Kittens and younger cats are usually a bundle of energy. A kitten learns through play and needs guidance to make sure he has appropriate outlets for his energy – think toys, not curtains. Many cats will settle down quite a bit as they get older but there are some cats who never really grow out of it.
Cats seem to have picked up the reputation that they are lazy and just want to eat and sleep. The reality is that you essentially share your home with a small wild animal who needs to hunt, stalk and capture prey (toys make great prey).
Your cat needs daily interactive playtimes. High energy cats likely need at least two play sessions per day. Wand toys are especially useful for getting your cat to run, chase and jump. End each play session by letting your cat “kill” the toy, this will keep him feeling like an awesome hunter. Enrich your home – tall scratching posts, vertical space with a view, puzzle feeders or treats hidden around for your cat to find. He may also enjoy videos featuring birds or squirrels or you can find an app made to entertain cats.
Rotate your cat’s toys to keep him interested. Offer the occasional surprise like your latest box from Amazon or toilet paper tube with treats and catnip hidden inside.
If indoor playtimes are not enough, your cat may benefit from a daily walk. Many energetic cats will happily learn to use a harness and leash. If you have the yard space you can build a catio so your cat has safe outdoor access to keep him entertained.
Having another pet as a playmate is often a nice solution for social, energetic cats.
Unused energy can lead to sassy behavior. Energetic cats without appropriate outlets will often find their own outlets that may not be your first choice. If your cat is using his teeth or claws on you or grabbing your ankles when you walk past, he may just have pent up energy and is looking for an outlet. Be sure to incorporate play into your cat’s daily routine.
If his high energy makes him sensitive to being pet then be sure to pay close attention to his body language while petting. Avoid full body pets if your cat tends to bite (see Biting, Yikes).
Do not use your hands or feet as play things, this will encourage inappropriate biting and make it hard for your cat to feel comfortable when you are trying to simply pet them – use toys for playing and hands for petting.
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.