We all know our furry little friends are adorable and dependable, but we are also aware that all cats are predators at heart. But they are also naturally wary of larger, more predatory creatures than themselves, and thus they absolutely love hiding and even playing hide and seek with us, their beloved owners!
Playing hide and seek is great for their health and enrichment, along with things like feeding them top quality food, providing safe shelter for them and acquiring comprehensive cat insurance.
So, let’s look a little further at why your kitty loves to hide and why it’s so important for them to have a great hiding spot!
What’s it all about?
Cats may act tough and independent, but they are also afraid of being attacked. Therefore, they feel super safe and comfortable when they find a spot they can hide in for a while. A safe spot to hide provides them with the comfort that they are not at risk of being attacked in their sleep, therefore making a super cosy place to rest their whiskered heads!
Don’t underestimate the power of play. Cats need play sessions to engage their minds and exercise their bodies. We all know cats enjoy a good catnip-filled mouse now and then, but those stuffed toys can get old fast. If you want to shake things up a bit, here are some fun new ways to play with your cat.
Cats find hiding spots all over the house: under the bed, in a cupboard, in a box etc. and they quickly become familiarised with their new digs, filling it with their scent and getting uber comfy there in no time. But they don’t only take up a little spot of real estate for hiding purposes: cats are very independent creatures and like a little alone time just like their humans, and a hiding spot makes the perfect place for them to do so.
They are important for a cat’s new home
Hiding spots are important for cats to feel comfortable in their new home. Obviously, when a cat comes to a new home, there is either going to be one or multiple people entering the cat’s life. Cats can become quite stressed by all these new faces and personalities and certainly need a spot where they can duck off to rest and alleviate some of the anxiety that comes with a new home.
It’s good to provide alternative options
Cats might immediately try and make a hiding spot from under the bed or behind a couch – this probably isn’t the best idea. You don’t want your cat to become accustomed to such unreachable, anti-social hiding spots as they might not learn to socialise properly.
Instead, it’s a good idea to provide them with a safe and healthy option for where they can feel safely enclosed when they want to relax or sleep. You can even provide them with multiple options: a cat cave in the living room, a cardboard box (with towel partially covering the entrance) in the foyer – the choice is yours and your kitten’s! This way, your cat can have multiple relaxation spots whilst not completely shutting themselves off from their new home.
Finally, if you have multiple cats, numerous hiding spots are a very good idea. Why? Because if you have a dominant cat that likes to chase or bully the other cat then they can simply retreat to a safe and enclosed space where they can have some time to themselves without worrying about the dominant cat.
Of course, it is encouraged that you work to sort out the differences between the dominant cat and the more subservient one – but providing one with spots that it can relax and unwind will, in the meantime, create a more pleasant atmosphere for that cat to become more comfortable.