Although we may equate spoiling with gifts or expensive spa days, cats are much simpler creatures. They really only need the basics in life and once those are covered, there’s not much you need to buy to go above and beyond to pamper them. Just a few simple things will make them feel like they’re the luckiest cat in the world.
NO-MONEY-NEEDED WAYS TO SPOIL YOUR CAT
These are options to spoil and pamper your cat without having to spend a dime.
LOVE & ATTENTION
Once your cat’s basic needs are met (food, water, shelter, and a clean place to go to the washroom), the thing they want to be spoiled with the most is your love and attention.
No matter how much time you devote to them already, your cat could always use more. You’re likely their entire world, especially if they’re an indoor cat and you live alone, so the more of you they get, the happier they are.
Spend more time at home with them and give them your attention when you are there. How many times do you just sit with your cat without the TV or your phone to distract you. Sure, your cat likes it when you’re simply around, but they like it even more when they have your undivided attention.
BUILD THEM A FORT
Cats love enclosed spaces, so you could grab some pillows and a blanket and build them a fort on the couch. Just be sure other family members know there’s a cat in there so they don’t startle your cat by ripping off the blanket or leaning into the pillows. You also want to be sure it’s sturdy enough that it won’t cave in on your cat.
You may also find a cat-sized box and fill it with their favorite blanket. There’s something about boxes that cats love.
BRUSH AND/OR MASSAGE THEM
If you have a cat brush, take some time to gently brush them and save them some grooming time or get those hard-to-reach areas like behind their ears or back of the neck.
You may also use your hands to gently massage them. Your cat will let you know where they do and do not want to be touched, but generally, a nice gentle head, neck and shoulder massage will relax and pamper them. If they start to purr or close their eyes, you know you’ve got the technique down.
You don’t need to buy fancy toys to pamper your cat, you can make a toy out of almost anything; as long as it doesn’t pose a choking hazard to your cat.
My cat’s favorite toys were usually packaging elements he found before we threw them in the trash or recycled them. When we purchased a new toy for him, he was more interested in the twist tie than he was the actual toy. He loved when we created a ring with it and threw it across the room for him. He would play fetch until he was done, at which point, he would bring it to his food or water dish and drop it in.
A piece of ribbon, a balled-up piece of paper, your hand moving under a blanket…your cat doesn’t really care how much a toy costs or how trendy it is, they just enjoy playtime with you.
If you really want to spoil your cat, increase how much time you spend playing with them each day. It’s great to keep your cat young at heart and constantly stimulated.
A CLEAN LITTER BOX
Yes, this shouldn’t be considered spoiling your cat, but most cat owners don’t clean and change the litter often enough. Cats like to be clean and have clean spaces. They’re also unable to clean the litter box themselves, so they really appreciate it when you keep it clean for them.
Get yourself in the habit of scooping their litter at least once a day, maybe more if you have multiple cats. How often you need to change the litter will depend on the type of litter you use, but typically between 1 – 4 weeks. Here’s a guide to keeping your cats litter box nice and clean, covering all the common questions.
It’s also important to clean the litter box each time you change the litter to help the box stay smelling fresh and prevent bacteria from growing. Don’t use any strong-smelling soaps or bleach, as your cat won’t like that.
You may also consider pampering you cat by purchasing a more natural litter (such as paper pellets). Clumping clay litters are convenient for humans to use, because they’re cheap and easy to scoop. But they’re often dusty and it’s not healthy for your cat to breath in that dust as they dig around, or to lick the litter out of their toes when it gets stuck in there.
Be sure to introduce the new litter slowly by mixing just 1/3 of the new litter into the type of litter they’re used to. Gradually even out the ratio, then use more new litter than their usual litter, and then you can completely swap the new litter in. It may take your cat some time to get used to it, but it will be better for their long-term health.
There are a few ways to spend a little extra money on your cat and spoil them every day. These are still practical ways to spoil your cat, but your cat is sure to love the upgrades.
WET CAT FOOD
To pamper your cat and look after their long-term health, consider feeding them a wet food diet…raw food may be even better. Talk to your veterinarian before changing your cat’s diet, especially if they have existing conditions.
However, wet food is almost always recommended over dry kibble as it’s more suitable for a cat’s digestive system. In the wild, cats are carnivores, and they eat high protein, low carb diets.
Dry cat food is full of filler, to make it cheaper, and that filler is often grains, such as wheat, which a cat’s body isn’t built to digest.
Raw cat food typically has a better protein/carb ratio and will be lower carb than dry cat food. Wet cat food that’s isn’t a raw meat mixture, isn’t always low-carb, but it does have more moisture to help keep your cat hydrated, which is important to their health.
Cats love Temptation treats and a lot of the treats we eat. They may frantically cry at you for just a taste, but we have to take their overall health into account and how something might make them feel after.
We know what it feels like to eat a tub of ice cream or too many French fries. It’s incredibly satisfying in the moment, but we’re typically left with a stomach ache moments later (maybe worse).
Your cat may feel the same way after you let them dig into your ice cream with you, and they can’t even reach for the Pepto Bismol. We don’t want our kitties to feel that way after trying to treat them.
So if you really want to spoil your cat, find a healthy, natural, low-carb, high animal protein treat and give it to them in moderation.
CAT WATER FOUNTAIN
Cats aren’t big water drinkers by nature, since in the wild, they would get most of the water from the prey they eat. However, when they do drink water, they likely prefer it the same way we like ours; cold, fresh, and clean. You can spoil them with that type of water by getting a cat water fountain.
A cat water fountain can help keep water clean and fresh by circulating the water through the built-in filter. Most fountains don’t keep the water cold, but the constant movement of the water does help it stay a little cooler than still water.
Cats generally aren’t too picky about where they sleep, but growing up with cats, I’ve found they almost always love sleeping in some sort of a “box” that’s maybe just a little bit too small and hugs their sides. They also love to be in the sunlight. If you buy them a comfy bed they can sink into and place it in a sunny spot, they’re sure to enjoy it.
This is one of the more popular styles of cat beds on the market:
But, if your cat loves boxes, they may love a style like this one (and you may prefer the look of it in your home, rather than a cardboard box):
Or a smaller, tent style bed:
SAVE THEIR FRIENDS
Sure, your cat may not want you to bring all the cats home with you, they likely want you all to themselves. But I’m sure they would appreciate you donating to a local cat shelter to help save some of their (step) brothers and sisters.
Consider making a donation so more cats can be “spoiled” with the basic necessities.
I hope this article has given you some ideas on how to spoil your cat 🙂