20 (Fun & Original!) Games To Play With Your Cat or Kitten

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Looking for fun games to play with your kitten? Different games to play with your cat? Want to keep them happy, engaged and entertained, whilst further strengthening your bond? Then here’s 20 of the very best games to play with your furry friend – starting with the standard games and moving onto ones you (most likely!) have never thought of or heard of before. (Eek!)

Benefits Of Playing With Your Cat

Did you know that, “one hour of play increases a cat’s healthy lifespan by four hours?!” Crazy huh? The simple power of play! But it’s as fundamental to cats, as it is so children. See playing with your cat also:

  • improves a cats mental health – reducing anxiety and boredom, whilst preventing depression.
  • reduces destructive behaviour or behavioural issues.
  • encourages the natural prey stalking instincts in cats, which helps them stay mentally fit and stimulated.
  • builds the bond between family members and (where applicable), other cats, which in turn, beats loneliness.
  • reduces weight gain, preventing future health problems.

Different Games To Play With Your Cat

With this in mind, it’s a great idea to look for different games to play with your cat, so that you’re able to keep mixing things up and keep play-time engaging! So, let’s get stuck in with these top 20 games and activities, shall we?

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Top 20 Games To Play With Your Cat

In no particular order, here’s some of our all-time favourites games to play with your cat…

1) Cat Wand Chase

So first up, one of the best games to play with your cat (that almost every cat can get into!) is a wand chase game.

This can be with feather wands, ribbon wands, fluffy toy wands, and even interactive toy wands that make noises. Wands can either come on elastic, or with a fishing line.

Fishing line wand teasers tend to move a little faster, whereas elastic cat wands are a little gentler (and just as good!) We personally have both types and alternate to prevent boredom, as we’re then able to mix them up!

The great thing about these – is they provide great fun, pretty endlessly.

They get you running around, running your cat around – up & down hallways, stairs, over furniture, up cat trees. And even just up and down in the air to get your cat jumping, diving & pouncing! It’s brilliant!

For this reason, the Cat Wand Chase is an absolute must when it comes to games to play with your cat.

Just make sure you allow them to sit with it, regularly, whilst playing it with them, to that they get the satisfaction of a successful “hunt” from it (and also have that all-important breather in between chasing, too!)

Then, when you can play with them no more, grab a set like this which includes suction pads so you can dangle the wand on the ceiling, window or wall, so your cat can continue to play with it themselves! It’s genius really, and a great way to keep your cat occupied and active!

2) Catch The Mouse

Another similar game is “Catch The Mouse.” It doesn’t actually have to be a mouse – it can be any furry toy animal.

Again, move the muse around to bring the toy to life, making it more fun for them to play with. It’s a great game to play with your cat when they’re kind of sleepy, or getting more tired, but you want to keep them entertained.

You can play it whilst sat on the sofa (or similar), chilling out with a little down-time.

Alternatively, you may like to grab a Remote Control Mouse Toy, and whiz this around for them instead! This makes it more active for them, but still easy for you! Likewise on this note…

Games To Play With Your Cat

3) Chase The Laser!

Now the laser chasing game is a little controversial. Some cats love it, others aren’t interested in it, and some get worked up by it. But the thing is – there’s a “right way” to play the laser chase game with your cat, so that they don’t need to miss out if they do enjoy it. Simply:

  • Grab a cat laser pen.
  • Use it once it goes dark. (The darker the better actually, so lights off, during the night!)
  • Get your cat chasing after it – jumping on the wall, running across the carpet, diving in their cat house (you can make your own DIY cardboard cat house whilst you’re at it, here, actually!), and up their cat climbing trees!
  • It’s great exercise and great fun. But here comes the essential part that many people miss out…
  • Every time you do a chase, end the chase by shining the light on a specific spot, placing a treat on that end spot, and switching the light off when they get to it. This creates the effect of a successful hunt and prevents any built up frustration!

4) Run & Ruffle

Next up, we’ve got “Run & Ruffle” which is a totally flexible game that simply entails some sort of ruffling!

So it could be ruffling some newspaper or moving a toy / your fingers underneath it.

Or, it could be ruffling your feet under the bedsheets. (This is always a good one. It works similar to this SmartyKat Electronic Motion Toy if you’re looking for toys cats can play with by themselves.)

Cats can’t resist not only the movement – but the sound, which is why it’s a great way to get them engaged, moving and going after their “prey”.

5) Cat Ping Pong

And now we have… drum roll please… Cat Ping Pong, which is one of the most GENIUS cat games of all time!

