How to Get a Cat to Use a Cat House?

Single Shed Cathouse

Understanding a Cat’s Need for Solitude

Cats, as charming and affectionate companions as they can be, also deeply value their alone time. This need for solitude can be traced back to their natural behavior as solitary hunters, which contrasts with the pack mentality seen in dogs. Cats prefer to hunt alone, reinforcing their independence and love for privacy.

Another aspect of a cat’s solitary nature is their territorial behavior. Cats ‘claim’ their territory by spraying, effectively marking an environment as their own, a space where they prefer to remain undisturbed. Recognizing this, investing in an indoor cat house can be a fantastic idea. It provides a secure and tranquil space for your cat to unwind in privacy, away from the hustle and bustle of the rest of the household.

But here’s the tricky part – how can you encourage a cat to use this specially prepared cat house? It’s essential to understand that the process requires patience and a respect for the cat’s autonomy, as they are likely to explore and accept this new space at their own pace.

Understanding What a Cat House Is

Before delving into how to encourage a cat to use a cat house, let’s clarify what a cat house actually is. In essence, a cat house is a specially designed refuge for cats, offering them a dedicated space where they can retreat whenever they wish. Some cat houses are designed for outdoor use, catering to the needs of outdoor cats by providing a cozy shelter within your garden.

However, it’s important to stress that an outdoor cat house isn’t intended as a substitute for your cat living inside the family home. Indoor cat houses, on the other hand, serve as a tranquil sanctuary within the bustle of the household. In other words, a cat house should be seen more as a home-within-a-home for your feline friend, rather than their primary living space. It’s a provision for privacy and comfort that respects a cat’s natural inclinations for solitude and territorial claim.

Exploring Cats’ Affinity for Indoor Cat Houses

One question that often arises is whether cats truly enjoy the use of indoor cat houses. The answer is a resounding yes! Cats inherently appreciate having a dedicated, private space where they can retreat to when they desire solitude.

However, if your cat is new to the concept of a cat house, don’t be surprised if they don’t immediately warm up to it. Like with any new introduction, it might take some time for them to get fully accustomed to this novel environment. Rest assured, there are practical steps you can take to help your cat feel more comfortable within their new refuge.

Once they’ve had a chance to explore and get settled, they’ll come to relish the comfort of their own private haven. A cat house can become their favorite spot to cozy up in, providing them a sense of safety and belonging within the larger context of your home.

Appreciating the Benefits of a Cat House

Cat houses, particularly indoor ones, offer numerous advantages to our feline companions. Let’s explore some of these benefits, and also how models like the Omlet Maya Indoor Cat House can add value to your home too.

First and foremost, a cat house serves as a safe sanctuary for your cat. It’s a place where they can retreat when they need quiet time, providing a comforting space that satisfies their natural inclination for solitude. A cat house respects their territorial nature, offering a dedicated space they can ‘claim’ as their own within your home.

The Omlet Maya Indoor Cat House, in particular, brings added benefits not just for your cat, but also for you. With its sleek design, it complements your home decor, subtly blending with your interior without compromising on functionality. Its easy-to-clean feature makes maintaining hygiene a breeze, contributing to your cat’s health and well-being.

What’s more, this model doubles as a storage facility, making it an efficient use of space in your home. This feature helps keep your pet’s toys, food, and other accessories organized and readily accessible. Overall, a cat house, especially a well-designed and multifunctional one, can be an ideal solution, offering a win-win scenario for both you and your pet.

Valuing Privacy

In lively, bustling households, a cat may not always relish being in the spotlight. Remember, cats are creatures that value their solitude. A cat house caters to this need by providing them with a private refuge, a space where they can retreat from the whirlwind of activity that often characterizes our homes.

Having access to their own shelter offers a sense of security and peace, allowing them to step back from the household commotion when needed. It respects their instinctual need for solitude, offering them a personal sanctuary within the larger, shared environment. The opportunity to retreat to a private space contributes significantly to a cat’s overall well-being and happiness.

Offering Safety

An additional advantage of a cat house is the security it provides to your feline friend. Cats, by nature, often seek enclosed spaces for their sense of safety. If you’ve observed your cat hiding in various places around your home, you’re witnessing a common feline behavior. They do this because confined spaces provide them with a feeling of protection.

