cat toys

Review and Giveaway: Love in a Box from MeowBox

Meow_Box

Editor’s Note: As of August 2015,MeowBox.net has closed – please go to MeowBox.net for more information. If you are looking for a cat subscription box, go to meowbox.com.

I believe that there’s no such thing as a cat who is too spoiled, and thanks to MeowBox, now there’s a whole new way cat guardians can spoil their feline family members. Meow Box is a monthly subscription service. Each month, your kitty will receive a box filled with toys, treats, gadgets, accessories, and more.

I loved the blue and white box everything came in. I’ll be reusing it as a gift box. The girls were more excited about what was inside. Content varies from month to month. Our box  revealed a Kong Wubba toy, which is a big hit with Ruby, an Up Country catnip mouse, which came in a super cute cylinder package, a Kong Zoom Groom grooming tool, two bags of treats, and an adorable cat-shaped cookie cutter. I thought Continue Reading

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Happiness Is The Cat’s Meow

IMG_6472_edited

How many of you bought Christmas presents for your cats, only to have them turn up their little noses at them, or play with them once or twice, and then ignore them? I’ve done this more than I care to admit. I don’t even know why I even buy Allegra and Ruby toys. Our cat playroom (known in most homes as the family room) is already filled with more cat products than your average pet store! But there’s just something about Christmas that makes me want to get them something special, wrap it for them, unwrap it with them, and, each year, hope that this time, it’s going to be something they’re really going to like.

Well, it finally happened.Continue Reading

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5 Home Objects That Make Great Cat Toys

cat-play-toy

Play is essential for your cat’s well-being. It mimics their natural hunting instinct, and it keeps kitty occupied. And while pet stores (and our product guide!) are brimming with cute and innovative toys, cat toys don’t have to expensive, and you don’t even have to leave the house to find new ones. If you cat hasn’t already shown you that there are plenty of household items that make great, and perfectly safe toys, here are some suggestions for you:Continue Reading

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Interactive Puzzle Toys for Smart Cats

CatAmazing_Review

Puzzle toys are a great way to keep your cats entertained and mentally stimulated when you can’t play with them. The toys are designed to be filled with treats, and they challenge kitty to retrieve the treats through varied openings in the toys. Most puzzle toy manufacturers recommend using dry food with these puzzles. Since I don’t recommend feeding any dry food, not even as treats, I recommend using freeze dried meat based treats such as Pure Bites or Whole Life.

There’s a huge variety of puzzle toys on the market. The toy shown above is the CatAmazing Puzzle Toy, and it’s remained a big hit with Allegra and Ruby. In addition to using treats inside the toy, I put smaller toys inside, and that works just as well as treats in terms of holding their interest.Continue Reading

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Product review and giveaway: Cascades Boutique cat teepee

cat house playhouse for cats cardboard house for cats

Allegra and Ruby are always excited when there’s a new product to review, and since they had so much fun with this one, I thought it was only fair to let them write the review.

Allegra: When this odd looking box arrived at our house the other day, Ruby and I went to check it out immediately. We do that with all boxes that come into the house, but this one looked really different.

Ruby: I saw a picture of a triangle with a cat in the center on the box! That looked really interesting. There were also words on the box, but I can’t read, so I asked Allegra what they said.

cats and boxes cats and cardboard boxes

Allegra: It says “Native American Teepee for fluffy little critters.” We’re fluffy little critters, Ruby!

Ruby: So this is for us? Woohoo!!!

Allegra: Mom took her time unpacking it. We couldn’t wait to see what it was! When she finally got it out of the box, it didn’t look all that exciting. In fact, it just looked like more cardboard. Now don’t get me wrong, I like cardboard as much as the next cat, it can be very tasty, especially the edges, but this was a bit of a letdown after what it said on the box.

Ruby: Allegra, look! Mom is making something out of the cardboard!

Allegra: I can see that, Ruby. It looks like a tent. Let’s see if we can help her. See, with our help, this is going much faster.

Ruby: Look, it has a little opening in the front. We can go in it!

Allegra: You go first, Ruby.

Ruby: Okay! Oooh, Allegra, this is fun. You should come in, too!

Allegra: That’s okay, Ruby. I’ll just check it out from the outside first.

cats playing with cardboard cat house

Ruby: Coward!

Allegra: Who are you calling a coward? Get out of there and make room for me. I can go in, too!

cat inside cat playhouse

Ruby: Wee! We can both go in it at the same time! Or better yet, I can hide in here and pounce on you when you least expect me to. Watch out – here I come!!!

Since Allegra and Ruby clearly prefer playing with the Cascades Boutique cat teepee to writing about it, I thought I’d add a few things. The teepee is made from nice, sturdy cardboard, and even though it didn’t come with assembly instructions, it was very easy to put together (take it from someone who shudders when she sees the words “some assembly required” on anything!). It comes with a couple of cute different decorations for the front of the teepee to give it that “authentic Native American look.”

You can see the girls checking out their teepee in the video below. It’s become a permanent fixture in our kitty playroom. Ruby uses it more than Allegra, and, not surprisingly, she uses it mostly to stalk Allegra! It seems like the teepee would hold up well to even rough play.

