Monday, December 17, 2012
Holiday Shopping for Your Cat
When it comes to the holidays, our pets are part of the family and are becoming more commonly part of the gift-giving experience. Frankly, I've always done this, when I a dog owner and now with my cat. You can see a photo of my girl here for the first time. Although she's on my website, this is my cat's first appearance on my blog. Aimee is a 13-year-old Chartreux and she's my little angel girl. How could I not include her in holiday celebrations?!
Whether she's getting toys, treats or perhaps a piece of kitty furniture like a scratching post or a kitty hammock chair, she gets a gift.
Photo Copyright: Veronique Schejtman
In a survey done this year by TEMPTATIONS treats for cats, nearly half of all cat owners (46%) reported that they were going to shop for their pet for the holidays. The gift is either a toy or treats but the owners think their cats would prefer treats even though 84.9% of cat owners will opt to purchase a toy. Obviously, both are good gifts.
It's no secret that treats can be overdone. You don't want kitty to gain weight. But kitty, like us, needs to have something special. You just need to be aware of how many treats your cat gets each day, working in that amount with the amount of food kitty gets for the day so that you're not overfeeding your cat.
Treats are a great reward when you train your cat. Some cats work for treats, some for a favorite toy and some for affection. Using operant conditioning (clicker training) you can train your cat to do anything a dog can do. And treats and clicker training are also a great way to train shelter cats which makes their life more interesting and makes them more adoptable. And did you know that your cat can do agility? (http://http://www.catagility.com) Yes, there is cat agility and whether or not you enter a competition, you can have fun practicing at home.
It doesn't take long for your cat to learn, and one word that quickly becomes part of a cat's vocabulary is "treat." Aimee comes running when I ask her if she wants a treat. Hers go on levels of her cat tree when we're not doing some training, so she has to climb and get some exercise.
According to the TEMPTATIONS survey, women (48.7%) are more likely than men (42.6%) to consider their cat when shopping for holiday gifts. But, interestingly, the majority of gift-buying men (38.3%) will spend from $11 - $20 on their cat while the majority of gift-buying women (38.3%) estimate that they spend between $6 - $10 on their kitty.
Cat training obviously helps build the bond between kitty and person. Adding a treat can enhance the experience.
We have a special contest thanks to the nice people at TEMPTATIONS. Your can win a pet stocking filled with treats and toys! To enter, send me a message via my website (http://www.darlenearden.com). The winner will be announced this Thursday, December 20th. Hopefully, that will be enough time to get the stocking to the winner in time for Christmas. I know your kitty will love it whenever it arrives!