What Is A Cat Food Puzzle?

Puzzles for cat food are typically plastic containers in a variety of colors, shapes and sizes. They're designed to make a pet "work for their food," explained the Cummings Veterinary Medical Center at Tufts University. Food puzzles for cats offer an environmental enrichment activity, and can be created out of any material or object that can safely hold edible items.

Cats can be very choosy about which type of food puzzle they like (no surprise there), so if your fur baby doesn't take to one right away, try others until you find one that pleases your picky pal. The key is to choose one that enhances their senses and instincts.

Types of Cat Food Puzzles
Most commercially bought cat food puzzles are intended for dry cat food but you can try wet food in them, too. When choosing which cat food to use in your puzzle, consider what the cleanup process will entail.

There are puzzles that require cats to lift up clear plastic cups, open drawers with their paws, or fish kibble out of a maze. Others necessitate the use of their mouth to lift out food. Some cat food puzzles sit on a sturdy base, while others lay flat on the ground.

Food puzzles for cats don't have to cost a lot of money. There are many commercially available options but you can make your own cat food puzzle using common household items like:

Cardboard tubes
Empty plastic water bottles
Cardboard egg cartons
Plastic cups
Plastic ice cube trays
Mobile food puzzles are especially fun because your cat can roll them around the floor, adding an extra element of chase to the game. But make sure they can actually get the food out. The idea of these puzzles isn't to frustrate your cat but, rather, to engage them in a task for which they'll be rewarded.