How to Keep Your Cat Entertained: Fun Cat DIY Toys and Games – June 2024

Cats can get bored easily. As a cat owner, you know it’s important to keep your cat entertained. When cats are bored, they can scratch your valuable furniture or meow a lot.

The good news is that you can make your cat toys and games at home to keep your cats entertained! In this article, we’ll learn about fun, cheap cat entertainment ideas to make cat DIY toys and homemade cat games that will keep your cat entertained.

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Why it’s Important to Entertain your Cat

Basic Instincts of Cats and their Activity

Cats are natural hunters. They have pointy eyes, noses and ears which they use when hunting. They enjoy approaches, catching and chasing things around them, and investigating. Awareness of these instincts helps in understanding how to keep the cat occupied in a way that does not interfere with their innate behaviors.

Engaging your cat in activities that mimic their hunting instincts serves to ensure that they are mentally as well as physically active, and not bored and unhealthy.

fun cat games

Mental and Physical Stimulation

It is important to keep the cat both mentally and physically engaged at all times to enhance their overall wellbeing. Playing with your kitty will also enhance your friendship with them. Ensure that you take them for exercise, so that they do not become overweight. You can also keep their mind stimulated, by engaging them with puzzles or interactive cat toys. 

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Indications that the Cat is getting Bored

This is another sign that if your cat is bored, he will become angry at you even for no reason. Some of the behavioral changes that may indicate that a cat is bored may include over grooming, excessive eating, excessive sleeping, scratching of furniture, biting, aggression towards people or other pets, excessive meowing or attention-seeking. If you experience these symptoms, consult a  vet.

Cat DIY Toys for Indoor Play 

Making your affordable cat DIY toys at home is a great way to keep your cat entertained without spending a lot of money. Here are some easy ideas to make the best DIY cat toys:

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Cardboard Boxes and Paper Bags

Creating Hiding Spots and Obstacle Courses

Cats enjoy playing hide and seek, crawling and getting into tiny spaces. Use furniture and other household items such as cardboard boxes and paper bags to create hiding places and trails. It is possible to cut them on the sides for access but make sure that the holes are of different sizes. 

Cat DIY Puzzle Feeders 

Take a cardboard box and cut out several holes of different shapes and sizes to create a puzzle feeder for the cat. Slice the box with openings on the sides and then place the cat’s favorite tidbits or dry kibble in it.

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They will need to use their paws or move the box to release the treats themselves to be able to eat them. This helps in stimulating their brain and also gives a reward in return. Paper bags can also be torn and folded to create hiding places which contain treats for the cat to look for.

cat entertainment ideas

Homemade Wand Toys

Using Feathers, Strings, and Other Materials 

Wand toys are the most favorite toys for the cats because they mimic real prey. Wand toys should be made by attaching feathers, strings, ribbons, or fabric scraps to the end of a stick or rod. Wave the toy in front of your cat and give it to them as if it is a real mouse. Your cat will surely enjoy playing with it.

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Making the Toy Move and Surprise 

To make the wand toy even more exciting, make it move in unpredictable ways. Tie a bell or crinkly material to the end to make interesting sounds. Change the speed, height, and direction of the toy to keep your cat guessing and engaged.

DIY Treat Dispensers

Using Household Items 

Turn everyday household items into treat dispensers for your cat. For example, use a plastic bottle with holes poked in it, a muffin tin with treats in the cups, or a toilet paper roll filled with treats and the ends folded shut. Your cat will have to figure out how to get the treats out.

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Making Cats Work for their Treats 

Make your DIY treat dispenser more challenging by changing the size of the holes, using different textures or materials, or adding obstacles. This will make your cat use their paws, nose, and problem-solving skills to get the treats out, keeping them mentally and physically active.

Fun Cat Games for Interactive Play 

Playing creative cat games with your cat is another great way to keep them entertained. Here are some cat playtime ideas:

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Laser Pointers and Flashlights

Laser pointers and flashlights can be used as cat toys that get them chasing and pouncing like a hunter. However, it’s important to be safe. Never shine the light directly into your cat’s eyes because it can hurt them. Always point the light at the ground or a wall. At the end of the game, give your cat a real treat or toy to “catch” so they feel satisfied.

