Before attempting to train a cat, it is important to remember why the cat was domesticated in the first place. Domestic cats were initially bred to be rodent-hunters in factories, farms, and homes. Because of this, cats are used to working independent of humans, and will generally struggle and resist training at the first stages. However, if an owner is patient and determined, cats can acquire impressive skills. In the below pages, we will explore the different measures that cat owners can take to equip their cat with good habits and polite indoor-living skills.
House Training/Potty Training
In this section we will discuss all elements of training a cat to be well mannered in your home. One thing to bear in mind, is that a feline’s instinct is to explore and put his claws and teeth to good use. If not provided a healthy way to express those instincts, he may direct them destructively and your furniture or carpet could suffer for it. However, when a cat is properly trained about what behaviors are acceptable, he will learn to avoid human furniture, food, other pets or fish, etc. The owner can learn specific tactics that help a cat understand the boundaries, and communicate what is acceptable, with treats and sounds to reinforce the lesson. One of the primary training responsibilities for pet owners is to help a cat become potty trained. Most people use kitty litter boxes in a well-ventilated area of the house to offer the cat a designated space. However, the most dedicated of pet-parents have succeeded in training their cats to actually use a human toilet. Though the process may be laborious, it is a rewarding reminder that cats can effectively be trained to do surprising things!
Traveling & Cat Obedience Training
Cats are disinclined to enjoy traveling in cars, or being moved around in crates. As one of the most independent domestic animals, removing a cat’s ability to move at will, may seem borderline torturous to the confined kitty. An owner can lessen the severity of the cat’s aversion to her crate, by practicing a few useful training techniques to turn the dynamic around. The more your cat is able to acquaint herself with the scenario of being carried in a crate, the less traumatic every family vacation or trip to the vet will be. In addition to training your cat on how to be a pleasant travel companion, learning some useful obedience tricks will be helpful as well. A cat can learn to obey commands though the use of treats and audio association training to sit, roll, lie down, and even high-five. Some trainers have even succeeded in training their cats to do unusual jumping acrobatics, play drums, or contort their bodies to do unique stunts. This section will cover training tips and suggestions that will help pet-owners understand their cat and establish better obedience in the home.
When training a cat to do anything, whether traveling, using the litter box, or simply staying off the fridge, no animal responds well to any form of punishment. Cats especially will simply develop a fear of their owner, and will become more distant or defensive. Fear is never a good emotion to instill in any pet or person, and ought to be avoided at all costs in the training sessions. Cats learn through positive reinforcement and repetition, instead of punishment and isolation. Devoted pet-parents should learn the balance between clear and consistent upholding of the rules, without ever becoming harsh or inconsistent. Preserving this rapport will cause greater peace and harmony between animal and master.