Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Weekly Ragdoll: Interactive Games\Toys and Why They're a Good Idea for Cats

All Photo and Text Copyright Life with Ragdolls 2013~2016

Hi Everyone,

Let's talk about being overweight, primarily for cats, but their owners too, I can imagine some of you wanting to run away from the topic of diet and being overweight, but how can you if you're overweight, you fat fuck? Just kidding....sort of. ;)
Too many cats in North American are fat or obese, vets say that around 55% of our pet cats are overweight. Yikes! Tons of things can contribute to our pet cats becoming overweight like:

  • Free choice feeding. This is what some people do (actually what a lot of  people do) with their cats, they fill up the food bowl half way or all the way to the top, and when the cat eats it all the owner simply fills up the food bowl again and again, this is very commonly done with dry food (aka kibble), with the excuse that "he\she is hungry". No, they are not and your cat does NOT need food available 24\7 (unless you are traveling\not home and no one to care for the cat, that is the only exception, and I do not know any vets that would disagree with me on this), your cat is often over eating due to poor nutrition, or for the love of the flavoring sprayed onto the food. Yes, sprayed. Pet food companies (even the ones owning the 'better' foods) spray their kibble foods with a flavoring agent to make it much more palatable to pets, this is often artificial but sometimes the flavoring is more 'natural'. This is why you often see cat or dog food labeled as 'beef flavor', 'chicken flavoring', etc. This is also used for human foods and is FDA approved. I frown upon the FDA for a number of reasons, and this is one of them.
  • You're too lazy or 'busy' to exercise your cat. Okay, I am a little guilty of this one. Saphira is 3-5lbs overweight, that may not seem like much, but low exercise will do a number on anyone. I am busy day and night, but I am working on fixing some time to properly exercising her. My vet told me that 1 lb on a human is 10 lbs on a cat. Ouch...if Saphira were human, she would be 30 - 50 lbs overweight. With starting on a raw food deit and sometimes canned food, she has lost a bit of weight. I am keeping this up until she is healthy again. I won't let her down.

Those are just two good   examples of contributors to making our cats overweight. I will list more another day, I am trying to keep this post short.

I love interactive games\toys for my cats, they often improve weight loss, mental smartness, and bonding time with the cat's owner, to just name a few. My cats own several 'mental' toys and games, from a spin ball track to different ball toys that release food or other rewards, and even a cat kong toy. 

Some ways to smarten certain cats:

  • Put food\treats in a treat ball, track, or puzzle and have your cat 'work' it out.
  • Get a laser pointer\pen, point it at certain things (the light switch on the wall if its close enough, a door, or a cabinet door, and if your cat responded to the laser pointer, have the cat learn to close doors. Back when Nico was alive, I would often be a half ass and keep a laser pen on my nightstand, when him and Anya got comfortable where ever in my room, I would point the laser pen at the door, Nico would run and jump at the light and closing the door in the process, then I would trace the laser pen with Nico onto my bed, flick off the pen and lights out. Ha.

Anya figuring out one of their toys on 'expert' mode. She figured this out in 6 seconds.

Ragdoll Mommy~

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