Started - Environmental enrichment
Quality of life issues
Our felines rely on us to meet their physical, mental, and emotional
needs. An enriched environment provides both mental
and physical exercise, lowers the cat's stress, and prevents many
potential behavior problems. Reducing stress makes
it easier for your cat to learn new behaviors.
the environment before starting a behavior modification or
training program to assure your cat's basic needs are being met.
Predictability: Develop somewhat of a routine time for feeding,
training, playtime, and grooming. Establish your own routine of
scooping the litterbox each morning and evening. Make nightly
television or reading time - quality lap time.
Novelty: As much as cats enjoy a routine, make small regular
changes in the environment to teach coping skills and to prevent
boredom. Change bedding. Rotate toys. Arrange new climbing
areas. Provide different size boxes and brown paper bags to explore.
Hide treats around the house. Provide dry food in food puzzles.
Social time: Cat relish social interaction, mental
stimulation, and companionship. Allow your cat to simply "hang out"
with you. Cats enjoy being the center of attention. Sit with your
cat while she eats. Talk to her and gently stroke her during meals.
Gently brush your cat to remove dead fur and reduce shedding.
Stimulate games using chase-type toys. Teach your cat to come and
sit on cue for treats.
Cleanliness: A cat must have written, "Cleanliness is next to
godliness." Clean bedding often. Wash food and water dishes
daily. Keep litterbox scooped clean. Dump old litter and replace
with new litter monthly. Replace the litterbox annually.