It’s a question that many pet-owners have asked over the years and the answers have been pretty mixed. Can you train a cat? We think you can, but we also believe that it depends on the cat. Any cat owners will tell you that a cat isn’t going to do anything it doesn’t want to do. Cats can be pretty diva-like, and so they often follow their own agendas. But if you’re nice, they might just let you into their worlds.
Once you develop trust with your cat, it’s amazing what tricks you can teach them. The following are some tips to help you get started.
It can be Done
Before you begin, you need to believe it’s possible. If you begin with the idea that cats can’t be trained because they’re not dogs, you won’t be able to train your cat, or you will lose interest in doing so, and so will they! You both need to be excited for this to happen.
The easiest way to believe something is possible is to see it for yourself. This adorable video of Jonasek the cat giving high fives is a great example. There are more like him sprawling their cuteness across the web, so dive in and watch some of these inspiring cat videos when you have the chance!
Make it Enjoyable
You have to make the trick an enjoyable experience for your cat every time. Positive reinforcement and patience are key. Purchase cat food to use as treats, instead of actual treats, because it works better and is healthier for your cat.
Only use a piece at a time so you don’t over feed your cat. Give lots of praise and pet your cat when you give the treat so they feel loved and special. In time, your cat will associate the request you make (like high five) with praise and love, creating a positive experience they’re happy to repeat.
Repeat, Repeat, Repeat
Be sure to repeat the commands and training sessions appropriately. Sticking to about ten minutes a day is a good way to make sure it doesn’t get irritating to your cat. Pick a command and get your kitty to practice it with you over and over again for about ten minutes at the same time every day, so that they can anticipate the act. This will create a pattern and make it easy for the cat to be successful at learning the new trick.
Remember, Hill Country Pet Sitters is here for all of your pet sitting and grooming needs and can give you advice on caring for many domestic animals. Call me today at 830-624-9284.