Are cat beds a real requisite?
Pets, especially indoor cats, fall in the category of one of the laziest pet animals. Kittens are ‘comfort –lovers’ and they spend two third of their lives curling up at a warm, cozy place. Like humans, cats love to choose the most comfortable room and ‘space’ to sleep. Their places of interest can be your favorite cushion, couch, furniture or your bed which may not be your choice. If you want to put a stop to cat hair being deposited on your bed and your furniture being clawed, cat bed is your finest option. Moreover, cats sleeping on cold hard floor tend to develop joint problems as they age. Cat beds provide your cat a warm place to sleep and a sense of security which they seek at the first place.
Choose the right bed for your kitty
Plenty of cat beds with different style and structure are available in all pet stores and supermarkets .Cat bed varieties come in several design, shape and size that you sometimes may get confused as of which one would best suit your kitty.
Some enviable factors to be considered here are:
- Size of your kitty -The cat bed should not be too large or too small for your kitty .Too small ones will make them uncomfortable and too large ones will make them insecure. Measure the size of your kitty and leave a few inches of space around the cat to give it enough room to turn around and stretch out.
- Material of the bed- Cotton, faux fur and polar fleece are the common materials which make good cat beds. Wool and other synthetics also form basic cat bed fabrics to offer comfort in their own unique style. You can choose any one of this kind considering the style, color and size that suits your kitty as well as your home decor and floor color.
- Comfort level - Most cats prefer cat beds that come without a cover. Old bed clothes or cat quilts (comforter) can serve the purpose if you buy uncovered cat beds. They feel uncomfortable in some kind of fabrics, so choose one with a texture your cats love to sleep on. Select ones that are washable as unclean ones attract fleas.
- Shape and structure- Cats tend to prefer their own place to curl up and sleep. That may hide behind the door or inside the closet, or under your bed. You can choose a cat bed with a similar shape so that they feel comfortable sleeping in it. The most common is a round woolen cat bed, as it provides a warm cushion and a round closed shape to curl up and sleep.
- Location- Cats do not tend to sleep in the same place; they may choose any quiet, cozy and hidden place to recline. Find out her favorite place and get a cat bed that suits the space in shape and size and place it at the exact location. Once your cat gets used to sleeping on the bed, you can move the bed to a more fitting location of your choice.
- Ease of cleaning- Cats tend to shed hairs wherever they sleep and it attracts fleas, so a regular wash of the cat bed is a good practice. Choose one that fits in your washing machine and dryer.
- Cost, durability and guarantee – You may not want to run for a new cat bed every month. So check for the durability and guarantee of the cat bed before it becomes your pet’s favorite.
Kitty Bed Types
A bamboo woven basket or a cardboard box forms the most economical type of cat beds. Cut down one side of the box and place a cushion and an old bed cloth inside it to make it soft and warm. The downside is that these can get spoiled very easily as cats tend to scratch and chew them. Advantage is that getting a new once doesn’t involve much money or pain.
Pet shops provide plenty of cat bed varieties in almost all imaginable shape and style. Keep in mind the factors to be considered to get the most suitable cat bed for your kitty and your home.
Mat Style Bed
This is one of the most common and cost-effective bed type .Mats are usually made of plastic in rectangular or circular shape that can be placed anywhere your kitten chooses to get a nap. These are durable and machine washable.
Padded Cat bed
Padded cat beds are made of fabrics which are usually used to make flat chair cushions. It comes in oval and round shape with high walls. A soft cushion is placed inside which can be removed and cleaned.
Cuddle Up Bed/ Cat Igloo bed
The cup style bed is designed in circular shape with an opening at the top to resemble a nest. The heavy weight fabric material holds the bed in place and the design allows your kitty to curl up inside it. Modified ones look more like a den with a roof and an opening at one side. This design is most preferred by the cats as cuddle cup shape gives them a sense of security. Igloo beds for cat forms a kind of cuddle up bed. Cat igloos give the secure feeling of a small cave.
Bean Bag Cat beds
Similar to bean bags, this type of cat bed is made of nylon and it consists of removable water/odor resistant machine washable cover .It comes in various colors and it easily fits anywhere in or outside your house.
Thermal/Heated cat beds
Thermal beds have internal heating units that provide intermittent warming to maintain an even temperature which can be pre-set. Thermal beds are of two different types, one that works with electric power and the other one reflect the heat dissipated from the cat’s body. Heated beds are most preferred by cat owners who live in colder areas. This type of bed suits short haired or senior cats and cats having joint pains. Separate thermal units can be fixed to all other cat bed types. Thermal beds should be checked for safety as it uses electric power to heat up.
Window- sill Perches/ Cat perches
A window-sill cat bed can be fixed to the window sill where your cat can climb up and enjoy a catnap in the sun. Window sill perches looks similar to a ledge with a cushion or carpet on top of it. This fits in almost all size windows and it doesn’t leave any marks on the wall where it is fixed. If it is placed at two or more windows, your cat can enjoy different sight-seeing and bird watching.
Luxury Cat bed/Furniture Styled bed
A cat bed with the look and feel of a beautiful furniture piece adds beauty to your home. Luxury cat beds are available in the shape of cushioned sofa, sleeping lounge, rocking chair and bunk bed. Choose one that goes with your interior décor. It is appealing to both humans and cats. Luxury cat beds may be more expensive compared to the other types. Furniture styled bed if provided with wooden slits or grids tend to trap your cat’s head or paws.
Cat trees/Cat Condos
Cat trees or cat condos form a structure mostly made of wood and wrapped with carpet and it is a combo of scratching posts, cat toys, ramps, and platforms facing different directions with sleeping areas on it. The sleeping areas are designed in a way that your cat can crawl inside and sleep. A wooden multi level cat tree/condo will save your couch from being covered with cat hair and your furniture from being clawed. Condos form an ideal option for households with multiple cats.
- Read more about scratching posts
Making your kitty love their bed
Cats don’t bother to sleep on the cat bed that seems attractive or luxurious to humans. Just like experimenting with cat litters and cat leashes, your cat needs to be trained to get on to the cat bed and find comfort in it.
Here are some tips to make them use cat beds.
- Try placing the cat bed in each and every location they choose to sleep.
- Providing with a blanket or bed cloth or a quilt on it will persuade your cat to try it out.
- Cat nip toys can be used to encourage them to get on to the cat bed and stay on it.
- Cats prefer high places like on the shelf top or tall furniture to snooze. Moreover, they love to sleep in the sun. Cat perches serve both the purpose.
Cat beds have to be cleaned and dried properly to remain fresh and odorless. It should not be placed near fire place as the fabrics used to make cat beds are flammable. Cat bed has to be checked frequently for rips as cats tend to scratch and claw them. Keep it far from a litter box, as cats may walk straight from the litter box to the bed carrying the litter and dust particles on its fur and paws.