Let’s face it, most cat owners can’t resist spoiling their cats, and some of us will go to great lengths to do so. Whether it’s a kitten, a junior or a senior cat we love to make sure its life is as happy as can be. Here are 19 amazing ways to spoil your cat, and some of them won’t cost you a cent!
1. Get Pet Insurance
I’ve put this at the top of the list as it is definitely something to give great consideration to. Cat medical bills can soon add up to shockingly high amounts. I can’t stress enough how important it is to research and purchase the best insurance plan you can afford.
It’s always best to start insurance as soon as you can as it’s hard to get cover for any existing conditions that a cat has already been treated for.
Even if you’re cat never goes outside it can still develop illnesses that are expensive to treat. I don’t know any owner who would not be mortified if they couldn’t afford any necessary medical treatment for their cat.
Expect this to cost around $25 per month (for a 1-year-old domestic shorthaired cat).
2. Take It For Regular Health Checks
This is something most pet insurance plans insist on. An annual health check gives your vet the opportunity to give your cat any booster vaccinations due and to check its general health including heart rate, weight, and teeth.
It is important to keep your cat healthy because then it will have the best chance of a long and happy life with you.
3. The Perfect Diet
Cats should be given a well-balanced diet which includes all the essential nutrients they need. If you buy pre-prepared cat food, it is usually labeled for a specific age of cat so make sure you choose the right food for yours.
Good quality pre-prepared food is developed with the correct balance of calories, protein, minerals, and vitamins for each life stage.
If you make your own, make sure it is well-balanced. By giving your cat the correct balanced diet for its age, you will be doing your best to keep it as healthy as possible throughout its life.
4. Raised Food Bowls
A raised bowl allows a cat to eat in a more natural position. Many cats like to eat from elevated dishes, especially senior ones who may begin to struggle to bend their heads down.
You can put your existing bowls on a platform or purchase a custom made one. Here’s an excellent example (here’s a link to read reviews on Amazon).
This one has a shallow dish perfect for cats who suffer from whisker fatigue. Yes, this is a genuine condition that some cats suffer from where they dislike the sensitive tips of their whiskers bumping the sides of food bowls.
If your cat often pulls food from its bowl to eat from the floor, whisker fatigue could well be the reason.
5. Buy a Lovely Drinking Fountain
If you have a cat that likes to drink from a running stream of water (like my cat Charlie above) then a cat fountain is the perfect solution. Why not spoil your cat by treating it to one?
This is my favorite fountain (here’s a link to read reviews on Amazon) because even during a power cut, water is still accessible – not all fountains have this feature.
Cats are often reluctant drinkers so it’s important to encourage them to consume as much water as possible in whatever way you can, especially as they get older.
6. Provide an Accessible Litter Box
There are many types of litter box available including open, lidded, self-cleaning, tall and low-sided. Some cats prefer open top trays and some like ones with lids.
If you buy one with a lid and your cat decides to develop claustrophobia, you can take the lid off and stash it away somewhere.
As cats get older, they may find stepping over a high rim a problem so then it could be time to invest in a tray with lower sides.
It might also be an idea to have a few trays dotted around your home so there is always one within easy reach.
If you don’t like the look of litter boxes there are some excellent discreet designs available. Here’s a brilliant one (here’s a link to read reviews on Amazon) that looks like a plant in a pot! I love it.
7. Provide a Cozy Bed
Cats have a great talent for seeking out the coziest and most comfortable places to sleep. Usually, they can be found curled up on the best seats in the house or snuggled up on your bed.
Why not treat your cat to an extra special bed of its own? There are many types available, some quite gimmicky and some more traditional. Lots of cats like small boxes as they feel secure in them so a bed with high walls and a roof is perfect.
I made the one above from a wicker shopping basket and an old T-shirt and then lined it with one of my old fleece tops. Harry loves it! You can do the same with a cardboard box.
8. Provide Warmth All Winter
Cats are heat seekers, even those with plenty of fur. They know where the hot water pipes lie beneath floors, love to sleep in front of a fire and lay near any heat source available on a chilly day.
We can’t all afford to leave the heating on all day to keep our cat warm so how can we ensure it doesn’t feel cold and miserable all day long, especially in its senior years?
There are plenty of low-energy heat pads on the market that you can place into your cat’s usual bed.
But … I’ve just found this perfect solution: the Thermo-Kitty Heated Cat Bed (here’s a link to read reviews on Amazon). It’s thermostatically controlled and is activated by the presence of your cat when the room temperature is low enough. Brilliant!
9. Get a Pet Staircase
Something to consider for elderly cats or those with joint problems such as hip dysplasia is a pet staircase. You could also place boxes and low tables around your house to help your cat reach the high up places it loves to frequent.
