Cat Enrichment While You're Away
Even shy cats get bored and lonely when left alone for an extended time and just like people they need social interaction and stimulating activities in addition to having their basic needs for food & water met. A daily visit from their cat sitter, or better yet, a twice daily visit, are bright spots in their day. Here are some ideas to enrich their time alone and a shout out to the clients I have learned them from ...thank you!
Hide Kitty Treats
Sweet Nikko, a low key tabby, has academic parents that are thoughtful about ways to keep him engaged when they travel. They asked that I hide a handful of treats around their home each visit so he could go on the hunt during his time alone. I would hide them before I would leave, behind furniture and in tight spots...encouraging Nikko to tap into his sense of smell to find the treats. The treats were always gone the next day. Brilliant and so simple...
Laura has so many great ideas, she wins as the best pet mom ever. Her home is a haven of pet pleasures. The small hand towel laid on the floor and covered with a layer of catnip is her cat's Olive favorite! She rolls in the catnip and then lays back and enjoy her belly rubs. Cat ecstasy! Refresh every few days.
A version of this for the more fastidious; use catnip spray on a towel and have your pet sitter give it a daily spritz.
Not every cat enjoys catnip; obviously this is only for the enjoyers!
Window Mounted Bird Feeder
This is a win/win. Happy birds, happy cats. There are many different window mounted bird feeders available although the one pictured I often see used successfully. They are usually made of clear plexiglass and mount to a window with suction cups. Even if the squirrels invade, it's still entertaining. The only downside is seeds and shells that fall below the feeder.
Got any tricks you use when you're away? Let us know at email@example.com!