Safe at Home: A Guide to Maintaining Safety for You and Your Feline Companion Posted on February 1, 2024 As a cat owner to create a happy environment for both you and your feline friend it is important to prioritise safety measures within your home. Why even keep your cat inside? Two in three cat owners have lost a cat in a roaming-related accident; that is one of the many reasons why keeping cats safe from harm in their loving homes is essential. So, let’s delve into ways you can create a comfortable space at home for you and your four-legged friend: Stick to a Routine: Cats thrive on routine and structure, which can help reduce their stress levels and prevent behavioural issues. By having set feeding, play, and grooming times, cats can feel more secure and content. Additionally, maintaining a regular schedule can help prevent falls because the cat tends to stay calmer when it is familiar with a routine. Promote Gentle Interactions: Cat claws and teeth can cause injuries even through play. Encourage play with interactive toys, not your hands or feet. Let your cat initiate and choose interactions with you to create a mutually trusting relationship. Use their favourite treats to teach your cat to come when called and move where you would like them to be (for example if you would like them to move off your lap or bed). For more information: click here. Don’t Step Over Them and Clear Pathways: Avoid stepping over your cat as they can unexpectedly jolt or jump up and cause a fall. Gently walk around them or gently encourage them to move. Show them lots of love if they are helpful. Keep pathways and common areas free from potential obstacles, such as cat toys, food bowls, and other pet-related items that may cause tripping hazards. Provide Enrichment and Exercise: Engage your cat in regular play and exercise sessions to channel their energy and reduce the likelihood of impulsive behaviour that could pose a risk. Interactive toys and enriching activities can help fulfil your cat’s mental and physical needs while promoting a harmonious household environment. The good news is you can meet all your cat’s needs at home! Your cat’s at-home lifestyle can be full of enriching activities that keep them happy, healthy, fit, and active. Providing access to a secure outdoor area such as a catio or netted balcony can also be very beneficial. For more information on enrichment: click here. These are just a few safety measures for you and your feline companion, there are many more, so be sure to stay educated. If you are thinking of transitioning your cat inside visit www.rspcansw.org.au/keeping-cats-safe/ to learn more about how to give your cat a happy life safe at home.