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Last updated: 30 Nov 2020

The Best Cat Exercise Wheel (Review) in 2020

Key features

Comes with rubber mallet to facilitate easy installation

Exercise wheel allows your indoor cat to expel their pent-up energy safely

Four included wheels work to stabilize the cat exercise wheel

Key features

Artistic cut-out design will look striking in any living space

Cats of all shapes and sizes will be able to fit in Mishap's spacious wheel treadmill

Made from high-quality materials that resist scratching

Key features

Cat walking wheel boasting numerous features sells for just under $150

Innovative waterwheel treadmill is easy to install due to detailed instruction manual

Waterwheel can be used to exercise or as a quiet place for your cat to curl up in

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Olivia Williams
Published 15:24 pm

Research undoubtedly points towards the fact that all cats should be indoor cats. Given that animals rights organisations such as PETA have warned against the dangers of the concrete jungle for our beloved felines, we’re inclined to trust the experts. Now, it’s time for cat lovers to figure out how to make our indoor environments mentally stimulating for our cats.

Thankfully, you won’t have to come up with inventive solutions so your cat doesn’t become bored all on your own. Cat exercise wheels are loved by cats everywhere and provide them with the physical and mental exercise they crave. What’s more, so you don’t become disorientated by the heaps of exercise wheels on offer, we’ve compiled the safest toys on the market. Browse below and you’ll surely find the ideal exercise wheel to suit your little furball.

The Best Cat Exercise Wheel

1

Say hello to One Fast Cat’s gorgeous exercise wheel – boasting a jet-black, sleek design that appears to be more like a glorified piece of home decor. Although users will have to tolerate setting up this exercise wheel, once they’ve succeeded, your cat will be able to fulfil their exercising needs as you occupy yourself with other day-to-day tasks.

As One Fast Cat’s run surface is made from closed cell EVA foam, owners are reassured to know that their cat’s claws won’t catch, hurting them in the process. Besides, the EVA foam also allows cats to run around naturally as they would in the great outdoors. We promise to stop going on and on about the run surface after confirming that it’s made from recycled plastics. It’s therefore clear that buying One Fast Cat’s exercise wheel is the right decision for your cat and for protecting our environment.

Exercise wheel is made entirely from recycled plastics

Close cell EVA foam constituting the run surface prevents a cat’s claws from catching

Open design allows cats to enter from either side

Specification:
  • Brand: One Fast Cat
  • Weight: 24 pounds

2

We urge you to ignore GoPet’s product name that states it’s a treadwheel suitable for small dogs. It’s true – small dogs like Jack Russells will simply adore this exercise wheel. However, our feline friends will enjoy this wheel just as much! This lightweight product comes pre-assembled and boasts a quiet design that allows cat owners to sleep peacefully while their furry housemates play away to their heart’s content.

The cushioned matted surface protects cats’ paws as they tread on their workout wheel. Plus, if you have the space for your cat to safely play outside in the yard, then they can bring their Treatwheel with them – after all, this motion wheel is UV-resistant. Available in black, blue, red, and green, GoPet’s product is the key towards your cat’s wellbeing.

Included running surface mat is comfortable on a cat’s paws

Product can be used outdoors thanks to UV resistant design

Item comes pre-assembled to avoid a time-consuming set-up

Specification:
  • Brand: GOPET
  • Model: CG4012
  • Weight: 42 pounds

3

Can’t make up your mind whether you’d rather buy a scratching tower, a new cat bed, or a running wheel for your precious pet? With Creation Core’s product, owners now won’t have to choose. This innovative design, constructed to resemble a waterwheel, is invented to keep mischievous cats from destroying your furniture. Instead, they’ll most likely play with the cat scratcher board positioned on the top of the waterwheel. When they become tired of this, they’ll surely jump down to operate the waterwheel, providing them with some much-needed exercise.

The smaller design is the perfect size for lighter felines in smaller living spaces, whereas the larger model is able to serve multiple cats at once. And just in case customers don’t know whether the company care about their pets, the organic catnip that Creation Core throw in alongside their multi-level product will be sure to go down a treat!

