When comparing cats to dogs, usually the dog wins the intelligence race. Cats just seem to always have nonchalant expressions that make them appear to be totally unresponsive. While there are a high number of professionals who train dogs for a living, one hardly hears about training a cat. Nevertheless, as with most mammals, behavior can be conditioned with practice and cats are definitively not the exception.
One thing that cat owners need to always keep in mind is that training a cat requires a lot of patience. If you really want your cat to behave, you need stimuli to encourage a positive response. Cats can always be tempted with treats.
Usually, we want to train cats to stop doing unwanted behavior. Punishing a cat is definitively not the solution. On the contrary, it can cause some emotional and health issues for your cat. The most common cat behaviors that owners address when training a cat are:
- Scratching furniture or people
- Behaving violently with other cats and sometimes people
- Marking their territory through urination
- Displaying stressful behavior
- Not using the litter box
Since some cats respond to physiological conditions, it is a good idea to bring your cat to a veterinarian to rule out any underlying conditions. This will help you better address any issue and avoid many headaches.
The next step into changing your cat’s behavior is to remotely correct them. This means that you must make those environments you want to keep them away from by placing objects that are unpleasant to them or make the area(s) uncomfortable. For instance, you can place aluminum foil or sticky paper on areas you don´t want your cat to touch. Put some bitter substance into those places your cat loves to chew. You could also use unpleasant odors and sounds to deter your cat from doing or going to places they are not allowed.
You can change your cat’s behavior but it takes patience, patience, patience, and determination on your part.