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Practical cat toys

Cat toys aren’t all for fun. Did you know cat toys can help stimulate a cat’s natural instincts and help them lose weight? Here are some everyday practical cat toy ideas.

Practical cat toys

When we think of cat toys with a purpose, what comes to mind? For me, it’s a laser pointer or stuffed mouse toy. While those may be great, we know cats also like toys with different textures, some even preferring crinkly or squeaky options. Before spending lots of money on toys your pet is going to ignore, let’s take a look at options that are designed to engage, entertain, and stimulate these hunters.

Natural Instinct

By nature, cats have a tendency to play with items that are shaped like their natural prey—mice. The Play N Squeak Mouse Hunter and Friends 4-pack from Pet Zone includes toys that are sure to keep your cat entertained all day. Each toy includes a squeaky stuffed mouse designed to sound like the real deal, a door attachment, floor toy, and two life-size stuffed mice toys for solo play or time with you. If you have multiple cats at your house, this is an especially good value and gives your pet(s) options.

We’d be remiss if we didn’t talk about the ever-stimulating string on a stick! While you can create your own, there are affordable options available online like the Cat Dancer Chaser 6-pack. If you’re environmentally conscious, you will be happy to know these toys are made in a solar-powered factory in Wisconsin. When it comes to giving your cat toys to stimulate exercise, these brightly colored pieces of fleece are a great option.


As natural hunters, cats crave the challenge of working for a reward. The Catit Design™ Senses 2.0 Digger feeds their curiosity and natural instinct. Made of BPA-free plastic, it is easy to clean for you and easy to use for your cat. Add kibble or treats in a series of tubes and watch your cat sniff and paw for reward. If your companion co-operates, it can make for a fun party trick! Not only that, but Senses 2.0 toys can be combined to make a sweet play area.

If you have multiple cats or crave interaction with them, consider the Petstages Tower of Tracks that includes three levels of tracks and balls for hours of fun. Cats love batting the brightly colored balls that tests their hunting instincts while keeping them busy. Give them an extra challenge when you control the spinning balls!

Fighting Feline Obesity

While it is good to stimulate your cat’s natural instinct to hunt, activity is important for their overall health, including weight maintenance. If you’re worried about your cat’s weight or have been told by the vet that your cat needs to be more active, there are toys to stimulate their natural instincts and keep them moving like the motorized Bumper Mouse from Petlinks. This battery-operated live mouse simulator will get your feline chasing and pouncing while burning the calories.

If your pet is less active, stimulate movement and slow feeding pace by utilizing an interactive feeder or treat puzzle to engage and reward your cat’s mind and body. Instead of placing food in a bowl, try the food tree 2.0 by Catit or the Egg-cersizer Interactive Dispenser which gives a treat or kibble in small portions. Slowing down the intake of food or treats is easier on your cat’s stomach and helps control obesity.

Fun & Entertaining

If you want to be sure your cat is happy, give them a bit of catnip to stimulate their brain. Not all cats react the same with some playing and others relaxing. Either way, the effect doesn’t last too long and isn’t harmful. Catnip is available in many forms including the Yeowww! Catnip Toy, Yellow Banana. Filler-free and made with durable cotton, cat owners report hours of fun and entertainment for their pets with this affordable toy.

Speaking of entertainment, have you given your cat crinkle toys? From simple crinkly balls that look like something off a holiday tree to crinkly stuffed animals and mats, including the sweet cat paradise of a crinkle mat with catnip inside, or the SmartyKat Crackle Chute Collapsible Tunnel Cat Toy, cat lovers report hours of fun, exercise, and entertainment for - and with - their pet.

These cat toys with a purpose give your beloved pet hours of stimulation and feed their natural instincts to pursue, pounce, and hunt. Here’s to keeping your favorite feline entertained!

Anne McAuley Lopez is a professional blogger and the founder of Blogging Badass. Since 2010, she has worked with clients to create content that tells the story of their business and connects them to their target market. It could be argued that she knows entirely too much about termites, retirement planning, court reporting, Alaskan fishing and mining, and social media—which makes her a great blogger and trivia night partner. When she’s not showing off her mad skillz, Anne can be found spending time with her husband, watching romantic comedies, eating tacos, or walking her dog.

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