Cats Training Tips
1. Use Treats — The Right Kind
For many cats, who generally tend to be more selective about what they
eat than their canine counterparts, it takes something more special than
regular kibble to get them motivated. Diced turkey, shredded pieces of
chicken, or premium cat treats will prove more effective. It’s just a matter of
finding out what your cat likes best.
2. Condition Your Kitten
Cats are naturally smart animals. Try starting slowly with a simple trick just
to show your cat what sort of good things (i.e. treats) can occur during
these initially confusing training sessions. Remember to always hold the
treat up to your cat’s nose so he or she can get a good sniff and know a
reward is at stake. Continue holding the treat in your cat’s line of vision
until whatever command you’ve issued has been performed. Once it has,
immediately reward your cat. With serious repetition, this will establish a
relationship between behavior and reward in your kitty’s mind.
3. Practice Makes Perfect
Repeat training processes until your cat makes a connection, but take care
not to overwork your feline friend, as they get worn out quite easily. Start
by teaching just one command at a time, and limit training sessions to 10 to
15 minutes maximum. Repeat the routine daily, however, as your cat might
forget all it has learned otherwise.
4. Try Using a “Clicker” to Teach Your Cat
Animal trainers have long used distinctive sounds such as whistles and
clicks as reinforcers of good behavior. Today, plastic “clicker” kits are a
popular way of conditioning animals. Initiating a click right after a
successfully executed behavior, then immediately giving your cat a treat
will eventually lead your pet to automatically associate the click with an
imminent reward, meaning as soon as the click is heard, he or she will
know they’ve done the right thing. Eventually, you won’t even need a treat
every single time.
5. Never Discipline
Cats respond extremely poorly to punishment; instead of making any
constructive association between a bad behavior and the resulting
scolding, a cat will typically just run away in confusion and fear.
Additionally, punishment creates stress, which is one of the most common
catalysts for problematic behavior in cats. Even more so than with dogs,
it’s imperative you reward your cats for their positive behavior rather than
condemning them for their negative behavior.