Organic catnip included for free alongside wheel

Waterwheel treadmill made from non-toxic material

Cat scratcher board provides surface for pets to claw to satisfy their natural instincts

Specification:
  • Brand: Creation Core

4

Made of durable PVC, Generic’s Pet Cat Running Wheel is the way to a cat’s heart. The PVC plastic will ensure your cat’s delicate pads are protected so they can run to their heart’s content. Boasting a length of120 cetimeters and a width of 35, multiple cats at once can run side by side on this cat wheel together.

Generic’s model will blend in discretely with any home decor, given its dark and bold aesthetic. But if you want your kitty to stay active but safe outside in the garden, this wheel can be used outdoors without becoming damaged by the element. Plus, cleaning this running wheel after it undergoes substantial wear and tear is simple: just directly wash the runway with water so this product continues to bring happiness to both owner and cat alike.

PVC plastic guarantees durability

Elegant appearance allows cat climbing frame to discretely fit into the background of any living space

Weather-resistant cat treadmill wheel can be used outdoors

Specification:
  • Brand: Generic
  • Weight: 12kg

5

Our first impression of Mishap’s adorable cat treadmill is that if it operates as good as it looks, cats everywhere won’t be able to get enough of this innovative purchase. Boasting natural, reinforcing pillars to hold it upright, Mishap’s provides your cat with a perfect space to have fun running around their treadmill to their heart’s content.

This wheel roller for cats is made of jute, beating out the most common material for scratching posts, carpet, by virtue of its sturdiness, durability, and long-lasting nature. Plus, this type of natural fiber feels soft against a cat’s paws – running on their treadmill will feel as soft as running on air. Paired with the frame made of luxury solid wood, pine, and natural sisal, Mishap’s treadmill constitutes a premium buy for cats who deserve the world.

Cat climbing frame made with natural, reinforcing pillars to allow cats to enjoy a comfortable space

Water-resistant product features jute so cats’ paws stay protected when running

Stable base eases owners’ anxiety that their cat may hurt themselves

Specification:
  • Brand: Mishap

Best Cat Exercise Wheel Buying Guide & FAQ

Now that you’ve browsed our five fantastic products, it’s hard to know what wheel your cat would prefer. After all, are these wheels even safe for cats to enjoy, and are they really worth the money?

These niggling doubts are why we’ve put together a comprehensive buying guide and FAQ containing everything you’ll ever need to know about buying and owning a cat exercise wheel.

Factors to Consider When Choosing a Cat Running Wheel

Have you set your heart on owning a cat exercise wheel but are completely daunted by the prospect of choosing the correct kind for your kitten? We’re here to help. We’ve compiled a list of questions to keep yourself on the right track when researching the ideal running wheel.

How quiet is the running wheel?: Owners who cannot cope without their beauty sleep won’t fare well with owning a noisy cat running wheel. Personally, we can’t think of much worse than lying in bed eager to rest so you can tackle what’s bound to shape up to be a busy day, only to hear the hollow, rumbling sound of your cat’s running wheel start up. Many cat wheels have been effectively designed to minimize noise levels, so do your research by scrutinizing customer comments before you make your final decision.

How big is the running wheel?: You may be so excited by the prospect of a running wheel that you completely forget that these wheels are cumbersome in any small living space due to their size. On average, a running wheel takes up the amount of space of a 42-50 inch TV. That’s why it’s recommended to measure the amount of space you have available before purchasing such a large item.

Does my running wheel include any other toys: You’d be right when saying that a cat exercise wheel is an investment – these desirable products certainly don’t come cheap. However, the price tends to seem justifiable with cat running wheels that include other ways for your cat to amuse themselves. One prime example is Creation Core’s Waterwheel that features jute wood in order for cats to satisfy their instinctual urge to scratch, a comfortable spot to rest and feel safe, and a running wheel all in one. For cat lovers who live in smaller apartments, you won’t feel as though you’re tight on space.

Young Abyssinian cat in action

Benefits of Exercise Wheels for Cats

Your cat will become motivated to exercise: Given that 44% of cats across America were found to be obese in 2019, managing the feline obesity epidemic should be cat lovers’ top priority. Cat exercise wheels won’t only ensure formally obese pets enjoy a higher quality of life, you’ll notice that your cat is more engaged and mentally stimulated, too.