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e0NU9xBO3F0

You can purchase the cat teepee from Cascades Boutique online. They also offer a Cat Chalet. Both the teepee and the chalet are made from 84% recycled cardboard.

As a special offer for Conscious Cat readers only, Cascades Boutique will offer a 25% discount on both products on all orders placed through September 30. Use rebate code CONSCIOUT during checkout. And one lucky reader will win either a cat teepee or chalet! To enter the giveaway, please leave a comment to let me know why you’d like to win, and whether you’d like to win the teepee or the chalet. For an additional chance to win, share this giveaway on Facebook or tweet about it, and leave the link in a separate comment. This giveaway ends Tuesday, August 23.

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Handmade Goodies for Cats

Guest post by Kate Benjamin

Over at Moderncat.net, we are huge fans of handmade goodies for cats. There are so many wonderful crafters on Etsy who make the cutest and smartest things! And it’s obvious that they all love their cats very much. Here are just a few of my most favorite Etsy finds.

Lovin’ Like Kittysville

http://www.etsy.com/shop/likekittysville

You can’t beat these beautiful retro-style kitty beds from Like Kittysville. Each bed is handcrafted with gorgeous designer and vintage fabrics. The boomerang shape fits kitty perfectly.

Tasty Treats from Jake & Micah

http://www.etsy.com/shop/JakeandMicah

These adorable catnip fortune cookies from Jake & Micah and are sure to please kitty! Each one comes with a cat-themed fortune.

Critters for Kitty from Oh Boy Cat Toy!

http://www.etsy.com/shop/OhBoyCatToy?section_id=6247801

Oh Boy Cat Toy makes some of the most awesome catnip stuffed critters! Watch kitty as she attacks the giant roach, or sneaks up on the felt snail. These are sure to be a favorite.

Drink Up With an Olive Meowtini from K Grant Designs

http://www.etsy.com/listing/40482894/olive-meowtini-cat-nip-toy

It’s martini time with this fabulous Meowtini set from K Grant Designs! The set comes with two jumbo olives stuffed with catnip and presented in a martini glass. Kitty might get a little tipsy!

Marvelous Melissa Makes Recycling Fun

http://www.etsy.com/listing/42954957/felted-wool-cat-nip-mice

These little critters may not be able to see, but they will sure give kitty a run for her money! Marvelous Melissa makes her Three Blind Mice from recycled felted wool sweaters. Each one is filled with a little catnip for an extra kick.

Kate Benjamin is the founder and editor of Moderncat, a resource for cat owners with a modern style. She seeks out the newest products for living with cats in a modern home. She tries to identify not only products that fit a modern aesthetic, but also items that are truly innovative and that make living with cats a more enjoyable experience. Moderncat combines product reviews with other useful information for cat owners in a clear and concise format.

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Safe Toys for Your Cat

What should I play with today?
There are hundreds of cat toys on the market, and as anyone owned by a cat knows, there is no way of telling for sure which toy will delight your cat, or which will generate a quick sniff, followed by a look of disdain and a turned tail.  So if you’re like most cat parents, you will continue to bring home toys in your quest to amuse and spoil your feline charges.

When shopping for cat toys, the most important thing  is the safety factor.  Cat toy safety really comes down to one thing:  if it can be swallowed, it’s dangerous.  

This means stay away from toys that have small parts that can come loose during an energetic play session.  Anything with glued on parts, metal pieces, tassles or strings should be a no-no.  Sometimes you can remove these parts (which is how Amber ended up with a lot of what we call “blind and deaf mice” – once the glued on eyes and ears are removed, these mice turn into perfectly safe toys).  But it’s always best to find a toy that doesn’t require removal of loose parts.

Toys with strings and rubber bands can be fun for your cat as long as you supervise play.  Never leave these toys with your cat unattended – rubber bands can loop themselves around your cat’s neck and choke her, strings can be chewed and ingested, and can present a life-threatening emergency if the piece of strings wraps itself around the cat’s intestines.  

So which toys are safe for your cat?

Amber loves anything that’s stuffed with catnip.  The fewer adornments, the better.  A great source for simple, and safe catnip toys is The Mouse Factory – they have a wide selection of fun toys, and their catnip is seriously potent.

The Kong line of cat toys offers a lot of fun and safe choices as well, you can find a sampling in the Conscious Cat Store and you’ll also find them in many pet stores.

Interactive cat toys are great fun for you and your cat – after all, what’s more fun than a rigorous play session with your kitties?  Some of these interactive toys, such as the feather teaser (a feather toy on the end of a string) require supervision because of the string part, but they can provide hours of fun for cat and human.

Of course, there are plenty of choices for toys that don’t require a trip to the pet store – paper bags, boxes, empty toilet paper rolls, or even just a wadded up piece of paper can be as much fun for your cat as expensive, store-bought toys.

Whatever safe toy you choose for your cat, have fun!

Amber’s current favorite is a fuzzy crab-like toy on the end of a long fuzzy string.  She allowed me to film her for a few seconds while she was playing with it:

httpv://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UuIeNptmc-w

What are some of your cats’ favorite toys?

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