Cat Training - All You Need to Know!
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How to Train Your Cat?
You can train your cat to do almost everything you can imagine. The possibilities of cat training are endless but not everything you can teach your cat is equally important.
Understanding why you want to train your cat and what you intend to achieve will help you define the best training system.
Your goal might be to make coexisting in your home easier or if there's certain behavior that you would like to correct, you probably should start by teaching your cat basic discipline skills like "come when called", "No", "Sit and Stay"...
Maybe you only want to teach your cat a few fun tricks and work on your bond and communication, probably there are other places where you can start.
Or you love the outdoors and are looking forward to adventuring with your cat, taking them for walks, or traveling with you...complete guide so that you can start on your own, for free.
In this cat training guide you are going to learn about the 3 main ways in which you can train your cat:
1) Clicker Training Cats
2) Adventure Cat Training
3) Cat Talking Buttons
Clicker training cats is the easiest way to take your cat to the cat school.
Clicker training uses positive reinforcement to get your cat to repeat certain behaviors and disincentivize others.
Not everything you can teach your cat has the same level of priority. While some tricks are cool and will attract the eyes of those around you, others will make your life with your cat more comfortable and rewarding for both you and your cat.
Our recommendation is to start with tricks that are going to help you bond with your cat and once that's achieved, advance to the party tricks and tricks that will make your cat insta-famous.
Once your cat has mastered the beginning of cat training and some helpful behaviors are part of your routine, then you can start working on getting some tricks under your belt.
Some basic cat tricks you can teach your cat are: High Five, Fist Bump, Spin, Lay Down, or Roll Over
Advanced tricks are those which require several sessions to work towards a determined skill because there's not one single movement that will get your cat to perform them on their own.
An example of these tricks are: Jumping through your arms, Jumping on your Shoulder amongst others, which we'll dig into in the Adventure Cat training part of this article.
If you want to keep on learning about clicker training cats, we have 3 resources for you to choose from: A Cat Training Guide, a Blog, and our YouTube Channel:
Adventure cats are cats that get to enjoy the outdoors in a controlled way.
There are 3 big subgroups of outdoor cats: Stray (they don't have a home), Outdoor/Indoor (they have a home but free access outdoors, unsupervised), and Adventure Cats (which have access outdoors only under supervision). There's a 4th type of outdoor cat which are those cats lucky enough to have a catio (They can access outdoors but they can't interact with other animals, preventing them from being predators or prey).
While we believe that any contact with the outdoors is positive for a cat, we only support controlled or supervised exposure, because it's safer for the cats and the environment.
Like in Clicker Training, the key to going on adventures with your cat is to move at a pace that helps your cat be comfortable.
The best age to start adventure training your cat is today. Kittens have a better time learning new skills and new experiences and habituation. This does not mean that adult cats can't enjoy the lifestyle.
Caution note: Cats should have all vaccinations and be protected against ticks and fleas before heading outdoors.
This is the most important step when adventure training a cat and it often gets overlooked.
Cats won't appreciate wearing a harness, particularly not before understanding that harnessed is the way they get to explore outdoors.
The process of introducing a cat to a harness is simple, you can read this article to learn more.
The best way to put a harness on a cat is by asking the cat to sit and stay.
This system is the best not only because it reduces the stress on you and the cat, but also because it will avoid your cat door dashes when the door opens (they will be used to waiting until the harness is on to be let out).
Check out this article about putting a harness on a cat.
Despite it can seem overwhelming, there's not much you need to take your cat outdoors, but the further you go and the more days you stay out, the more complicated it gets.
If you don't know what harness to choose for your cat, take a look at this article.
If you want to keep on learning about adventure cat training, we have 3 resources for you to choose from: A Cat Training Guide, a Blog, and our YouTube Channel:
Pair buttons with words and meanings to teach your cat to talk with you!
All you need is a sound board or a mat with communication buttons.
Yes, they do. Cats can learn to use talking buttons. There are cats that can understand and use over 20 buttons to communicate with their pawrents.
Teaching a cat to press a button can be achieved in a couple sessions with a cat that already understands clicker training.
Getting your cat to understand what each button means will take a little longer. Some cats start pressing buttons to communicate in a month but some will take 2 or 3 months until they start deliverately using the buttons to talk to their guardians.
The first thing you need to achieve is to help your cat understand that buttons can be pressed. The best way to get your cat to press a button is by using target training.
Start by teaching your cat words that they already understand or things that your cat is already requesting.
Side note: avoid using food or treats as first words because that might accelerate learning at first, it will delay progression and generate frustration or overuse.
Cats weigh less than dogs and their paws are smaller.
It is going to be easier for cats to use buttons that sit next to each other on the buttons mat.
Communication buttons that are easy to help will also help your cat press the buttons more efficiently.