Here are five simple tips for playing with cats that will make your kitty’s playtime eco-friendly and lots of fun.
1. Channel Your Inner Cat
Let’s face the truth. When choosing cat toys, you tend to buy the ones that appeal to you. The toys are bright, colorful and awfully darned cute. Don’t think this applies to you? Well, here’s the litmus test. Ask yourself when was the last time you sniffed a catnip toy and pontificated on its herbaceous bouquet?
Instead of choosing toys that appeal to you as a human being, think like a cat. Your cat already gives you lots of clues on what she enjoys playing with. Cats let you know in an instant whether a toy is a hit or a miss.
Take an inventory of the toys that your cat loves to play with and notice what characteristics they have in common. And, do this from a cat’s perspective. Maybe your cat’s favorite toys all make a rattling sound or are stuffed with catnip. The next time you’re looking for new toys to play with your cat, choose ones that have similar characteristics.
You’ll help save the planet by choosing toys that your cat will actually play with instead of ones that she’ll never use. Buying fewer toys is not only greener, it’s also great for your wallet.
2. Buy Locally Made Cat Toys
Transportation emissions are a significant source of greenhouse gases. When a cat toy is made on the other side of the world, it needs to travel a very long distance in order to arrive at your local pet store. Reduce your carbon footprint by buying toys made closer to home.
Ask your favorite retailer to carry locally made pet products. And if you need more inspiration for playing with cats, search online for cat toys made by local businesses and craftspeople. An added bonus will be that you’ll be helping to support the local economy.
3. Examine Cat Toys for Quality and Durability
Before buying a bag of cheap mice for a few dollars, stop and consider how long these cat toys will last. Are they the kind of toy that your cat will chew up within seconds? Will your cat tear through it in a matter of minutes?
While quality cat toys might cost a bit more initially, you’ll end up saving money in the long run because they’ll last longer. Check fabrics for durability and tug at attachments to see if they’ll stay attached when playing with your cat.
4. Upcycle When Playing With Cats
Your recycling bin is a delightful source of inspiration. When playing with your cat, you don’t need to be fancy. Something that you might consider to be garbage is probably the cat’s meow to your kitty. Get creative and turn that trash into an eco-friendly cat toy.
Scrap paper crumples nicely into paw-sized balls to chase. Toilet paper rolls can easily be morphed into a multitude of cat toys and plastic rings on a string are cat heaven. For even more homemade cat toys, check out the eco-friendly book, Make Your Own Cat Toys: Saving the Planet One Cat Toy at a Time.
5. Go Organic
A 2008 study by the Environmental Working Group found that pets had much higher concentrations of chemicals in their bodies than humans do. Given that cats spend a lot of time licking and gnawing on their toys, it makes sense to reduce your cat’s exposure to potentially hazardous toxins.
Choose organic cat toys made from organic fibres and filled with organic catnip. Organic products are grown without the use of synthetic pesticides. Your cat and the planet will both benefit.
Going green when playing with your cat is easy and fun to do. Your cat and the planet will appreciate your efforts.
What are your favorite green ideas for playing with cats? Share them below.