5 Health Tips from Your Cat


Cats are good for your health. The Chicago Tribune recently reported that a 10-year study at the University of Minnesota Stroke Center found that cat owners were 40 percent less likely to have heart attacks than non-cat owners. According to research discussed in this news report, people with pets save the Australian health service about $880 million per year and save Germany about $6.6 billion per year.

There is much information out there about how to live healthier on the internet, in books and on television, but you may have one source of healthier living much closer than you think: your cat. I’m all about learning from our cats when it comes to living a conscious, happy life, so why not learn from them when it comes to our physical health?

Health Tips from Your Cat

1. Give unconditional love and support. 

Cats are masters at loving unconditionally. They’re always there for us with a purr or a snuggle, and they don’t expect much in return. I think we’d all be hard pressed to find this kind of love anywhere else in our lives.

2. Make sleep a priority.

We are a sleep deprived society. According to the National Sleep Foundation, we’ve managed to squeeze almost a month of additional work and commuting time into each year. Meanwhile, we’ve sacrificed 2 hours of sleep every night in order to keep up with the increased demands of our fast paced lives. On average, adults are  now sleeping only 7 hours per night as opposed to the 8 hours sleep specialists recommend. The average cat sleeps between 12 and 16 hours a day. And since you don’t see cats stressing out over their to do lists, they clearly know something we don’t.

3. Stretch often.

Stretching is an important part of healthy living: benefits range from increased flexibility and mobility to better athletic performance and decreased risk of injury. And who better to teach us the importance of stretching than our cats? Have you ever seen a cat get up from a nap without thoroughly stretching first?

4. Stick to a routine.

When the Dalai Lama was asked “if you only had one word to describe the secret of happiness, and of living a fulfilling and meaningful life, what would that word be,” he replied without hesitating: ”routines.” Cats are creatures of routine – maybe that’s why they’re so happy and content.

5. Listen to your body.

When cats are hungry, they eat. When they’re thirsty, they drink. When they’re tired, they take a nap. Humans tend to override their body’s needs with to do lists, deadlines, and projects, and they pay the price for disregarding the body’s  messages with stress-related problems.

What healthy habits have you learned from your cat?

Photo of Allegra with Reiki pyramid ©Ingrid King. Reiki can be an important part of a healthy lifestyle. For more information, please visit my Healing Hands website.

27 Comments on 5 Health Tips from Your Cat

  1. Sarah
    February 19, 2014 at 10:30 am (7 years ago)

    I’ve learned from my kitties that when you want affection there is no shame in asking for it!

  2. Chris
    February 19, 2014 at 8:26 am (7 years ago)

    I just want to say that number 3 should be taken with a grain of salt. There are several studies that suggest that stretching before certain activities or athletic performances can actually decrease performance and increase your risk of injury. Do some research and make sure that it’s healthy to stretch before the activities you take part in.

  3. Cindy
    August 5, 2013 at 9:49 am (8 years ago)

    Holly – don’t be afraid to throw your paws up and dance
    Chloe – sing in your loudest voice regardless of time (Siamese – lol)

  4. E
    August 1, 2013 at 6:49 pm (8 years ago)

    I’ve learned: Go ahead and try to make that jump! If you miss and fall, just act like nothing happened and keep moving. Or start grooming yourself.

  5. Janice Smith
    August 1, 2013 at 11:50 am (8 years ago)

    Four cats; four lessons:

    Mink -A big change really can improve your life.
    Klunky – Show utter devotion to at least one person in your life.
    Radar – Persistance pays off.
    Gizmo – It’s ok to act crazy once in awhile.

  6. betina
    August 1, 2013 at 10:47 am (8 years ago)

    Other tips I learned, stop and enjoy the nature around you, even if its only through a house window, and get some sunlight. My cats locve finding the sun pockets and sleeping in them.

  7. Christy
    August 1, 2013 at 10:40 am (8 years ago)

    So true!

