Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Da Bird in Da Dark

bean_dark

 Ever since Bean's last visit to the vet we've been focused on giving her lots of exercise each day.  Things started off slow, and we found it challenging to keep her engaged in play for long.  It's always like this when we try to get back into the fitness groove.  In time, it always gets better,  the length of the sessions gets longer,  her muscles get stronger, she jumps higher and seems to enjoy it all more.

I break out her current favorite toy, Da Bird, four times a day.   Usually, I can get her to play for 8 to 10 minutes each session during the day, but in the evening, around 9 or 10 o'clock,  she really gets going and we'll play for 20 minutes, or so.  

The other night, when it was time to get out Da Bird, I was in my pajamas and the blinds were up.  So the neighbors wouldn't see our show,  I shut off the lights in the living room and dining room, leaving only a small light in the kitchen on.

I swished Da Bird in the air, Bean charged and dove for it.  She was jumping so high, giving it her all, and we played for a good 45 minutes straight ( with an occasional pause so she could catch her breath). It was clear that she was having the time of her life.

The next night I turned off the lights again and we had a repeat performance.

Who knew??!!! She prefers playing in the dark!  Cats do hunt at night, so it does make sense that she would prefer chasing Da Bird in low light conditions.  

So, ever since this discovery last week, this is how we play, and I can hardly believe the difference it's making.  She's staying engaged longer and having so much fun!

If you're having a hard time inspiring your cat to play, maybe try flipping the switch!  If you do, let me know who kitty responds.  I'm curious!


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19 comments:

  1. Who knows what evil lurks in Da Bird...only The Shadow of Charlene knows,da,da,daaaa.

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  2. Totally going to try that with Lola! She loves to escape into my condo hallway and GALLOP to the other end (so funny to see her belly wobble, haha). But indoors in the dark will be a new challenge...thanks for the inspiration!

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  3. She is such a pretty kitty, that Bean!

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  4. My understanding is that cats see better in twilight and in darkness than we do. Here's a fascinating look on how cats see under various conditions compared to humans

    http://www.businessinsider.com/pictures-of-how-cats-see-the-world-2013-10

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  5. That's a great idea! Will have to try it.

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  6. That's really interesting and I will certainly try it with our two cats.

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  7. Maraboo prefers to play with her feathered wand in the evening, so I'm totally going to try this! Our little part-Manx has a body like a '57 Chevy and could benefit from dropping a few pounds.

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  8. Way to go Bean and thanks for the tip Laurie! I'm definitely going to try it out with Charley tonight. I often hear him tear around at night chasing his fave toys, so this totally makes sense.

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  9. Great idea! Definitely going to try it with my very active little cat Fergus tonight!

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  10. WOW - 45 minutes?! That's amazing! I'm definitely going to try this too.

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  11. That's a great idea. I'm going to try that with The Bisse and Shams.

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  12. Interesting! Will try with Bad Kitten and see if it helps tire Mister Demolition Man out more. :)

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  13. I'll try it. My two are sitting here now.
    Lights off!

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  14. Oh, this is *the best* story and tip. Thank you, Bean and Laurie. Haven't tried it yet, but I will. :D

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  15. Bless you for suggesting this, Laurie! Last night I tried it with Precious, who is a pound or so over her preferred weight. We played for about 15 minutes- much longer than our usual session of 5 or so minutes! We will make this part of our nighttime routine! Thanks again!

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  16. I've definitely noticed this with my kitties. I feel like the string attached to their "prey" disappears more in the near-dark, and I think that makes it more exciting!

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