business and will provide you with a wealth of information, outstanding service and best of all, the guidance to help you decide which cat tree will work best for your kitty(s). Their knowledge about their products is why they are considered a specialty store. Their service is unbeatable.

Save yourself the gas, driving aggravation, and the hassle of department store shopping. Have a look at the online cat furniture stores at your convenience and then decide if the few dollars difference isn’t worth every cent.