Staying home doesn't have to be boring – for you or your cat

Although staying inside may be new, and a bit challenging, to us, it isn't new for our house cats. They know that inside your home is the safest place to be.

While finding ways to keep yourself amused at home, how about finding new ways to keep your cat entertained too?

Cat trees. An oldie but a goodie, cat trees give cats options and they love options, especially when it comes to feeling safe. A cat tree allows cats to get away from dogs or over-anxious grandkids. Plus, cats like to sit up high and observe their world, so a well-placed tree will give them a new view of their home. You can also put a tree in front of a window to give your cat a place to watch the world.

Wall perches/shelves. Yes, they're a thing. For confident cats who really like to get up high, mount shelves going up the wall and your cat can choose just how high he/she wants to go.

Hidey spots. What cat doesn't like to hide sometimes? A new hidey spot can be as simple as the box from your Amazon order, the paper bag your groceries were delivered in, or you can purchase inexpensive, collapsible hiding cubes.

Cat toys. From wand toys to batting and kicking toys, there's a toy out there to match your cat's play style. Wand toys give you a chance to play with your cat, while batting and kicking toys are great for your cat to entertain his or herself.

Catnip. Not all cats like catnip but for those who do, out! A catnip-filled toy will keep your cat entertained for quite a while.

Catio. Replace the "p" with a "c" and you have an enclosed, outdoor space for cats! Catios can be just a wire dog kennel placed on your porch or an elaborate enclosure with climbing shelves and hiding spots for your cat to enjoy while staying safe outside.

Entertaining your indoor cat benefits you too. Watching your cat react to the birds out the window, getting your cat's prey drive to kick in with the movements of a wand toy, enjoying an evening sitting outside with your cat on the catio -- ...all these moments go a long way to filling your day with joy.

Get inspired by typing "catio" and "cat wall perch" into your search engine for images of DIY and pre-built catios and perches.

Laura Atwood is the public relations coordinator for the Anchorage Animal Care and Control.

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