Cat Behaviour and Training

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As diffurcult as it may be to believe, cats can be trained to change their ways and bring you more peace and tranquillity around the house. While positive reinforcement training may work for dogs, it’s a little trickier for cats. Our feline friends need more of a disruption to their primal behaviours and then some redirection so they know what you want from them. So, if your cat is scratching the side of the couch, what she’s really saying is that she needs an adequate place to practise her instinctive behaviours – maybe it’s time for an upgrade to her scratching post or cat tree.

How long does it take to train a cat?

This depends on the cat, how much time and effort you put into training her, and how consistent you are with sticking to the rules. Browse this Cat Behaviour and Training category on Pet Hero to find the tools you’ll need to change your cat’s behaviour. For your cat to do what you want, she must want to choose something different and, as a cat owner, you may know that it’s very difficult to get a cat to change her mind! 

How can I control my cat’s behaviour?

First, it’s important to build a bond with your cat so that she is more in tune with what you want and don’t want. She needs plenty of toys – especially puzzle toys – to keep her busy and entertained. This will decrease the likelihood of her climbing the curtains, scratching the couch and getting up to mischief. If you don’t want your cat in a certain area of your house – for instance, marking against the furniture or using your indoor plants as a litterbox – you can use repellent sprays and granules to communicate with her to stay away. To deter your cat from scratching furniture or carpets, try furniture strips, which are not very pleasant for cats to scratch.

While your cat is learning what you don’t want her to do, it’s important to also communicate what you do want her to do. Don’t want her scratching here? Set up a brand-new and appealing scratching post over there. Don’t want her doing her cat business here? Place a brand-spanking-new litterbox with her favourite litter over there.