Dogs always come first when it comes to training pets. Sit, shake, roll over, it seems as if pooches take first place whenever it comes to teaching a pet different tricks and mannerisms. However, in the right environment, cats can be trained just like dogs can. Sure, cats are a little more stubborn than their canine counterparts, but with the right motivation your cat can be just as receptive as any pooch.
Cats truly are their own beings, and they like to do things in their own time and space. Therefore, any cat owners looking to train their feline friends will have to themselves be extremely patient, motivated and provide them a reward in the form of affection, play or treats. The last you thing you want to do is overwhelm them with information, as they will become easily confused, distracted, and lose track of what you are asking from them.
Training your cat, keeping them healthy and finding the best cat insurance in Australia are all important things for your kitten’s overall wellbeing, so let’s look into how you can teach them a few positive things to take on at home.
Training Doesn’t Have to Be an Afterthought
Most cat owners don’t think about training. However, they would at least like their cat to know a few things, especially where to go to the toilet. Litter training should be a number one priority for all cat owners, as the last thing you want is for them to start using your carpet or clothes for their toilet.
Training your cat to use the litter box is pretty straightforward if you get on the front paw early. Cats are typically clean felines and have a natural tendency to bury their droppings, making it easy to train them with this.
The best way to train your kitten to use the litter box is to set them in one as soon as they arrive, allowing them to examine and sniff the litter. Don’t move the litter box once you’ve shown them, as the readjustment might confuse them. Place your kitten in the box immediately after meals and after they wake up from a snooze. If you notice your cat might need to go, with signs like crouching in the one spot or sniffing around, pick the cat up and place them in the box.
Finally, reward your kitten with a treat or toy when they start doing the right thing. And absolutely do not scold your kitten if it makes a mistake – this will only cause stress and anxiety, confusing the cat even more and perpetuating the problem!
Bad Behaviour Can Be Trained Away
If you notice your kitten doing something they shouldn’t be doing, it is highly likely that this is a result of their natural instincts. For example, cats are born to scratch, and might find themselves doing so on your couch soon after arriving home. Bad behaviour can be trained away with gentle encouragement and reward when they do the right thing.
For example, with scratching, you can bring in a scratching post that your cat might like to get ahold of instead of the couch. Gently encourage them to use the post as opposed to the couch.
Positivity Is Key
When training a dog or cat out of a bad habit it is best to provide positive encouragement. Cats don’t respond to being yelled at or scolded. However, if a cat is showing signs of continued aggressive behaviour, using a clap or hissing sound might be a good way to stamp out the aggressive stuff.
Finally, be patient with your kitten: they can’t understand what we’re saying to them but they can understand gentle encouragement. Allow them to take their time and soon you will see your kitten developing wonderful behavioural patterns.