Whether you have an outdoor or indoor cat, you want them to be happy when they’re home; this becomes more important during the colder months of the year when they need to be inside. There is no scientific evidence that points to cats being happier outdoors, so you should be able to provide everything your feline family member needs to remain not only content but happy while in your home!

Here are 5 ways to keep your cat happy while they’re indoors!

Keep It Clean

Anyone who has spent time with cats knows that they are clean freaks. Cats spend multiple hours a day grooming and cleaning themselves, so it should come as no surprise that they prefer their environments to be clean as well. Your cat’s litter box is always the main offender in this arena. Make sure you are cleaning it daily and changing the litter out completely every couple of weeks. Cats also like a clean place to eat and a clean bowl to eat out of, as their sense of smell will pick up traces of previous meals; they may even start to refuse dinner if you regularly reuse the same bowl. Cats also like a clean space to sleep, that’s why they often choose your bed for cat naps. Additionally, cats like to play with clean toys, so keep toys in a clean space away from the litter box and wash them if possible!

cat in litter box, keep cat happy indoors

Play Time!

As a cat owner, you know you need to play with your cat. But, do you know how much and why? While they are generally relaxed, they also have the instinct to hunt, and that’s why they play the way they do. Daily play satisfies this instinct. It also helps your cat exercise to maintain a healthy weight, reduces their boredom and stress, and helps them maintain and improve their psychological health. Cats crave interactive play and love to chase toys, lights, and you! Make sure you provide your cat with one to two play sessions of twenty to thirty minutes per day. You can also purchase interactive enrichment toys for when you aren’t home!

cat with enrichment toy, keep indoor cat happy

Create A Vantage Point

Cats love heights. It’s hardwired into them as a survival instinct as it allows them to survey their environment, seek out prey, and remain safe from potential predators. For the lions in our living rooms, it’s a way to get away from kids who want to pick them up and dogs who chase them and still hang out with their favorite humans. There is also an element of prestige in being higher than everyone else in the home because cats have a thing with status… if you haven’t noticed.

cat in cat tower, keep indoor cat happy

TV For Your Cat!

Cats LOVE windows; it’s like watching television for them. Birds, squirrels, other cats, and humans provide your cat with hours of viewing pleasure from a safe place. They can also keep an eye on you when you go outside. Open windows mean breezes carrying plenty of new smells for your cat to enjoy, especially during the spring season.  Windows can also present the opportunity for interaction with insects, which gives your feline the chance to swat at flies as if they were playing whack-a-mole! If you have long curtains or blinds, your windows could also provide your cat with a nice, isolated spot to unwind and nap. When possible, open your windows for your cat to enjoy, but make sure you have properly installed screens first!

cat in window, keep cat happy indoors

Attention, Please.

This should go without saying, but it’s necessary to give your cat attention every day. Thirty to forty-five minutes of daily attention is crucial to your cat’s health and social development. Beyond that, appropriate amounts of attention help to strengthen your bond with your cat and allows them to feel like part of the pack. Your cat may not always outwardly show it, but they DO like you and ARE affectionate creatures. Cats who do not receive proper attention can become destructive and anti-social, so make sure they’re getting enough playtime, snuggles, and messages!

cat being pet, keep your cat happy indoors

Conclusion

When we welcome feline family members into our homes, we take on the responsibility of keeping them happy and healthy. Properly maintained and clean cat areas, appropriate amounts of play, places of their own to safely hang out, maybe an open window now and then, and plenty of love and affection make for a happy cat! Following these simple tips are an easy way to keep your kitty purring!