If you have a cat-obsessed child in the house like I do, you’ll know how passionate these kids can get about their furry feline friends.
I’ve spent many years sifting through the best and worst of cat toys, games, and crafts for kids. I have a headstart when it comes to choosing the best cat toys for kids. To save you the time and effort of sifting through the endless options, I’ll share my carefully collected knowledge.
- It responds to touch
- Extremely lifelike
- Cat has brushable fur
- Helps teach coding
- Works as a playset
- Comes with an enjoyable book
- Has art activity & cat figures
- Can be used with washable marker
- Provides endless coloring opportunities
- Easy to learn
- There are minimal rules
- Game is educational
- 12-in-1 mini puzzles
- Has fun, humorous images
- Intermediate difficulty level
- 20 pre-programmed nursery rhymes
- Includes a retractable microphone
- Can record & playback songs
- Teaches how to clean up after pets
- Includes leash system
- Comes with pouch of plastic treats
- Compatible with other schleich toys
- Realistic-looking figurines
- Conform to strict international safety standards
- Provides peek-a-boo fun
- Pete pops quite gently
- Suitable for babies 6 months & up
- Includes a plush cat
- Everything stores inside the carrier
- Licensed product
How To Choose The Best Cat Toys For Kids
Before I get to the recommendations, I’ll share my criteria for choosing the best children’s cat toys.
It’s best to choose toys for your child’s current age and abilities. Buying something for an older age group could be a safety hazard. And buying something that’s too babyish for an older child could result in disappointment and an unused toy.
As parents, we know how important it is to choose toys that last. Broken toys waste your money and lead to upset kids. We only recommend toys that will stand up to the rigors of real kids and real play.
Toys for children who are 3 years and under are tested in the U.S. to determine if they are a choking hazard, or whether any part of the toy could become a choking hazard if it breaks (1). They are also randomly tested for the presence of lead or other toxins.
That means it is essential only to buy toys that are made or imported into the U.S. by reliable companies. You’ll have more peace of mind that way.
We’re big fans of toys that come in sturdy boxes or other containers for easy toy storage. We also look for toys that do double duty or have extra fun features to keep kids interested for longer.
Getting the most bang for your buck is important. We aim to find toys that provide value at a range of price points.
The Best Kids Cat Toys of 2021
With those points in mind, these are our picks for the 15 best cat toys for kids.
1. Hasbro Joy For All Cat
Made by Hasbro, this interactive cat toy gives the pleasure of cat ownership without the responsibilities or ongoing costs of having a pet.
Sensors in the cat’s body allow the cat to respond to touch. So, when you stroke this lifelike cat, it will open its eyes, move, and even purr with pleasure. Not only that, when they purr the Joy For All cat’s body vibrates gently just like a real feline friend.
These cats are so realistic they are also marketed as companion animals for elders who want company but can’t have a real animal. Young kids with cat allergies or those who are scared of real cats with claws and teeth may like this option.
- It responds to touch.
- It’s extremely lifelike.
- The cat has brushable fur.
- Not the most affordable option.
2. Coding Critters Scamper & Sneaker
Coding Critters is a playset, book, and robotic cat that teaches computer coding basics without a screen.
Read through the storybook with your toddler and enjoy the adventures of Scamper and Sneaker, the two playful kittens. Lay out the fun pawprints in any shape you like. Then press the direction buttons on your cat to program a movement sequence and watch it follow the pawprints.
Alternatively, you can set the cats to play mode and play with them just like any other playset.
The set includes a slide to climb, a cat toy to chase, and more.
- It helps teach coding.
- It works as a playset.
- The set comes with an enjoyable book.
- It requires batteries.
3. Fuzzikins Cozy Cats Playset
This set from Fuzzikins provides plenty of opportunity for an art activity and a trio of cat figures to play with, all in one. There are three cats in the box, each with their own sleeping bag and eye-mask, three markers, and a sheet of stickers.
Color the Fuzzikins and create cats with fur colors and patterns of your own design. Then wash the colors off and start over, as many times as you like.
If your child doesn’t feel like coloring, they can play with the cat figures or settle them down for a nap in the sleeping bags.