Cats love to chase and pounce on moving objects. Use the laser pointer or flashlight to make a moving light for your cat to chase. Move the light in unpredictable patterns to get them engaged. This gives your cat physical exercise and mental stimulation.

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Hide-and-Seek

Hide-and-seek is a classic game that cats love. Make hiding spots around your home using furniture, blankets, or boxes. Hide yourself or your cat’s favorite treats and let them search for you. You can also hide treats in different spots to get your cat exploring.

Hide-and-seek gets your cat moving around and exploring different areas of your home. Make the game more difficult by changing hiding spots or using different treats. This game strengthens your bond, while keeping your cat entertained.

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Indoor Treasure Hunt

Another interesting game is an indoor treasure hunt. Hide small toys or treats around your home, under furniture, behind curtains, or on shelves. Use toys with bells, feathers, or catnip to get your cat interested.

Treasure hunts let your cat use their natural hunting instincts. They’ll enjoy the challenge of sniffing out and finding the hidden “treasures.” It provides both mental and physical activity to prevent boredom.

best DIY cat toys

Outdoor DIY Cat Enrichment 

In addition to indoor activities, providing your cat an enriching outdoor space can add variety and keep them even more entertained. Here are some affordable outdoor ideas:

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Building a Catio or a Secure Outside Area on your Own

Cats really enjoy spending time outdoors, but sometimes they can be in danger, for example, being hit by a car or attacked by other animals. Constructing an enclosed catio is the best way to allow your cat to access fresh air, outside sun and new things to see and smell. It can be made from simple materials such as wood, mesh, and wire, and should be tailored to the cat in question.

Incorporate new features such as perches, shelves, and toys to enhance the fun of the catio. It is also noted that cats like climbing and looking down from some height. Place ramps, platforms and shelves so that your cat has some to jump on. Other additional features include scratching posts, hanging toys, and puzzle feeders to ensure that their body and brain are engaged.

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Outdoor Cat DIY Toys

Cats play with plants and enjoy going outside. Make your garden friendly for cats and use plants like catnip, cat grass, and valerian so that the cat does not harm itself. These will let your cat roll, slide, and chew safely on everything ranging from toys to furniture. Create small hideouts, tunnels, and trails for your cat to have fun and exercise its curiosity.

Hunting instincts are the main reason why cats find joy in watching birds. There are many ways that you can put up bird feeders in your outdoor area, some of which are using wooden materials, plastic bottles or pipes. Put them where your cat can observe the birds but not interfere with their actions and movements.

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Building a catio or growing catios provides cats with an enjoyable environment that will help them get some fresh air while keeping them safe at the same time. It is important to always consider the safety of your cat at all times.

creative cat games

Safety When Using DIY Cat Toys 

While homemade cat toys are fun, it’s very important to keep your cat’s safety in mind. Here are some safety tips:

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Choosing Safe Materials

In making cat DIY toys, it is advisable to carefully select materials for toys. Avoid toys and objects that have small pieces that the cat may put in its mouth and possibly choke on. Please use non-toxic material that should not harm the cat if they decide to bite it.

Do not use any items that have sharp edges or rough surfaces that would harm your cat by cutting or scratching it. Also, be careful with loops, strings, the ribbons, or anything that your cat could get wrapped up in.

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Supervising Playtime 

In case you are using homemade toys, it is recommended that you always monitor the cat while it plays with the toy. If you see them become aggressive, frustrated or possibly hurt during the game session then immediately pause the game and seize the toy. Teach them not to play with them without supervision because pieces may fall off or any other complication may occur.

Ask your Vet 

It’s a good idea to consult your veterinarian for advice on safe cat DIY toys. They know what types of toys and materials are best for your cat’s age, size and health needs. Your vet can also tell you the right way to introduce new toys so your cat plays safely.

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Remember, every cat is different. A toy that is fun and safe for one cat might not be good for another cat. Always put your cat’s safety first when playing with homemade toys. If you’re ever unsure about a toy, ask your vet before letting your cat use it.

cat games

Conclusion 

Cats, just like any other pet, need to be entertained, so that they can be happy. These are just some of the things that you can do with your cat, to make them DIY toys and or play games with them.

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Ensure that you always select safe materials, observe your cat during play, and consult your vet if there is any question. With some creativity, you can keep your cat excited and happy with new homemade cat DIY toys and games!

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