We probably don’t have to tell you that cats make adorable pets. Fluffy’s charming meows, endearing face, and lovable antics have all helped her earn a special place in our hearts … and on our laps. However, our feline friends aren’t purrfect. In fact, they can have a few bad habits! Read on as a local Brant Hills, ON vet offers some helpful tips on teaching your kitty some manners.
It’s much easier to teach a kitten good manners than it is to try and break bad habits in adult cats. If your feline pal is still young, start teaching her what is expected of her right away. Kitties are quite capable of learning that they should not jump on the counters or attack their owners’ fingers!
We know, it can be annoying to realize that Fluffy scratched up your armchair or knocked a plant off your windowsill. Kitties aren’t exactly at their most lovable when they are pouncing on our toes, either. However, you should never punish your frisky pet for misbehaving. This may actually backfire, and leave your cat feeling anxious, angry, or scared. Try just clapping your hands and saying ‘Bad Kitty’ or ‘No’ in a stern tone. You can also stomp your foot. If that doesn’t work, make a loud noise or squirt your feline buddy with water. The point is to cause your furball to form a bad association with the undesirable behaviour, without causing her to become wary or frightened of you.
Negative reinforcement often backfires with cats, as noted above. That’s one reason it’s so important to reward Fluffy when she is behaving properly. Offer your kitty toys, treats, and praise when she is being good, and pet her if she likes being cuddled. This will also help you form a stronger bond with your furry little friend.
Did you know that boredom is often a big factor in bad kitty behaviours? Fluffy may love to nap, but she quickly gets restless and uneasy with nothing to do. Provide your fuzzy buddy with lots of fun toys, cat furniture, boxes and paper bags to explore, and, of course, a good window view. This will help keep your furry friend entertained.
Please reach out to us, your local Brant Hills, ON vet clinic, anytime. We are all happy to help!