- The set is an excellent value.
- You can use it with any washable marker.
- It provides endless coloring opportunities.
- The markers in the box are tiny.
4. Sequence Cats Board Game
Sequence Cats is a simple game to learn, but it is enjoyable for adults who may have to play.
Each player is dealt a hand of cards. Cards have a cat picture and information about the breed. When it’s your turn, you place a token on one of the squares on the board, matching a cat in your hand.
The aim, which is simple enough for younger kids to understand, is to get five tokens in a row on the board.
Some people complain they have difficulty telling which cat is which, but this is not a problem we have had in our home.
- It’s easy to learn.
- There are minimal rules.
- The game is educational.
- It’s not a quick game.
5. Funny Cats 1000-Piece Puzzle
This puzzle is almost like 12 mini puzzles all rolled into one. The painting is of a dozen rectangles, each featuring its own cat. The cats are dressed in a variety of quirky outfits, and each is set against a different background.
This makes the puzzle tricky enough to be a challenge, but not so hard you want to sweep it off the table.
The finished puzzle is 19.25 inches by 26.5 inches, so you will need a decent-sized tabletop to put this one together.
- It’s a fun, humorous image that should appeal to kids.
- It provides hours of fun.
- The puzzle is just difficult enough without being overwhelming for older kids.
- It isn’t suited for younger puzzlers.
6. Meowsic Toy Piano by B-Toys
Play your music with traditional piano sounds or set it to sound like a banjo, an organ, bells, or cat meows. There are 20 pre-programmed nursery rhymes plus seven cat-themed songs. You can set one to play, pick up the working microphone, and sing along.
Your child can record their own songs and enjoy instant playback.
It comes with a book of lyrics for all of the pre-programmed songs, and it purrs itself to sleep after two minutes of inactivity.
- Parents may like that it has a volume control.
- It includes a retractable microphone.
- It doesn’t include promotional materials for other toys.
- The piano doesn’t feature a real cat meow sound; instead, it’s a person meowing.
- Meows are at an annoying pitch.
7. FurReal Poopalots
If your child wants a cat toy that can walk, Poopalots from FurReal will be a hit.
The cat comes with a pouch of plastic treats that you can feed to it. Then when the furry feline goes for a walk, Poopsalot does precisely what its name implies. It poops a lot.
As you might expect, this is hilarious to kids who enjoy a good bodily function joke.
The treat holder then acts as a pooper-scooper for your child to clean up after their cat.
- This toy teaches how to clean up after a pet.
- The leash system is included.
- Younger kids will love the humorous aspect.
- You can’t buy replacements for lost poops, so you might spend a fair amount of time tracking down doo-doo.
8. Schleich Farm World Playtime for Cute Cats
Approved by open-ended play expert Dr. Sandra Stone, the Schleich line of figures provides the kind of creative play opportunities crucial to a child’s development.
This cute playset includes one adult cat and two kittens, as well as a cat tree, cat bed, feeding bowl, and twine ball.
Your child can feed their cats, have them play on the cat tree, or hide in the shelter at the tree’s base.
- This set is compatible with other Schleich toys.
- They are realistic-looking figurines.
- They conform to the strictest international safety standards.
- You can purchase additional sets to expand the play value.
9. Pete The Cat Jack-In-The-Box
The classic Jack-in-the-box toy gets the Pete The Cat treatment with this retro, yet modern toy for babies and toddlers. Turn the crank to hear the music, and wait for Pete to pop gently out of the top.
Pete the Cat appears from the waist up and is a soft yet firm stuffed cat. Made from pressed metal, the edges of the box are rounded and there is no way for your child to get to the workings inside.
- The toy provides peek-a-boo fun.
- Pete pops quite gently.
- It’s a cat toy that is suitable for babies aged 6 months and up.
- Some babies may be startled at first by a Jack-in-the-box.
10. Doc McStuffins Toy Hospital On-The-Go
Toy vet sets are easy to find, but many of them have flimsy instruments that break or bend easily. Your child shouldn’t have that problem with this toy doctor kit featuring Doc McStuffins On-The-Go toy hospital.
