9 Indoor Activities For Cats Keep Them Entertained

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Cats need regular mental stimulation to keep them from getting bored. This is especially true with indoor cats, as their exploration is limited to the four corners of your home.

When cats get bored, they may exhibit a range of problematic behaviors. These can include excessive grooming, anxiety, overeating or undereating, and destructive responses like scratching furniture or chewing on household items. 

To prevent this, it’s important to give your cat with ample opportunities to play and explore inside your home. Here are some of the best indoor activities for cats to avoid boredom and strengthen your bond with them. 

1. Laser Pointer 

A person playfully moving a red laser pointer across the floor with a cat excitedly chasing it

You can’t go wrong with the ol’ reliable laser pointer. 

The quick movements of the light mimic the movement of a living animal, promoting their predatory instincts to catch that moving creature no matter what. They’d pounce, stalk, chase, and evade the moving light, keeping them mentally and physically engaged. 

This activity has the advantage of improving a cat’s agility and coordination, which is especially beneficial for developing kittens. For obese or overweight cats, it can help them shed excess pounds and improve their overall fitness level. 

Just make sure that you don’t play with the laser pointer every day because cats can get frustrated when they’re unable to catch the prey no matter what their efforts. Eventually, they may realize that the laser isn’t a creature at all and stop playing with you altogether. 

2. Crumpled Paper 

Crinkly paper paradise for a playful cat joyfully batting at a crumpled piece of paper

Here’s a simple and cost-effective way to entertain your cat: crumble several pieces of paper and scatter them across the floor! 

Crumpled paper mimics the erratic movement of prey when disturbed, triggering a cat’s predatory instincts. 

Use a mix of printed paper, tissue paper, and construction paper so your cat can play with varied textures and sounds. 

Crumpled aluminum foil also works wonders. I like to toss the foil ball for my cat to chase and fetch. I don’t know what it is with aluminum foil in particular but he goes coo-coo for it. Try it with your cat, too!

3. Indoor Grass Patch 

A sunny corner with a designated patch of fresh green cat grass growing in a wooden box

Since indoor cats can’t enjoy the great outdoors, why not bring the great outdoors inside? 

One way you can do this is to provide them with a grass patch to lounge and play on. Cats love the smell and texture of grass, so don’t be surprised if they spend the majority of their time on it!

Make sure to buy 100% natural grass and not one of those fake plastic ones. Cats sometimes like to chomp on grass, so it’ll do no good for them to nibble on toxic materials.

Read More: 10 DIY Cat Toys to Spark Your Cat’s Play Instinct

4. Cat Maze 

A photorealistic image of a curious cat investigating its reflection in a mirror maze

If you’ve had your cat for a while, they’ve likely already explored every nook and cranny of your home. So, why not challenge their superior navigational and problem-solving skills with a cat maze? 

Cat mazes have tunnels, compartments, and obstacles through which your cat must navigate to reach his rewards. This can be exciting to cats who are naturally curious and love to explore new environments.

For best results, strategically place the treats in different locations every time he enters the maze to keep him guessing! 

5. Cardboard Playpen 

A spacious DIY cardboard playpen decorated with colorful drawings and cutouts

Got several unused cardboard pieces lying around? Turn them into a cardboard playpen! 

Cut out a doorway on a cardboard box and line the bottom of the playpen with a soft pillow or blanket. Then, throw in your cat’s favorite items, like a sock filled with catnip, a floppy robotic fish, or a stuffie. 

If you’re feeling creative, dangle several toys inside the playpen with yarn. You can also include a scratching post nearby to satisfy their desire to scratch without straying too far from their new mini home. 

6. Interactive Puzzle Feeder 

A close-up photo of a cat intently pawing at an interactive puzzle feeder filled with kibble

Add excitement to your cat’s daily meals with an interactive puzzle feeder. 

These special feeders challenge your cat to work for their kibble and treats, tapping into their natural hunting instinct and problem-solving skills. 

Your cat will have to bat, paw, or nudge at the feeder for the food to get out, turning a usually boring mealtime into a fun and stimulating game. 

Interactive feeders work great for overweight and meal-excited cats, as they can help slow down their eating. 

Related: 8 Delicious and Healthy Homemade Cat Treat Recipes

7. Interactive Food Dispenser Toy

A playful cat batting at a rolling interactive food dispensing toy across the floor

Interactive food dispenser toys are much like interactive puzzle toys, except they require cats to manipulate knobs, levers, or other mechanisms to release the food. In this way, they’re more challenging than the puzzles. 

Interactive food dispenser toys come in various forms, including balls, cubes, and shapes that wobble, spin, and roll. Insert your cat’s favorite treat in the toy and watch him play with it for hours on end.

8. Bird Feeder 

A sunny windowsill adorned with a comfortable cat bed and a bird feeder

Cats love window-watching. To them, windows are an endless source of entertainment and mental stimulation.

Make their window-viewing experience even more exciting by attaching a bird feeder just outside your window. 

Fill it up with nuts and seeds every morning and let your cat watch as dozens of birds flutter by. 

9. Cat Tree 

A multi-level cat tree with scratching posts platforms ramps and dangling toys

Cat trees are like multifunctional activity centers. They satisfy a cat’s natural instinct to perch, climb, and scratch, and give them a space to rest and hide from predators (read: vacuum cleaners, dogs, and the sticky hands of children). 

When they’re feeling playful, they can jump from perch to perch or balance themselves precariously on the narrow platforms. This makes cat trees an excellent outlet for their boundless energy, satisfying their desire to explore and play. 

Closing Thoughts 

I hope this list of indoor cat activities for cats gives you an idea of how to stimulate your cat’s mind and keep them entertained. By incorporating these activities into your cat’s daily routine, you can help prevent boredom and promote a happier and more fulfilled feline friend!