Thinking inside the Box
For over a year, UPS, FedEX, Amazon and many others have been delivering packages to our homes in unprecedented numbers. While we may have looked forward to receiving our packages, our feline friends have reveled in their arrivals. Nothing appeals to cat more than an empty box. Small or large, it is something new and something to be explored by sniffing around it and then taking the leap in to claim it as theirs.
We have all seen the photos on the internet and heard the saying “If I fit, I sits”. They are all about cats and boxes (whether they fit or not). Cats have a fascination with boxes and that is great for us as owners. The box can be a fun and inexpensive toy for our cats. Throw a sponge ball or a squeaky mouse toy in and the noise creates a new level of interest. Batting these around inside the box provides exercise and amusement for your cat. Cut out a few windows or flaps in the box that are large enough for paws to move in and out easily and you have a new level of excitement. Get a long narrow box and you have a tunnel – a great advantage point for a sneak attack if they have siblings.
While boxes can provide fun did you also know that they are a great tool in helping a shy or frightened cat? When taking home a new cat or kitten, our volunteers often recommend “the box” as a way to make your new family member comfortable in their surroundings. A box turned on its side that has a deep enough interior and lined with a blanket gives your timid baby a place to feel secure and safe. The four sides provide a feeling of being protected. Since this is his or hers safe place, never intrude upon it by pulling them out. You can sit beside the box and talk gently to them allowing them to know this is their sanctuary.
Cardboard boxes are good insulators and provide warmth which is great for naptime. Cozy and warm, you just can’t beat that combo!
So next time a delivery comes, hold onto that box because your furry friend will happily take it over.
***Please check out this link on how to safely prepare a box for your cat https://holidaybarn.com/blog/why-do-cats-like-boxes/. Yes, it can be an issue if staples are left in or tape is left on them.
***See other links for information on boxes
Article and photo by Patti Altridge