I play, therefore I am a cat.
I play when I am relaxed and feeling safe. I DON'T play if I am feeling stressed, or angry, or frightened or just hungry. So play is a way humans can recognise feline happiness.
It's also the way humans can recognise an unhappy cat. A cat that cannot or will not play is not relaxed and may be anxious or stressed.
Play is almost as good as hunting. Yes, I know that we house cats don't need to hunt for food any more. But the hunting instinct is designed to make us feel intensely absorbed and fully alive.
We indoor cats don't have the chance to hunt, but play is the next best thing to hunting. It exercises our body, interests our mind and fulfills the hunting instinct. It's not the social play with another cat: it's playing with a cat toy or some little object.
This is a book which will help your human give you the best chance for happy relaxed play. It's written by one of the best cat researchers in the world.
Get your human to read it.
- The author also has a terrific blog at https://whatyourcatwants.com/