The Feline Online: Cat Games

Cat Games Test Subject
The test subject

I often joke to my husband that my cat, Laila, must be wanting to get online given how often she lies on my laptop.  This got me thinking…  What can cats actually do online?  I already know there’s cat music but what else?  Cat games.  Yes, online games for cats.   This afternoon I went to YouTube in search of free online cat games and easily found many.

People really have thought of everything.  I play games on my phone so why shouldn’t my cat?  Are these games really geared towards cats or is it just something that us humans think is cute?  With the one cat subject I had on hand, we conducted our own tests of 4 different cat games.  Here’s what we found.

Cat Games: Online Laser Game for Cats

Laila and I regularly play the laser game.  It’s probably our favorite type of interactive play.  She routinely responds well to it by running and jumping to attack the elusive laser.  I thought this would be her favorite of the online games for cats.  From her reaction, it wasn’t.  It kept her attention but she didn’t do anything other than look at the screen.  Not bad, but I think we can do better.

Cat Games: Online Mouse Game for Cats

This game had about the same interest level for Laila as the laser game.  It kept her interest for a while but there was no real interaction.  Kind of underwhelming. I still think we can do better.

Cat Games: Online Fish Game for Cats

This was Laila’s least favorite.  She followed the action on the screen for a little while.  She got bored quickly and looked away from the screen much sooner than with any of the other online cat games.  If I had to score based on Laila’s reaction, I would say this one was the worst.  The contrast between the fish and background wasn’t as high as the other games.  If she can’t see it well, how can she play?  Queue up the video evidence:

Cat Games: Online String Game for Cats

Hands down, this is the best online cat game according to Laila.  It’s the only one she lunged at.  I think the video says it all:

If it was a real string it would be in her mouth RIGHT now.  The movement was erratic and kept her attention the longest culminating in one final blow.

From our extensive and very scientific tests, we determined that the best online games for cats have a white screen and erratic movement.  Thinner (string) and smaller (laser) is better.  A cat game needs something at the start to get their attention like cat or bird sounds.  If there’s no attention-catching sound, you end up tapping the screen and pointing to get them to watch.  Cats don’t understanding pointing or tapping really so you end up feeling like an idiot.

Turns out that having your cat play online games can be fun for both human AND cat.  It was hilarious when Laila went for that string.  But, online games for cats don’t provide a lot of exercise or variety.  Don’t make them your only enrichment for your cat.  The more enrichment you can provide, the happier your cat will be.  The next time I’m feeling lazy and don’t feel like playing our interactive laser game, I will try one of these instead.

Have you tried any online games for cats?  What’s your cat’s favorite?  Let me know in the comments.


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