cat playing with toy banana.

Cats are sometimes seen as less playful than dogs, but our feline friends love bonding through play just as much as our canine ones do. Play is both an indicator and promoter of a cat’s wellbeing, as researchers state in a 2023 paper published by the Cambridge University Press’s Animal Welfare journal.

A cat that loves to play is a cat that’s been well fed and cared for, with plenty of energy to focus on playful activities. And play, in turn, can help reduce problem behaviors, and strengthen the human-animal bond. 

At the Sacramento Cat Hospital, our team has a few suggestions for helping you and your feline friend tap into the benefits of cat playtime.

Enrichment Activities for Cats 

Cats like to play by themselves, with other felines, and with their human counterparts. 

Here are our favorite indoor cat games to play with your kitty: 

  • Hide and Seek: Cats are natural hunters, which means a game of hide and seek is always a hit. Hide a few favorite toys or treats throughout your home. If you want to join in the fun, hide yourself along with a handful of treats and reward your kitty each time she finds you. 
  • Laser Pointer Mazes: This classic game helps engage your kitty’s hunting instincts—without causing your cat to gift you a dead mouse as a result of her play. Use a laser pointer to create patterns on the floor or walls. Your kitty will chase the moving light, leaping and pouncing as she tries to catch it.
  • Bubble Chase: Grab some non-toxic bubbles and blow them for your kitty. Watch as she bats at the bubbles with her paws, swiping and twirling in her efforts to pop them.
  • Feather Wand Course: Create a feather wand with supplies from your local craft store. Then, build an obstacle course with discarded boxes, pillows, and play tunnels. Drag your DIY cat toy—the feather wand—through the obstacle course. Your kitty will get a good chase and a good workout in! 
  • Agility Challenges: Cats are some of the most agile animals we know. In recent years, cat parents have discovered the joys of cat agility courses and competitions. That’s right, your kitty can leap, climb, and soar through obstacle courses just like a dog—and probably much better. See if there’s a cat agility program to join near you or build a course at home.

Of course, even though you might want to spend all day playing with Kitty, you probably have other things to do. This is where solo toys come in. 

Interactive Cat Toys for Solo Play

Interactive toys are a perfect way to provide mental stimulation for cats when you’re busy or away. 

Our favorite types of interactive toys provide stimulating play for cats, keeping cats entertained no matter what:

  • Catnip Toys: Whether it’s a sock filled with catnip or a catnip toy from the store, cats love catnip. They can spend hours playing with a toy filled with their favorite plant on earth.
  • Automatic Laser Toy: Consider purchasing an automatic laser for days when you have to spend a lot of time at work. You can find ones that are activated by your kitty’s movement and shut off after 10 minutes of play. 
  • Puzzle Treat Dispensers: What’s better than an interactive toy that rewards your cat with a treat? Nothing, that’s what. Amazon has dozens of these types of toys. Browse the offerings and pick the one that fits your cat’s purr-sonality the most. 
  • Cat Scratch Exercise Wheel: Get your kitty plenty of exercise while tapping into her need to scratch with a cat scratch exercise wheel. It’s like a hamster wheel, but for cats. 

With a plethora of bonding toys and solo activities, you’ll encourage playful cat behavior from your kitty. She’ll never be bored again. 

Checking Your Cattitude

If your feline family member seems discontent or agitated despite the enrichment activities you provide, bring her to the vet for a wellness visit. There could be an underlying issue we can help you and your kitty resolve. Call us at (916) 488-4161 or request an appointment online today.