Tips and Tricks for Sharing Your Space with Your Cat:
Whether you’re downsizing to some new digs or picking up a new friend for the first time, we have some tips and tricks for making your space happy and habitable for felines and humans alike. The tricks here are one-part pet related, and a smaller part tiny living related. We drew our inspiration from asking some of our clients and the cat lover community at large how they cope with
these cramped quarters.
Exercise & Entertainment
Small spaces mean small movements! While the typical idea of a cat is one luxuriating in a good ole sun bath, don’t be fooled. Cats need exercise just like humans. In a small space they probably won’t be able to get very far so laser light shows may be out of the question. You can however buy a few teaser wands to pull out in order to get them to move. This is also good for you as an owner since you’ll be playing and spending time together.
If you have an outdoor cat, make sure they get regular access to the great wide world. Invest in a leash, or a cat stroller if you are comfortable with the idea. If this isn’t an option for you, try to leave curtains open so your pet can watch the great outdoors from the safety of your home.
If your friends with a kitten, realize the nocturnal activities are going to be an issue. Declutter your floor before bed, and make sure there is nothing precious that can be knocked from shelves including the typical victims of picture frames, books, glassware, and computer accessories. Opt for a fabric or cork board to hold up your photo collection, make sure any fragile objects are stowed safely behind cabinets, and invest in some lidded storage compartments to maximize the space you’re using.
Small spaces means you can get more personal with those you share space with. For cat owners this generally means stepping up your litterbox regime. Any smell is going to get noticed fast. It’s recommended to clean litter boxes twice daily. You also may be tempted to “hide” the litter box in such a small space. This is a mistake which often leads to higher rates of neglecting you duty, and will more quickly result in litter box problems.
Does your small space have a window? Open that baby up! Some fresh air can help circulate the room and break up lingering clouds of smell. It’s good to mix it up rather than recirculating the same stale smell through your air conditioning or heating unit.
As humans in need of some solitary time, we have the privilege of walking going for a walk, or visiting a café by ourselves. If your cat is an indoor cat they can’t manage the same luxury. In your small space, make sure you can give them the same sense of solitary we humans can enjoy. While the pickings may be a bit slim, make sure your feline friend has a space to claim their own. Somewhere that isn’t in a high traffic area, and makes them feel secure. Perhaps it a pillow on a shelf, a cat tent, or even a mountable cat tree on the wall. Either way, these should be places that they will never be contested to move from or give priority to someone else.
Taking a page out of the Tiny Homes community, invest in some collapsible accessories and tools. Not only will this save on space, but it may also help you keep to a food schedule your pets can benefit from. Food bowls and carriers in particular can be used when needed instead of taking up too much space.