Cat Exercise: Using an Indoor Climbing Tree
Because felines are such different creatures from dogs, and have personalities that enjoy a more relaxed lifestyle, with playfulness mixed in here and there; cat owners often forget how important it is that exercise still be a part of their cat’s daily life in order for them to remain healthy and happy. This is especially true for indoor cats. We don’t walk cats on leashes like we do a dog, nor do we take them outdoors for a game of fetch like their canine counterparts. In a household with multiple indoor cats, exercise is an issue that usually takes care of itself somewhat, but still needs to be addressed to some degree.
One of the best ways to provide exercise for your cat and give him a place to climb up high and stretch and lounge whenever he wants, is to provide an indoor climbing tree for him. Have you ever noticed that the first place a cat will go when it’s outdoors is someplace above the ground? If there is a tree nearby, they will usually go right to it and climb it to a limb high enough above the ground to perch there and take a good look around. By nature, cats are climbers and prefer to be up high so they can survey their surroundings, both directly below them and farther away, from a safe vantage point. Although it may be difficult to get a cat out of a tree, it is not because they can’t figure out how; but simply because they choose to stay there. Felines love to be king or queen of their territory, so don’t fret; they will be able to get down out of the tree, even though it may not be as easy as getting up. Cat’s will not drop down out of a tree backwards because they cannot see where they are landing; however, if given enough time, they will be able to maneuver safely to the ground without help. For cat owners who wish to make their cat happy, but don’t want the stress or worry of letting their cat outdoors to climb a tree to get more exercise, a cat climbing tree is a great idea.
These carpet-covered poles (some with covered spaces to climb in and out of, or ledges where they can enjoy a nap in peace) come in all sizes, heights, and shapes to suit any budget. These climbing poles are easy to assemble, come in a variety of styles to suit your home decor and are quite sturdy and durable. Most of these climbing trees are stabilized with an adjustable pole that runs through the center of them from ceiling to floor to help stabilize and keep it from moving around or tipping; even when multiple cats are using it at the same time. Another great feature of many climbing poles/trees, is that they provide a private place for your cat to sleep, away from visiting guests and small children. Although cats are quite affectionate and love to interact, they do need some time away from people where they can rest comfortably without prying eyes or household traffic to disturb them. Climbing trees are great for felines because they are easily accessible to your feline and will encourage him to address his natural instinct of climbing; while providing an excellent source for playful exercise.
Yet another great benefit of climbing trees is the warmth they provide in winter. Even the styles with only ledges and no hiding holes accomplish this because they raise the cat towards the ceiling where the warmer air rises. And no matter what age your cat is, from kitten to senior, they will be able to maneuver these poles with ease, and without any assistance from their owners once they get used to them. Climbing trees are also a great way to keep your cat from being bored while you are away from home at work all day.
Cats will never lose their interest in or ability to climb, so providing a safe place for them to do so will also help to reduce their desire to climb the curtains on your windows, or knock over knick-knacks on high shelves they feel they can reach. Along with climbing, indoor poles also give your feline a place to scratch and sharpen his claws; which many cat owners prefer over their expensive sofas and decorative floor rugs. Cat climbing trees can be purchased at almost any general merchandise store with a pet section, or your local pet store. If you do not wish to purchase a climbing tree, they are easy to make; requiring only basic building skills and minimal materials, and you can find designs and plans for them in numerous places on the internet or in your local hardware store. If you don’t see anything you like in local stores and pet shops, you can find lots of unique styles you can purchase on the internet and have delivered directly to your home.
You will find that once you get a climbing tree in your home, your cat will spend a lot more time being active and getting the exercise he needs to stay healthy, especially once he becomes familiar with the tree and feels comfortable with it. Exercise is important to your cat’s health and well-being, both physically and emotionally. Regular exercise will help keep him from becoming overweight which leads to diabetes, and also keep him from becoming bored which sometimes leads to destructive behavior, or even depression. This is particularly true in single cat households. It is easy to attach swinging cat toys, catnip and other fun playthings to the climbing poles, which will provide even further entertainment cat and another way for you to interact and play with your beloved feline.