Making your cat happy is easier than many people think. Here are a few simple and cheap cat toys you can use to keep your cat entertained and active.
My cats — like many indoor cats — are lazy, sleepy and generally overweight. They have an entire box full of toys that they can get out at any time but they have played with them so much they tend to ignore them. It takes a constant flow of new playthings to keep their interest.
In that scenario, rotating toys and using cheap household objects makes sense. At my place we alternate between a few toys every few days to make them seem brand new every time we bring them back out. Here are a few household items we use for our cats:
Elastic hair bands: These are great for a few reasons. They're super cheap and my wife has a stack of them. Even better, the used ones have her scent on them, making them even more desirable to our cats. Cats love things with strong smells — it's an instinctive thing to mask their own scent.
Balled paper: Don't throw out junk mail or old documents straight away — ball them up and throw them. Cats like things to get away from them so they get the thrill of the chase. Try different types of paper as well. Binder paper ripped from a spiral-bound notebook works well because of the small scraps of paper on the edges.
Spiral binding: Cats like anything with an unusual texture. Remove the spiral binding from an old notebook and cut it into small pieces — ideal for spring-like toys that are flexible and roll on hard flooring.
Shoe laces: Shoe laces are a cat favourite mostly because they get stuck to their claws, and you as the owner can get in on the action by dragging them across the floor or dangling them. Just rip out an old pair from your shoes and you have a great toy that has outdoor scents built right in.
Bobby pins: Again, my wife has a ready-made supply of these and you can get more for very little money. Slightly spreading them into the shape of a V adds a little more dimension.
Got any other cheap toys that work for your cat(s)? Let us know in the comments.