A sturdy pet carrier does double duty as the mini hospital and a place for storing your cat and vets instruments. Your child will get a stethoscope to listen to their cat’s heart, lungs, and belly, as well as an otoscope to check your cat’s ears.
It also comes with a pet hairbrush, a food bowl, and a skirt for your cat.
- The plush cat is included.
- Everything stores inside the carrier.
- It’s a licensed product.
- The carrier can be tricky for little hands to open.
11. Pete the Cat Learn To Dress
In our home, Pete the Cat has been rocking in his school shoes for several years. We have Groovy, Pizza, Bedtime, and “naked” Petes. We can recite the books from memory, and now our youngest son can practice tying his own shoes with this Learn To Dress Pete the Cat.
Emerging dressers can learn to tackle buttons, master zippers, and conquer poppers on their favorite groovy, cool cat.
At 14.5 inches, this Pete is big enough to cuddle but compact enough to take to show and tell.
If your child isn’t a Pete fan or prefers a female kitty, there are other options out there that use the learn to dress concept.
- It helps develop fine motor skills.
- This Pete is machine washable.
- It’s a good size.
- This toy may lose his appeal when kids get older.
12. Manhattan Toy Nursing Nina Cat
Kids are obsessed with baby animals, and this set delivers more than one. Nursing Nina comes with three adorable kittens. The kittens are as soft as their mom, and each one has a different color combo and a collar of ribbon.
Inside her belly, Nina has a row of magnets. The kittens have magnets sewn into their mouths. Hold a kitten up to the right spot, and it will attach to mom’s belly as if it were feeding.
They are all extremely well made and durable. We’ve had ours for over five years and it’s still as good as new, despite being a little grubby.
- The set has more play value than a plain stuffed cat.
- It encourages nurturing play.
- The quality is top-notch.
- Nina lays in a fixed position, which doesn’t allow for tons of play opportunities.
13. FurReal Friends Daisy Plays-With-Me
Daisy is a hard-bodied robocat encased in a soft, brushable, and safe fake fur.
Wave her cat toy and she will try to catch it with a pounce, jump, or wiggle. She may even stand on her back legs for you and try to bat the toy away.
After playtime, Daisy will pad her paws on your lap and meow just like a real cat. The cat will turn itself off after two minutes of no stimulation but beware, it will continue to meow for the full two minutes.
- The toy is interactive.
- It offers cute sounds and movements
- Younger kids may get super attached to this cat, just like they would a real pet.
- No volume control, which may drive parents crazy.
- It’s too hard to cuddle in bed.
14. Brickheadz Lucky Cat
LEGO has plenty of sets that include cats, especially in the LEGO Friends line, but in most of these, the cat is an accessory rather than the star.
That’s why the Brickheadz Lucky Cat is a great pick for cat lovers. This Japanese Maneki Neko style cat is the only focus of this set.
Once built, your child’s Brickheadz will not only look good on display, but they can play with it. By toggling the lever on the cat’s back up and down, the kitty will wave its paw up and down, just like the traditional Maneki Neko.
- It’s fun to build and display.
- Since it’s LEGO, you know it’s high quality.
- It has unique screen-printed pieces.
- It’s not a challenging build so hardcore LEGO enthusiasts may not find it interesting.
15. Sentosphere Aquarellum Cats Magic Art Canvases
An excellent choice for beginners, the Cats Magic set from Sentosphere Aquarellum has everything your budding artist needs to create three cat paintings.
There are nine watercolor paints, a plastic palette, and a paintbrush. It also includes a trio of pre-printed cat pictures on cards.
Each card is embossed, and the different areas of the cats are outlines in relief. This prevents the colors from running and makes it more difficult for a young painter to go past the lines.
- It includes everything your child will need.
- The bright colors are appealing.
- The washable paint means your child won’t make a mess that can’t be cleaned up.
- Limited playtime.
The Cat That Got The Cream
A child who likes cats can be easily overrun with basic stuffed animals that are nice to cuddle. These have their place, but it’s also fun to have some cat-themed toys that inject something a little different into the day’s play.
Our list of the best cat toys for kids is curated to provide fun for feline fans of all interests and ages. Maybe even a few adult cat fans might find something on this list, too.