Is it the same as “Human Ping Pong”? Well no, not when you play it in the bathtub like I recommend. But it it is utilising ping pong balls and getting your cat knocking it back and forth.

Here, watch our Cody play Ping Pong in the Bath Tub for the first time (it’s super sweet!):

It keeps them fit, healthy, and you can get them into it by playing it with them however you’ll then find – if they like it – they’ll keep going back to it to play it with themselves too! (Happy cat, happy life!)

6) Bubble Pop

Did you know, you can actually get cat-friendly bubbles? Uh huh, it says, “catch them, pop them, or stack them on the ground!”

The best part? You can even get Cat Nip Bubbles to entice your cat to play with them even more!

It’s pretty clever and totally different. Well worth trying if you’re looking for different games to play with your cat.

7) Throw & Catch

Next up, we’ve got Throw & Catch, and I bet you didn’t expect to see this as one of the games to play with your cat. But that’s what it’s all about – trying different things. As there’s actually more games you can play than you may think.

To play Throw & Catch, simply grab some cat toy crinkle balls, pom poms, or any light, soft cat ball toys that you know they like going after.

You then hold it in the air, wait until they’re watching and engaged, then throw it towards them and see if they can catch it.

BONUS: Or… Fetch!

If your cat / kitten is anything like our little Maine Coon, they’re likely to also bring it back to you, so it turns into a game of fetch! It’s very sweet, and entertaining to watch, too. Here, see for yourselves, with our Cody in action:

Fun Games To Play With Your Cat

8) TAG!

TAG is another great game you can play with your cat. That’s right – the school ground, “Tag, you’re it!” game.

Now it depends on your cats personality / nature, but if they’re full of energy, you can actually get them running around, chasing you – just like in the TAG game! (Here, watch this cute video of someone else playing it!)

Simply run around with them, tap them, then run off and hide. They’ll most likely come to find you if they stay in their playful mood, or are the kind of cat that likes to be around you. Then, once they have, the game starts again!

9) Hide & Seek

Similarly, another game you can play with your cat is Hide & Seek! This can be done in two ways:

1) Playing Hide & Seek With Them

So you hide, and your cat has to find you. This works best if they’re a dog-like cat (like ours!) and gets very excitable, following you around anyway!

2) Playing Hide & Seek With Things

If not, the alternative is to hide toys or treats, as you can then give them a little help with finding it if they need! This is best done in just one room, so it makes them easier to sniff them out!

You can get well into character – pretending to be the mouse and popping it in and out! It’s quite fun actually and very entertaining! (And no, it doesn’t make you a “crazy cat lady!” 😛 … Which by the way, is a silly stereotype anyway!)

10) Cat Feeder Toys

Talking of hiding things, as we reach the half way point for games to play with your cat, we have to throw in some cat feeder toys. Here, watch this tutorial of the simplest cat feeder toy you can make (which costs you next to nothing!):

As you’ll see, your cat will love playing with the toy as much as they like getting the treats (if not more!)

So this is an especially great game to play with your cat if they love their food (don’t we all?!) but you want to make them work for it a little. Stepping it up a notch, we’ve also got…

11) Cat Feeder Puzzles

If you’re looking for games that stimulate your cat mentally more than physically, then cat feeder puzzles are the way to go.

Once they get into them, you can leave your cat to work the puzzles out by themselves. But initially, it’s great to have you there with them, to give them a little encouragement / a helping hand… Plus it’s super fun and cute to watch!

I recommend these cat feeder puzzles: For a Simpler Cat Feeder Puzzle / For a More Advanced Cat Feeder Puzzle.

Simply set them up and see how they get on. You could even set a timer to see if they get faster at finding their biscuits / treats each time; or set a bet amongst friends / family to see how fast they can get them all. (That always makes it more exciting!)

12) Whack a Mole Cat Game

Some of the best games to play with your cat, come about by taking”human games” and adapting them… And that’s exactly what’s been done with Whack a Mole (the Cat Game!)

I love this as you move the mole, and your cat “whacks” it. It’s very interactive and is literally a two-player cat-vs-human game to play, which is pretty unique!

13) Cat High Jump Game

Talking of unique – have you ever played the Cat High Jump Game? You can actually make it any type of “jump” really – high jump, long jump, the lot. Regardless, the concept is the same!

  • Simply set different levels, and see how high your cat can jump!
  • So if you use a stick – you’d place it between a doorway and make it higher each time.
  • If you’re getting your cat to try to jump on objects – you make these higher each time.

It’s simple, easy, and fun for both you and your cat! Here, watch how these guys play it if you’re feeling unsure. You can grab your own cat hurdles here if you really want to go “all out” with it!