Typically, this behavior is perfectly normal and not a cause for concern unless it becomes excessive. If you notice other signs such as avoidance of eye contact, frequent running away, or the tucking of their tail underneath them, these may be indications of anxiety. In such instances, consulting your vet is always recommended.

However, an indoor cat house can play a significant role in alleviating such anxiety. It offers a secure hideaway within your home, providing them with a personal ‘safe zone’. This dedicated sanctuary can help to instill a sense of calm and security, especially in cats that may be more anxious or nervous by nature.

Emphasizing Comfort and Cosiness

In addition to the aforementioned benefits, a cat house offers your feline companion a comfortable and cozy space to enjoy. This aspect becomes particularly significant during the colder months when cats seek warmth and a snug place to rest.

By placing your cat’s bed inside the indoor cat house, you provide them with a dedicated sleeping and relaxing spot within their shelter. This setup ensures that they have a comfortable and familiar space to retreat to whenever they desire extra warmth and coziness. The enclosed environment of a cat house helps retain their body heat, providing them with a cozy refuge even on chilly days.

Creating a comfortable and warm environment through an indoor cat house can significantly enhance your cat’s overall well-being and contentment, making it an essential addition to their living space.

Encouraging Your Cat to Use a Cat House

Getting your cat to use a cat house may require some patience and encouragement. Here are some helpful tips to create an enticing environment that encourages your cat to embrace their new shelter:

  1. Placement: Position the cat house in a quiet, calm area of your home, away from high-traffic zones or noisy appliances. Cats appreciate a sense of privacy and will be more inclined to explore the shelter in a tranquil setting.
  2. Familiarity: Introduce familiar scents by placing your cat’s bedding or a cloth with their scent inside the cat house. This will make the space feel more familiar and comforting to them.
  3. Enticements: Make the cat house enticing by incorporating their favorite toys, treats, or catnip inside. These familiar items will draw their interest and encourage them to explore and spend time in the shelter.
  4. Positive Association: Praise and reward your cat when they show interest in or use the cat house. Offer verbal praise, treats, or gentle strokes to create positive associations with the shelter.
  5. Gradual Introduction: Allow your cat to acclimate to the cat house at their own pace. Avoid forcing them inside or pressuring them. Cats are naturally curious, and given time, they will explore and enjoy the shelter on their terms.

Remember, every cat is unique, and the time it takes for them to accept and use the cat house may vary. Be patient and provide a welcoming and comfortable environment, and soon enough, your cat will come to appreciate and enjoy their own cozy space within the home.

Using Treats for Positive Reinforcement

Using cat treats as a form of positive reinforcement can be an effective strategy to encourage your cat to use their cat house. Here’s how you can incorporate treats to make the transition smoother:

  1. Placement: Start by placing some of your cat’s favorite treats in and around the cat house. This will pique their interest and create a positive association with the shelter.
  2. Gradual Progression: Initially, scatter a few treats near the entrance of the cat house to entice your cat to approach. As they become comfortable, gradually move the treats inside the shelter to encourage them to step further in.
  3. Reinforcement: Whenever your cat enters the cat house or spends time inside, offer verbal praise and additional treats as a reward. This positive reinforcement strengthens their association between the shelter and pleasant experiences.
  4. Decrease Reliance on Treats: As your cat becomes accustomed to using the cat house, gradually reduce the frequency of treat placement. Eventually, they should willingly enter the shelter without the need for treats, as they have associated it with comfort and positive experiences.

By using treats as a positive reinforcement tool, you can help your cat form a positive and enjoyable connection with their cat house. Over time, they will come to appreciate and willingly retreat to their shelter without the need for additional incentives.

Enticing with Catnip

Catnip can be a fantastic tool to entice your cat to explore and use their cat house. The chemical compound nepetalactone, found in catnip leaves, triggers a unique response in many cats, making it a popular and stimulating herb for feline companions.

Here’s how you can incorporate catnip to encourage your cat to enter their shelter:

  1. Catnip Placement: Sprinkle catnip inside and around the cat house. You can use dried or flaked catnip or opt for catnip treats specifically designed to attract cats. The potent scent of catnip is irresistible to many cats, making it an effective lure.
  2. Observation and Enjoyment: Observe your cat’s reaction to the catnip. They may roll, rub against it, or become more playful. This heightened state of excitement can lead them to explore the cat house to further enjoy the effects of catnip.
  3. Positive Reinforcement: As your cat engages with the catnip and shows interest in the cat house, provide verbal praise, pets, or treats to reinforce their positive association with the shelter.
  4. Catnip Alternatives: While most cats are affected by catnip, it’s important to note that not all cats react to it. If your cat is unresponsive to catnip, try other enticing scents or toys that appeal to their individual preferences.

