First time you use the Snuffle mat
Put 3-5 really tasty treats on the top of the Snuffle mat loosely on n the fleece. Stay with your cat whilst they learn how to sniff out the treats. If the cat starts to lift or pull at the mat, then you should gently move the mat away a little bit. Then encourage them to continue sniffing by pointing out the treats on the mat to them. This sniffing behaviour will help your cat enjoy continuing to sniff for treats rather than picking the mat up, shaking or digging in it.
Once the cat has found the treats put the Snuffle mat away. Repeat this exercise twice a day for the first few days. This will associate the sniffing activity with the reward of finding treats.
After this you can make the activity more rewarding by hiding the treats deeper into the mat. You can then mix the really tasty treats with normal kibble and progress to hiding just kibble with the odd tasty treat in the future.
After about 3-4 sessions most cats will have learnt to calmly sniff the whole May searching for their reward.
The snuffle mat can also be used as a great distraction for your cat, for example whilst grooming your cat may be more likely to sit still and allow a brush to be used.
Slowing down fast eaters
Mealtimes for cats are boring. They often get fed once/twice a day from a bowl, where they can just gulp down one of their favourite things, food. Or they may just ignore it and hardly eat at all, because it is just plain boring. A Snuffle mat can change all this. Once you have taught your cat to sniff for treats you can start adding more kibble (Dry food) and transition it to replace their bowl at mealtimes. Split your cat’s meal into individual sessions to extend the activity further.
Did you know, 15 minutes of sniffing used as many calories as an hour walk! Therefore. A Snuffle mat makes a great activity for kittens and young cat’s that have lots of energy and mischief.
Also sniffing will also act as a calmer and directs excess energy into a different activity.
Washing your Snuffle mat
The Snuffle mat is machine washable at 30 degrees. We recommend that you put in a couple of small hand towels to balance the load and use only a gentle spin to get rid of excess water. Air dry your Snuffle mat as the use of a tumble dryer is not recommended.
As with all our pet products we recommend that you always supervise your pets and remove the item it becomes damaged.
Snuffle mats are available from Kitty Comforts if you would like more details please message us.