Why Mental Stimulation Is Important for Cats

Mental stimulation is key to keeping your cat's mind and body healthy as well as keeping them out of trouble. At New Hope Animal Hospital, we can help you with tips to provide your cat with mental stimulation during your regular pet exams at our Durham, NC clinic. Here's a look at ways you can engage your cat's mind and keep them on their toes.


A Happy Cat is a Healthy Cat

Indoor cats live wonderful lives. But cats aren't that far away from their roots as a predator on top of the food chain. Giving them play opportunities, cat furniture for climbing, window seats so they can watch the world at large and even a catio (enclosed outdoor space) goes a long way towards stimulating your cat. When you give cat things and opportunities that safely mimic what their life would be in the wild, you're appealing to their inner nature and delivering satisfaction. 

Play Time and Mental Stimulation 

You'll notice that when you bring out a laser pointer or a stick toy, your cat becomes alert. Most cat toys are designed to stimulate their natural hunting instincts. Think of the humble catnip mouse toy and how even the laziest of cats will get excited to bat them around the house before losing them under the sofa. Stimulating a cat's instinct to hunt helps engage their mind and body, and letting them "kill" the toy satisfies their prey drive. This play results in a relaxed and contented cat.

It's Not Always About Play Time

Cats like to stalk their prey, but they don't have to go for a kill when being fed regular meals. Putting in a window shelf or keeping a window clear for your cat to hang out in gives your pet a "TV." Your cat can hang out in the window and watch the world at large while daydreaming about catching that bird or squirrel. This, too, will satisfy your cat’s need for mental stimulation.

Pet Exams in Durham, NC

At New Hope Animal Hospital, we have years of experience providing residents of Durham, NC, and the surrounding areas with reliable veterinary care. Regular pet exams help your cat live the highest possible quality of life. For more information on pet exams, mental stimulation, or to schedule an appointment, call us at (919) 490-2000.

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