Cool gifts for cool cats

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Cool gifts for cool cats

Treat your feline friend to some special gifts this festive season – and beyond!

The holiday season probably isn’t your cat’s favorite time of year. Kitties like their routines, so all the upheaval and comings and goings can be stressful for them. Why not make life a little easier for her with a few special gifts? Here are a few ideas to get you inspired!

Cat tree

A cat tree satisfies a number of feline instincts – from climbing to claw-sharpening to watching the world from high places. And today’s cat trees are becoming more elaborate all the time, so you’re sure to find something your kitty will love.

Look for a quality product made from durable materials, and that won’t tip easily. Ideally, a cat tree should offer lots of scope for feline fun, with multiple scratching surfaces, cubbyholes or tunnels to climb through and explore, and perches or hammocks for cat naps. Armarkat is one company that offers a range of cat trees in many sizes, designs, colors and prices.

Be sure to situate the cat tree where your feline friend will be encouraged to use it – near a sunny window in a living area or spare room is a good location. Who knows, a new cat tree may even distract him from trying to climb the Christmas tree!

Food

Give him the gift of good health by treating him to a better diet. Perhaps you’re already feeding your cat a high quality food, but if not, the New Year is a good time to get him eating something healthier. Keep in mind that switching your cat to a new diet in the middle of the holidays may not be the best idea, if he’s stressed, so wait until January when things calm down to make the switch. In the meantime, do some window shopping to find a premium quality cat food that’s as natural as possible – one that’s made from whole meat ingredients and  free of cheap fillers, by-products and artificial additives.

Many companies now offer high quality cat foods. One example is Merrick, which offers a complete line of both wet and dry foods for all life stages, made from chicken, beef, salmon, turkey and other whole meat protein sources. Redbarn Pet Products is another excellent source of premium cat foods, including canned stews and pates featuring beef, chicken, salmon and tuna.

Remember to take it slow when transitioning your cat to a new food. Too sudden and abrupt a change can result in diarrhea.

Treats

Cat treats abound, but don’t grab the first thing you see on pet store shelves. Many commercial cat treats are made from questionable and/or highly-processed ingredients, and are loaded with synthetic colors and flavors. In short, they’re not good for your kitty! High quality treats will cost a little more, but it’s more than worth it in terms of your cat’s health.

Take the time to look at ingredient lists, and choose treats that contain the least number of ingredients, and that feature real meat. As with cat foods, there are lots of better quality treats available in pet supply stores nowadays, so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding something that’s healthy as well as tasty. As an example, Tiki Cat Stix makes unique wet treats that can be given on their own or used to add moisture to dry foods. They’re made from real chicken or duck, or choose from a variety of seafoods such as tuna, salmon, shrimp or scallops.

Litter

As with food, changing your cat’s litter during the upheaval of the holidays probably isn’t the wisest move, so wait until after the New Year. Most cats will adjust to a new litter in time, but if you do it during the holidays and she decides she doesn’t like it, she may eliminate outside the litter box – the last thing you want when you have guests over!

The best way to introduce your cat to a new litter is to add a bit of the new product to the old, and gradually increase the quantity of new litter over time. Watch your cat for any negative reactions; if she starts avoiding the litter box, try something else.

One litter product that’s highly acceptable to cats is Catalyst. It’s made from upcycled soft wood fiber, making it an environmentally-responsible choice. For many people, Arm and Hammer’s Clump & Seal™ Cat Litter is their kitties’ go-to (no pun intended!) litter. They offer a variety of choices, including a natural clumping litter made from corn, and Feline Pine™, made from wood shavings.

These ideas are just the tips of the iceberg. From toys to beds, there are lots more ways to treat your cat (or someone else’s!) this holiday season.