Pet Keen is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

Home > Cats > Why Your Cat Isn’t Interested in Playing With You: 6 Reasons

Why Your Cat Isn’t Interested in Playing With You: 6 Reasons

red cat sleeping in basket near winter window

Cats have remarkable hunting instincts that may be provoked by many variables. This behavior makes them a perfect pet for playtime, as they can’t resist toys or smells that trigger their predator prowess. But sometimes, they just seem to want nothing to do with playing.

There is a myriad of causes for this, which is why we’ve created a list to show you what may be the culprit. Here are six reasons why your cat isn’t interested in playing with you!

divider-cat

The 6 Reasons Why Your Cat Doesn’t Play With You

1. There Could Be a Medical Problem

If your cat is usually playful, but all of a sudden wants nothing to do with its favorite activities, there could be a big medical mishap. Your feline may have a disease that causes them to be sluggish or lethargic; it could be its weight, a bad stomach, or even just body pains. Many of these should be looked at, and it’s best practice to bring your cat to the vet if its behavior seems out of the ordinary. However, keep reading our next reasons before you take a drive.

vet holding the scottish fold cat in a veterinary clinic
Photo Credit: Alice Rodnova, Shutterstock

2. Wrong Type of Toys

No cat is the same, and with that comes different preferences during playtime. Many cats prefer something interactive with their owners, while others only consider something they can do on their own. The simplest solution is to find out what they like; try a handful of toys to see which they favor. That may be a laser, a mouse on a string, or a physical playground. Once you find what they like, it’ll be much easier to find other items that they may enjoy!

Our Pick for Best Catnip Toy:

Well-designed toys will keep your cat happy and engaged. For a sturdy, fun toy that will look nice in your living room, we recommend Hepper’s Catnip Stick Toy! These toys are designed to look like prey and double-bagged to stand up to your cat’s sharpest claws and teeth. Plus, they’re filled with organic catnip and handmade in the USA.

Hepper Stick Catnip Cat Kicker Toy
  • No Filler - Like all the best cat toys our is stuffed with 100% organic catnip. Cheap cat toys with...
  • Flexible Play - Simple plush shape is great for biting, scratching and pawing. It can start life as...
  • Durably Designed - Our cat safe toys are hand-stitched with a double-lined exterior construction for...

At Pet Keen, we’ve admired Hepper for many years, and decided to take a controlling ownership interest so that we could benefit from the outstanding designs of this cool cat company!


3. They Have No Play Routine

In the case that your feline isn’t up for a game of cat-and-mouse, see if they change their mind during different times of the day. After all, you might just have a nocturnal cat. This can make it difficult to plan around, but if you keep a consistent schedule of when they are active, you can cater to their needs and make a plan every day during that time. If there is a clear pattern to their routine, they will be far more easygoing.


4. Their Environment Is Uncomfortable

One of the main reasons your companion doesn’t want to play is because they don’t feel safe at home. If it’s too cold or hot, or there is an unsettling aroma, they may opt to stay in an area that makes them feel at ease. But they also need an open space with places to scratch, climb, and hide. If they aren’t provided with these, their hunting instincts won’t be able to shine. Try to dedicate an area of your home to associate it with their natural behaviors.


5. Patience Is Key

Although your cat may seem uninterested in the toys you offer, it could just be their instincts. Cats naturally don’t strike prey instantly; they take time before taking action. This means that it’s important to be patient and wait for them to become fixated on their ‘prey’ before giving up hope. Some people will try to wave a stick in front of their face, but that’s not exactly the best way to go and it may make them irritated. Instead, be calm and try to do things from a distance so they have to come to you.


6. They’re Tired from a Long Day

Last of all, your furry friend is likely just tired and out of gas. It might just be that they have already climbed around and scratched their cat tree—at this point, they will want to rest for their next day of mischief! It’s important to realize these moments so that you can steer clear of any toy antics so they don’t feel overwhelmed. Find out which time of day they have the most energy; it’ll work wonders!

cat sleeping on a pillow
Photo Credit: Darkmoon_Art, Pixabay

divider-cat Conclusion

If your cat is uninterested in playing whatsoever, there is surely a problem. They are meant to unleash their predator instincts so they feel successful and safe. Try our tips to see if they react differently; it could be a major medical issue or something as simple as preference. In the end, we hope these six reasons gave you a better understanding of why your cat might not be interested in playing with you!


Featured Photo Credit: vubaz, Shutterstock

Our vets

Want to talk to a vet online?

Whether you have concerns about your dog, cat, or other pet, trained vets have the answers!

Our vets