This is one of the most popular cat challenges… That along with the Toilet Roll Wall Jump Challenge, which is one of the ones that we gave a go! Here, have a watch! (There’s different versions of the Jumping Challenge Game that you can do, based on what you have, yous see.)

Different Games To Play With Your Cat

15) Cat Shell Game

Another cool and simple game to play with your cat, is the Cat Shell Game. Here, you just need 3 cups.

You put a treat under one, show your cat which one it’s going under, rotate the cups around, and have them tap the cup they think the treat is under, to try to get it. (Smart – I know!)

Now this does, of course, take training, but it’s super cool once you can get them to that point! Similarly…

14) Obstacle / Assault Course

Next up, a great game to play with your cat (especially if you’re looking to fill a rainy afternoon one day!) is to make an obstacle / assault course to then put your cat through their paces!

It’s a great way to exercise your cat and is likely to really mix things up from the usual games you play with them.

Here, you can go all out with creativity. Jumps, secret tunnels, things they need to knock over and things they need to avoid. I’ve even seen one obstacle course using dominoes, where the cat has to trigger them to all fall over!

But that’s the best part – you can have fun making it completely your own, and switch it up each time!

16) Teach Them a Trick

Next up, we’ve got cat training, and this may not be typically seen as a game to play with your cat – but it is when they enjoy it, and you get them doing fun stuff!

(The treats / rewards they get through it, unsurprisingly, go down a treat too!)

See, there’s plenty of fun & easy tricks to teach your cat. The trick is to start simple to begin with, then build it up and up.

It takes time (training them little and often) and patience too. But it’s well worth it and means you’re also getting short, snappy play-sessions in through it, at the same time! Talking of tricks…

17) Play Football With Your Cat

Did you know you can actually play football with your cat? Yep! It’s one of my favourite games to play with a cat as it’s so interactive… They can’t actually play it without you!

Here, watch our tutorial for how to play football with a cat & see Cody’s EPIC goal in the process!

Any ball games are great when playing with a cat. Flick them, bounce them, throw them. They then start flying around and you’ll have your cat or kitten sliding across the floor in no time!

Cat Pom Pom Balls are great for this actually. As are Foam Cat Balls. They’re two of my favourite cat balls, as they’re nice and soft for throwing… plus great for your cat to then “attack!”

18) Have a Splash Around In Water!

Now I know what you’re thinking… Yes, you’re looking for different games to play with your cat, but you didn’t think it would be THIS out there.

Don’t cats hate water?! Well, not all do. And they don’t actually have to get super wet to be able to play cat games with water.

See you can actually get these electronic fish toys that move around on water. So if your cat likes drinking from the tap, fill up your sink and pop these in. You can also get floating fish toys and move these around in there for them too.

At first, they may simply watch them, but by the end, they won’t be able to resist dunking their paw in to try to fish them out!

19) Computer Games To Play With Your Cat

Now we can’t get to the end of this list, with different games to play with your cat, without mentioning the fact that you can tap into the many cat games available online.

See, there are actually so many free games to keep your cat amused on your phone or tablet.

Your cat will be entertained as they attempt to catch their digital prey with a variety of moving fish, mice, and other tempting graphics like lasers. (Which is pretty clever, right?!)

Watch as your furry friend tries to paw their way through the screen. It’s something you can play with them too – tapping away, as they’ll need you to keep the screen on properly anyway.

But again, when you opt for computer games to play with your cat, it just adds a different element to play. It’s also nice and easy; not to mention budget friendly!

20) Completely Make Up Your Own

So you should now have heaps of different ideas for games to play with your cat.

As you give them a go, I also want to encourage you to tweak them, or make up your own. After all, that’s how some of the best cat games have and will come about!

Notice what kind of toys you cat likes, notice their style of play, see how they interact and engage.

See, you can turn almost anything into a game! One of Cody’s Grand”paw”rents – for example – lines all his toys up and races them. It’s hilarious, and totally brilliant!

So have fun with it. See what you can come up with and what flows.

There We Have It!

So that rounds up our top 20 games to play with your cat. We’ve finally come to the end of this list!

I hope this has given you lots of ideas and inspiration for different games to play with your cat… and you can now see, you don’t have to be limited to just the standard ones.

Mix it up. Have real fun with it. As it makes it far more fun for your cat then too!

Thanks for reading. Be sure to browse our articles for more!

Games To Play With Your Cat
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Ell is the Founder of Totally Purrfect & Cat Mom to Cody, The Maine Coon. Her areas of expertise lie in Cat Care, Enrichment & Training.

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