Is it safe to give a cat life mouse to play with?

Our question this week was:

Dr. Debra – my cat likes to play. Is it safe to give my cat a live mouse to play with periodically (and even eat if he wants). My cats name is Sammy and I think he might enjoy this maybe once a week or so. He is a 2-year-old indoor cat and I think he might enjoy the real cat and mouse game! I can buy mice pretty cheap at the local pet store.

Bill.

Answer

Hi – Bill. Thanks for your email. You asked if it is "safe" to give your cat a live mouse to play with and possibly eat on occasion.

Well….I'm really torn to answer this question Bill. It may be safe but I'm not sure it is humane to give a cat a mouse to play with, torture, kill and eat. I realize that cats do this in nature all the time but somehow it seems different in the natural habitat.

I'd prefer you play with your cat with toys. If you want some suggestions on how to figure out what toys your cat may like best – read this article – Cat Toys – Selecting the Right Toys for Your Cats Play Preference.

Dr. Debra

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