    6. Make some time to play every day.

  8. Erwin
    August 1, 2013 at 9:51 am (8 years ago)

    Relax and have fun, really important. Cats will also only listen to you when you are relaxed 😀

  9. Bj Maples
    August 1, 2013 at 9:39 am (8 years ago)

    If someone took care of me like I take care of my cats I could sleep all day too. But if I did that would be labeled “Depression”. I think domestic cats sleep so much because they are Bored. All of their needs are met.

  10. mair price
    August 1, 2013 at 9:36 am (8 years ago)

    I did read somewhere that when cats purr , it is at a resonance low enough to promaote healing in people
    and my cat does follow a routine
    scream in my ear at 6 am for breakfast
    then scream at us until nearly midnight for mince
    he also keeps all the mice and rats away…..thus keeping nasty germs in and around our house/yard away

  11. becky Smith
    August 1, 2013 at 9:11 am (8 years ago)

    I have epilepsy and anxiety disorder and when I wake up sick my cat helps calm me by purring and encouraging me to relax and pet her.

    • Cindy
      August 5, 2013 at 9:46 am (8 years ago)

      Me too! My cat also seems to wake me when my fibro pain has peaked so I can take my meds. Probably I wake her though and she was unhappy with me 🙂

  12. Riverfront Cats
    July 2, 2013 at 2:03 pm (8 years ago)

    These are very helpful tips. Thank you for sharing them.

  13. Tom Randall
    July 2, 2013 at 11:15 am (8 years ago)

    Agree with all comments, definitely cannot imagine life without our cats. Our kitties can definitely teach me about getting more sleep, it is rare that I will sleep for 8 hours.

    Tom Mary Beth and the furries.

    • Ingrid
      July 2, 2013 at 5:18 pm (8 years ago)

      I think that’s true for most of us, Tom.

  14. Viki Worden
    July 2, 2013 at 10:33 am (8 years ago)

    I shared this on facebook because I love it! My cats do help with my stress. I love spending time with them all the time but even more when I am upset. They help me to sleep because they are so comforting.

    • Ingrid
      July 2, 2013 at 5:18 pm (8 years ago)

      Thanks for sharing, Viki!

  15. Vickster
    July 2, 2013 at 10:21 am (8 years ago)

    My cats have taught me to observe. I watch their bodies for any behavioral or physical changes; I watch their litter-box habits; I watch how they interact with each other. Small signs appear, if we just pay attention, that something may be off-kilter. Cats look out the windows, and they sit and quietly observe their humans all the time.

    • leila
      July 2, 2013 at 10:43 am (8 years ago)

      I absolutely agree with this! Spot on. It’s vital to watch their behavior, physical changes and litter box habits. Even just a slight change can mean something is off x

    • Ingrid
      July 2, 2013 at 5:17 pm (8 years ago)

      Excellent point, Vickster!

  16. Nadia
    July 2, 2013 at 9:00 am (8 years ago)

    Sleep! It doesn’t always work out, that I can sleep or nap when I’m tired but if I can fit a nap in, or go to bed at a decent hour, I do.

  17. Bobbi Hahn
    July 2, 2013 at 7:30 am (8 years ago)

    These are all valuable reminders from our feline teachers – now if only we would PAY ATTENTION!

    • Ingrid
      July 2, 2013 at 5:17 pm (8 years ago)

      Isn’t that the truth, Bobbi!

  18. Caren Gittleman
    July 2, 2013 at 7:09 am (8 years ago)

    Probably Number 1 and Number 4……..that being said, I need to implement a few more tips! Especially sleep. I do NOT get enough!

    • Ingrid
      July 2, 2013 at 5:17 pm (8 years ago)

      I think our cats are probably the only ones who ever get enough sleep, Caren.

  19. Kay
    July 2, 2013 at 3:09 am (8 years ago)

    I learnt from my cat all of these tips above…and the additional one…if someone sticks a cold thermometer up your butt…scream loudly and scratch them so hard they bleed…

    • Ingrid
      July 2, 2013 at 5:16 pm (8 years ago)

      LOL, Kay!


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