Leading cat welfare charity wants owners to engage in ‘Purrfect Play Every Day’ for International Cat Day
Co-ordinator of International Cat Day and pioneering cat welfare charity, International Cat Care (iCatCare), recommends that cat owners take five minutes a day to play with their cats to improve their physical health and mental wellbeing.
The campaign has been developed to encourage owners to play with each of their cats separately for at least five minutes every day with a wand toy, an activity that less than 30% of cat owners are currently engaging in (according to a recent survey conducted by the charity). Just like dogs need walking every day, cats need daily play to keep them active and happy. Wand toy play provides cats with a safe outlet to perform natural behaviours and has many benefits, including:
- Reduced hunting behaviour (by up to 25% in some studies)1
- Increased mental stimulation
- Encourages exercise and helps to maintain a healthy bodyweight
- Reduction in problem behaviours (such as destroying household items)2
- Strengthening of the human-animal bond
- Improved quality of life2
iCatCare will be sharing expert advice on the purrfect toys, how best to play with cats of all ages, plus, tips and tricks for safe play with the whole family. The two-week social media campaign, ‘Purrfect Play Every Day’, will launch on 1 August, leading up to International Cat Day (8 August) and beyond, inspiring owners to make playing with their cats a daily habit.
Sarah Ellis, Head of Cat Mental Wellbeing and Behaviour at iCatCare said: “The benefits to our cats of playing with them are really impressive, both in terms of their physical health and their mental wellbeing. We know cat lovers want to do their best by their cats and we are therefore excited to help everyone spend 5 minutes on a daily basis playing with their cat with a wand toy. It’s definitely something cats will thank us for!”
To join the Purrfect Play Every Day campaign, follow @icatcare on social media, tag us in your posts and use #InternationalCatDay and #PurrfectPlay. For more information, visit: https://icatcare.org/international-cat-day/
1. Cecchetti M, et al. Provision of High Meat Content Food and Object Play Reduce Predation of Wild Animals by Domestic Cats Felis catus, Current Biology, 2021; 31 (5): 1107-1111. Available from: https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960982220318960
2. Henning J, et al. Cats just want to have fun: Associations between play and welfare in domestic cats, Animal Welfare, 2023; 32 (e9): 1-11. Available from: https://www.cambridge.org/core/services/aop-cambridge-core/content/view/03F9B841EFF468344BC1B0D01D37CBC6/S0962728623000027a.pdf/div-class-title-cats-just-want-to-have-fun-associations-between-play-and-welfare-in-domestic-cats-div.pdf
About International Cat Care (iCatCare)
International Cat Care is a pioneering cat welfare charity. Since 1958 we’ve challenged cruelty, ignorance and misunderstanding to affect positive change in the lives of cats. With an estimated global population of 600 million cats, half of which are thought to be unowned, our work has never been more important.
The International Cat Care vision: A cat friendly world where each cat, owned and unowned, is treated with respect, compassion and understanding.
The International Cat Care mission: To enable more people to act in a cat friendly way to improve cat welfare.
iCatCare’s Cat Friendly Principles are available for download here.