There are a variety of purpose-built pet stairs on the market. Here is a popular example that is carpeted and can double as a scratching post too.
10. Healthy Claws
All cats love to scratch – usually thing you don’t want to be scratched. It is important that they are allowed to scratch somewhere to shed the outer sheaths of their claws and also to flex their muscles.
As cats age, they can lose the ability to retract their claws properly so consider keeping them trimmed so they aren’t forever snagging them on things.
Make sure you provide your cat with plenty of things it’s allowed to scratch. Here’s the ultimate scratching lounger (here’s a link to read reviews on Amazon) that’s stylish enough to grace any home.
Another idea is to use any carpet offcuts you have to make scratching pads- these won’t cost you a penny. Or you can invest in some sisal rope and wind it around chair and table legs to provide plenty of scratching posts.
11. A Helping Hand With Grooming
A cat’s tongue only skims the surface of its coat; it doesn’t penetrate to the underlayers. Grooming your cat will help to limit the amount is sheds. Start a grooming routine from day one and keep it up regularly, especially with senior cats.
You will help to prevent your cat from swallowing too much fur and developing fur balls in its stomach and save yourself from having to clean them up when your cat inevitably vomits them up.
You will also stop nasty, painful knots and mats from developing in longer haired cats. Invest in some decent brushes for the job and to suit your cat’s fur type.
12. Provide Plenty of Interesting Toys
Most cats are extremely playful so make sure you keep a wide variety of toys available and make time to play with your cat every day. It will relish play sessions with you and you will be ensuring it stays healthy and active, especially if it’s an indoor cat. Even old cats will play and can revert to behaving like kittens if encouraged.
A simple fishing wand toy is always a hit with cats. Here’s a perfect example (here’s a link to read reviews on Amazon).
It’s easy to make toys for your cat. Collect feathers and tie a bunch of them to a piece of string, scrunch up some silver foil or paper to make a ball or take a piece of sisal rope and unravel the threads at one end.
There are endless things your cat will play with and most of them can be found around your home or yard.
13. Buy or Make an Indoor Climbing Tree
If you are feeling practical, you could make your cat an indoor climbing tree. Find bough from a tree and strip off the bark. Attach it to a sturdy base and then wind string in various places and add some carpeted platforms.
Alternatively, here is my favorite readymade one (here’s a link to read reviews on Amazon). It has plenty of features to entertain any cat.
You could also place shelves at various heights on your walls and across the tops of windows. Your cat will love using these to climb up high. Add carpet to them for added grip.
14. Somewhere to Hide
Create plenty of hiding places around your home for your cat to hide away whenever it feels like being alone and out of sight. These can be spaces under beds (with storage boxes creating walls), empty cardboard boxes or gaps behind chairs and sofas. They don’t have to cost you anything and your cat will love them.
15. Make a Safe Outside space
If you have a cat that is allowed to spend time outside then it is very lucky as many don’t have this luxury for safety reasons. Consider cat-proofing your garden to prevent escape or construct a large enclosure that your cat can access from your house via a window, tunnel or a flap.
Many shop-bought runs just aren’t big enough so if possible have one custom made. Make sure there is plenty of shade and that it contains things to keep your cat amused.
16. Lavish Attention
Contrary to popular belief, most cats love human attention and company, so make sure you make time to spend with yours, especially when you’ve been out all day.
Remember, lonely cats can become depressed. Making a fuss of your cat, allowing it to be near you, and playing with it are things that are essential for its mental well-being.
17. Install Night Lights
These are particularly important for senior cats as they can become disorientated in the dark. If your cat meows a lot when you are in bed, night lights can help. You can buy these cheaply and plug them into wall power sockets all over your home.
Many come on automatically at dusk and turn off at dawn so you don’t have to do anything. And they don’t use much energy either. These are a perfect example.
18. Create a Hammock
Cats love a hammock and there are a variety of ways you can create one in your home. Take a square of stretchy fabric the same size as your coffee table and tie one corner to each leg just above ground level, You could do something similar between four chair legs.
You could also purchase a window hammock where your cat can while away some of the day watching the world go by. Here’s a perfect example (here’s a link to read reviews on Amazon).
19. Stick to a Daily Routine
This item is last but not least. Cats thrive on routine so as soon as you get one keep it happy by getting into a regular daily pattern. Make sure you feed it at the same time every day and in the same place.
Keep its litter box in the spot. Older cats can get completely disorientated if things aren’t where they usually are, so keep your cat happy and free from confusion by keeping its little world as consistent as possible.
You might take up some of the ideas in this post and you might ignore some. The main message is that there are many simple things you can do to give your cat an amazing, long, happy and healthy life with you.
Finally, have you ever wondered whether all hairless cats are Sphynx? The answer may surprise you…