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If you’ve followed me for several years, you may remember our Ask the Cat Behaviorist column with Mikel Delgado on The Conscious Cat. Mikel is a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist and Certified Cat Behavior Consultant who has been working with cats for over 20 years. She worked as a cat behavior specialist at the San Francisco SPCA for eight years before co-founding Feline Minds, where she offers assistance for cat owners, animal shelters, and corporations. Mikel completed her PhD in animal behavior and cognition at UC Berkeley, and was a postdoc at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine, where she researched the social and feeding behaviors of cats and the health and behavior of orphaned neonatal kittens.She co-authored the 2017 book Total Cat Mojo with Jackson Galaxy.

With Play With Your Cat: The Essential Guide to Interactive Play for a Happier, Healthier Feline, Mikel shares her wealth of experience about one of the most important, yet most overlooked aspects of caring for a cat: interactive play.

This comprehensive guide addresses all aspects of play, from why play is so important to why cats play to how to play with cats so that they can fully realize their “catness.” Mikel’s engaging, often playful voice and her impressive science background make this an informative as well as fun book.

There is so much gold in this book! The following quotes are just some of my favorites:

In the section about the temptation (of humans) to be too lazy to play with their cats, Mikel talks about how we often think we can multitask and dangle a wand toy for our cat while we watch TV. “One night, as I walked toward the toy closet, I saw my cat’s eyes light up with anticipation of playtime. And then I swear I saw the disappointment on her face as I marched myself back to the couch.” Guilty? I know I am.

Mikel repeatedly stressed that you get out of your relationship with your cat what you put in it. “You can just give them the basics, but will they thrive?”

In the section on how play can help with many behavior problems, Mikel stresses that “to modify our cats’ behavior, we must first modify ours.” She goes on to say that “…I truly believe that play for cats is a right, not a luxury, and we owners must be ready to adapt.”

This is one of the most important cat behavior books written in recent years. Every cat parent, no matter how experienced, will learn something new and come away with new ideas on how to make playtime more fun for both cat and human. After all, the point of play is not just to keep our cats happy, it’s also a wonderful way to deepen the bond between cat and human.

Even though I consider myself a seasoned cat expert, I came away with lots of insights and ideas to make playtime more interesting and fun for Allegra, and for myself.

Play With Your Cat is available from Amazon.


*Purrs of Wisdom is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to and affiliated sites. This means that if you decide to purchase through any of our links, we get a small commission. We only spread the word about products and services we’ve either used or would use ourselves. I received this book from the publisher. Receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review. All reviews on Purrs of Wisdom will always reflect my honest opinion, or, as the case may be, Allegra’s honest opinion.

5 Comments on Review: Play With Your Cat! by Mikel Delgado

  1. One if my cats was not into playing much, but he did like the laser light which he would chase around.
    And I would always end it where I had left his catnip..

  2. I’m adding this book to my reading list. As someone who has had feline companions for many years, I know there is always something new to be learned and I know this book will have lots of information to make my cats’ lives even more happy and enjoyable!

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