In order for your cat to be happy, healthy and non-destructive, providing an environment that stimulates a cat's needs will provide the enrichment that every cat needs.
*This information is courtesy of Alleycats.org and written by Kelley Bollen of Animal Alliances www.animalalliances.com
Ensure you have things that stimulates your cat(s) physically AND mentally. It will improve their quality of life.
The average cat sleeps 15-18 hrs per day so they like to be comfortable. They are most active at dawn and dusk. Provide comfy places to sleep so they can maximize their rest time.. When choosing a sleeping environment, keep in mind that cats like to feel snug. They like to touch the side of their beds. Choose beds where they can curl up in which are just slightly bigger than themselves.
Perches of any kind are great for cats to survey their environment and feel safe from too much activity, rambunctious kids, dogs and visitors to the home. Respect their need for high away places and they will be much happier.
Provide high walkways.
You don’t have to buy something expensive places to hide. These can also help socialize or relax more timid cats. Any type of hiding spot will do (as long as they come out to eat and use the litter box and can't get trapped).
** Please be careful with bags with handles. Cut the handles off first or else your cat will get the handle stuck around his/her neck and panic.
Build or buy a Catio! Free roaming cats are not safe but there are ways they can enjoy the outdoors while remaining safely protected.
Cats tend to scratch where they spend most of their time. So scratching posts need to be in those areas and not in an isolated area. if you r cat scratches your living room sofa, then having a scratching post in the basement will not solve the problem.
Most cats prefer sisal. It is good for their nails and there are lots of different forms. You should have all different kinds of posts throughout the home.
Shag carpet is not the most preferred since cats can get their nails caught in the loops of the carpets and then panic and never use again or tear a nail quick. Berber carpet is preferred and recommended.
Cats love natural wood to scratch on. You can make these yourself from wood found outside. Keep in mind that scratching bark can leave a bit of a mess though.
Provide all different orientations. Verticals should be tall as cats like to scratch. But make sure they are stable. You don’t want them to fall over and startle your cat.
Cats will drink more from a fountain than a bowl. Cats don't like stagnant water and will drink minimally from them. Cats require a lot of hydration so the more they will drink, they healthier they will be.
Make sure the laser game ends with the laser on a toy. When the prey item disappears it is very frustrating to the cat and they can become agitated. Hunting activities always need to end with a reward and the capture of a toy is sufficient for your cat.
You can marinate old toys in dried catnip for a day or two.