However, is it mere speculation that a cat would exercise if presented with a running wheel? Actually, there exists definitive proof that cats wouldn’t leave their running wheels to gather dust. A study conducting research into whether having access to a running wheel increased voluntary physical activity in domesticated cats of both sexes at the University of Illinois determined that female cats’ voluntary physical activity resoundingly increased, with the voluntary physical activity of male cats increasing in the dark cycle.

How to Train Your Cat to Use the Wheel

Although the University of Illinois’s study discussed above alluded to cats using their running wheel by choice, your cat can be trained to start using their running wheel immediately. First of all, hunt around your home for your cat’s favorite toy. Moving the cat toy around in front of your cat will get them engaged to the extent that your feline will be so fixated on retrieving their toy that they won’t even notice they’ve just jumped up onto their new exercise wheel. Now that they’re happily perched on their new exercise wheel, give them a treat to show them that this good behavior will be rewarded.

Only now that your cat has familiarized themselves with the feel and smell of their new running track can teaching them how to use the wheel commence. First and foremost, tactically hold up cat treats to encourage your cat to jump on and off their new wheel, rewarding them with these treats once they step onto the wheel’s surface. After you notice your cat’s doubts beginning to subside towards their new toy, hold a treat up the wheel to push your cat to take a couple of steps on their wheel. Although progress will most likely be slow and steady at first, keep on trying – we promise this training will pay off eventually! As you notice your cat beginning to improve, challenge them by increasing the number of steps required to receive a reward.

If your cat is strictly following a no-treat diet, this training can also be carried out with the help of a laser pointer. Laser pointers provide them with the encouragement to move about, as their natural predatorily instincts kick in as soon as the laser point light provides them with something to chase. Remember that your cat’s laser pointer should never be pointed towards their eyes, as this may wreak havoc on your furry friend’s delicate retinas.

The pace to which cats acclimatize themselves to a cat wheel is extremely different: some cats will take to their exercise wheel like a fish takes to water whereas some felines will require numerous training sessions to even get them onto the wheel’s surface, never mind running on it. Just be patient with your furball and training will be a positive experience for both parties.

Best Cat Exercise Wheel FAQ:

Q: Are cat wheels safe?

A: Although a cat wheel may appear to be intimidating to owners who don’t know much about them, just think about the crazy stuff cats will attempt of their own accord – whether that’s taking a leap of faith from a high storey building or climbing to the top of the Christmas tree. Cat wheels for exercise that boast running wheels operating inside the groove protect our furry felines’ paws and tails. Plus, the width of reputable cat wheels mean that cats won’t go flying off the wheel, hurting themselves in the process. As long as you’ve done your research and chosen a wheel from a reputable company, your cat wheel will be safe for use, having been subjected to various quality checks throughout the design process.

Q: How often should I exercise my kitty on the wheel?

A: We recommend exercising your cat for fifteen minutes in total on their kitty wheel. Be mindful that top cat behavior experts recommend that a cat’s total playtime should be close to an hour, so split your playtime sessions with your cat up into chunks throughout the day in order to support their mental wellbeing.

It’s also important to note that although your cat may love running on their exercise wheel, the forty-five remaining minutes of playtime should be devoted to other games. Although time on the cat wheel can be an interactive affair, your cat will ultimately become bored of running if they aren’t engaged in other games such as cat and mouse or hide and seek.

Animals at home - red cute little cat pet kitty on floor

Our Top Pick

All five of the cat exercise wheels in this buying guide are capable of meeting your cat’s exercise requirements. However, if we had to consider all the fundamental aspects that constitute an exercise wheel – that is, durability, aesthetics, and safety – One Fast Cat’s Exercise Wheel beats out all other contestants. Boasting a sleek run surface made of recycled closed cell EVA foam, a cat’s claws and paws will be protected. The set-up is simple if you follow the detailed YouTube video One Fast Cat put together, and becomes even simpler if you make use of the rubber mallet that the company provide customers with. Once you’ve succeeded in setting up the wheel, your cat can enjoy running around it to burn up their pent-up energy from indoors. Want to know our advice? Although One Fast Cat’s wheel is often unavailable simply by virtue of its demand on the global marketplace, waiting a while to buy one of these cat wheels will be worth it.

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