What your cat wants for Christmas: gift ideas for the holidays or any time of the year

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By Sabine Ganezer

If a cat could write a wish list to Santa Claus, he would likely drop requests like world domination or a whole ham. But these items aren’t necessarily healthy for your cat in the long run. With that in mind, here is a revised wishlist of items your cat wants that will enrich their life and your bond. Disclaimer: None of the products mentioned have sponsored or endorsed this article.

12. A delicious meal. There is controversy over whether dry kibble is really bad for cats, or just indifferent. But a little wet food every now and then is good for their kidneys and digestive system, as well as their taste buds. Merrick’s Backcountry Cat Food is grain free and rich in real protein, to feed our obliging little carnivores, plus it comes in an irresistible sauce.

11. A Partridge in a Pear Tree (or regional equivalent.) “Cat TV” is a window to the outside world, preferably one that includes a view of the birds. Although bird feeders are technically not allowed in California, you can still encourage wildlife to put on a show for your cat by using a birdbath or a simple tree!

10. Speaking of trees … traditional Christmas trees can present dangers to pets as they can eat the needles or attempt to climb the tree, resulting in mass destruction. Some keepers protect their trees with a circle of tangerines or other junkies. But a smoother method would be to set up a Christmas cat tree – a decorative cat tree with beds, scratching surfaces, and cat condos, so your cats can climb the tree at their leisure. As a bonus, these already have an angel on top as soon as your cat jumps up there!

9. A comfortable bed. There are a variety of cat bed options available, such as the Feltcave Felt Caves, which provide a sense of security and privacy, or the Aspen Self-Heating Cat Bed, which uses a layer of mylar for absorb the cat’s heat and reflect it back. Cats are more likely to use the furniture you buy for them if you cover the bed with a blanket that the cat has already rubbed its scent on or if you sprinkle catnip on the bed.

8. A comfortable box. As all seasoned cat sitters know, the empty box the gift is delivered in might be more fascinating to your cat than the gift itself. Cats sit in boxes for safety, property, comfort, and sheer fun!

7. Toys to develop the brain. Puzzle toys and sniffer mats give cats the chance to solve a “problem”, with the motivation to get a treat. This can be a great way to keep cats entertained and keep their brains flexible at times when you can’t play with them. There are also a lot of DIY toy options that are easy to find on the internet.

6. A toast to their health. All cats should see the veterinarian at least once a year for a regular checkup, and more often for the elderly, young kittens, and cats with health concerns. While this may not seem like a pleasant “gift” (more like the gifts they leave in your shoes), it is an essential part of being a responsible cat sitter. Most vets also offer services like nail trimming, which would be difficult to do on your own and improve the quality of life for your cat and your own. Regularly brushing your cat’s coat and teeth, using methods and equipment appropriate for the job, can also increase her lifespan and quality of life.

5. An aquatic wonderland. Most cats don’t drink enough water – they’re adapted to get most of their hydration from their food, but this doesn’t always happen in our homes. And no self-respecting cat will drink from that bowl of stale water sitting next to her food, making her unappetizing and potentially infected! To encourage healthy water consumption and provide hours of entertainment, consider getting a fountain designed for cats.

4. Peace on Earth and Good Will towards Catkind. Has your cat been adopted from a shelter or rescue? Or were they found on the street, in a car engine, or some other unlikely location? Chances are your rescue cat doesn’t care about others like him – it’s just not in the feline nature – but if you love cats and want to help them, there are plenty of ways. to do volunteer work, such as TNR and shelter work, and of course, monetary donations.

3. Interactive toys. For most cats, there is no substitute for interactive play time with their humans. Fishing rod toys, also known as wand toys, are one of the best ways to get your cat to exercise and unleash their hunting energy in a constructive pursuit. One of the all-time favorites among the cats I’ve worked with is the Our Pets Play-N-Squeak Bounce-N-Pounce wand – the squeaky sounds of the mouse are proving irresistible to my own elderly cat, and catnip and feathers are also a plus.

A cat relaxes in the middle of a holiday setting. Photo by Andrew Mead.

2. A safe space. If you’re entertaining guests for the holidays, your cat might be confused by the change in routine, not to mention the surge in door rings and gleeful laughter (the horror!). Make sure to provide your cat with a safe, human-free space they can retreat to at will, complete with their favorite beds and toys, items with their scent, as well as food, water and a litter box. By the way, to minimize the risk of losing your cat, keep her behind a closed door while you open the front door for guests.

1. More time with you! Even if he doesn’t admit it, your cat loves you and he would like to have more time to bond, whether it’s playing, snuggling or just sitting in the same room watching you watch a movie. vacation while pretending to ignore you.

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