Using catnip strategically can be a fun and effective way to encourage your cat’s interaction with their cat house. The allure of catnip can capture their attention and make the shelter an even more enticing and enjoyable space for them.

Utilizing Toys for Encouragement

Incorporating toys into the process of acclimating your cat to their cat house can be highly beneficial. Whether your cat is a fan of catnip or has other preferred toys, using them strategically can help create positive associations with the shelter. Here’s how you can incorporate toys to encourage your cat to explore their cat house:

  1. Catnip Toys: If your cat enjoys catnip, consider using cat toys that contain catnip as an additional incentive to explore the cat house. These toys can be placed near or inside the shelter, enticing your cat to engage with them and discover the comfort of their new space.
  2. Favorite Toys: If catnip doesn’t elicit a response from your cat, use their favorite toys instead. Initiate play sessions with these toys near the cat house to create positive associations. Gradually move the play sessions closer to the shelter, encouraging your cat to venture inside as they become more comfortable.
  3. Chase Toys: Chase toys, such as wand toys or interactive toys that encourage your cat to chase and pounce, can be particularly effective in enticing them into the cat house. The natural instinct to chase and hunt can motivate your cat to enter their shelter while engaging in play.
  4. Toy Storage: Once your cat has settled into their cat house, it can serve as a convenient storage solution for their toys. This keeps the toys organized and easily accessible, maintaining a tidy environment while also providing an additional purpose for the shelter.

By incorporating toys into the process, you create a positive and interactive experience for your cat. Playing with their favorite toys near the cat house encourages them to explore and discover the benefits of their own private space.

Enhancing Comfort with a Bed

Providing a comfortable bed inside the cat house is an excellent strategy to entice your cat to utilize their shelter. Here’s why it can be effective and a recommendation for a cozy cat bed:

  1. Optimal Comfort: Placing a soft and plush bed on the floor of the cat house offers your cat an inviting space to relax and unwind. Cats appreciate a cozy spot that supports their natural inclination for comfort and relaxation.
  2. Encouraging Usage: A comfortable bed inside the cat house creates an appealing environment that encourages your cat to spend time in their den. The allure of a cozy bed will make the shelter even more enticing, increasing the likelihood of your cat willingly entering and using their house.
  3. Maya Donut Cat Bed: The Maya Donut Cat Bed, with its deep cushioning and luxurious design, provides the perfect level of comfort for your feline friend. The plush material and supportive structure will have your cat sinking into a bed that matches their dreams.

By incorporating a comfortable bed into the cat house, you enhance the overall appeal and comfort of the shelter. This creates an inviting space that your cat will be drawn to, making their new den a cozy haven they’ll be eager to relax in.

Enhancing Warmth with Cozy Blankets

As winter approaches, providing a warm and soft blanket inside your cat’s den is a thoughtful gesture that will be appreciated by your pet. Here’s why incorporating blankets can be enticing and comforting for your cat:

  1. Winter Comfort: Placing a blanket inside the cat house helps create a cozy and snug environment, especially during colder months. The added layer of insulation helps retain heat, providing your cat with extra warmth and comfort.
  2. Luxury Feel: Positioning a soft cat blanket on top of your cat’s bed inside the shelter adds a touch of luxury. This plush layer enhances the overall coziness of the shelter, making it even more inviting for your cat.
  3. Irresistible Appeal: Cats are naturally drawn to warm and comfortable spots. By including a warm blanket, you create an enticing environment that your cat will find irresistible. The soft texture and warmth will make the shelter an appealing and cozy retreat.

Consider choosing blankets specifically designed for cats, ensuring they are safe and easy to clean. The addition of a warm blanket elevates the comfort level of the cat house, making it a desirable and comforting space for your feline companion.

Remember to regularly check the blanket for cleanliness and ensure it remains dry. By providing a warm and cozy blanket, you enhance the overall appeal of the cat house and create a haven of comfort for your beloved cat.



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98% of orders of our ‘in-stock’ products are delivered within 3-5 working days of your order being placed with us. If your product does not arrive within this time period, we will send you some complimentary toys for you feline friend to play with!