Isn’t it fun to know that you can teach your cat to sit still and prevent them getting in the way while you’re bustling around the house? However, training a cat is relatively different from training a dog. While dogs are lively and ready to serve you, your feline companions need a much delicate approach when you are training them to do some cool tricks. Patience and practice are crucial aspects that you need to implement for your cats grasp the ideas you introduce.
But rather than the trick itself, years of studies prove to us that interacting with your kitties keeps their brain moving, thus enhancing their daily mood. On top of that, it also boosts their focus which means they can maintain their alertness for a longer period. So, what are we waiting for? Let’s get training!
What you need
1. Clicker or Ballpoint Pen
By using a clicker during training, the sound it emits simultaneously reinforce the positive behaviour you approve of that your cat does. If you don’t have a clicker, a ballpoint pen works just fine, as the sounds it produces when you retract gives the same signal as a clicker.
Good quality treat is the best way to go for training your cat to sit. This can be any food they love, preferably dry food as it is easier to fetch and give to them the instant your cat settles in a position you want. The food should be tantalizing enough for them to eager for more. Most cats prefer soft food like tuna, turkey or chicken. But a dry food with a strong smell will make do, so long it entices them throughout the training.
Now that you are geared, these are 7 easy steps for training your cat to sit
1. Clear the space
Take any kind of distractions that may stray your cat’s attention from you out of the comfortable spot you choose. These may be their squeaky plush toys or the cat water fountain in your room. Cats can be sensitive to excessive lighting too, so draw the curtains/blinds close for a minimum distraction.
2. Sit with your cat
You want to be on the ground as well to show your cat you want to engage with them without giving out dominance that will intimidate them. This is helpful to encourage your cat for a sitting position.
3. Voice or Action Cue
Before getting them to do the sit, your furry pet needs to first know the cue. Start with a simple, repeatable sound or action that will be easy for your cats to understand.
4. Let them sniff
Give your cat the treat and let them see and scent it, enough to want to stay close to you.
5. Hold the treat above their head
While keeping it out of reach, slowly bring the treat in your hand upward until it levels to your cat’s forehead, and raise higher until they are staring up at it. This should naturally tempt them to sit down as their eyes transfixed on the heavenly smelling gem.
6. Reward the kitty!
Initially, we want to reward any movement that is close enough to a sitting position. When your cat makes the slightest motion of a sit, hit the clicker and instantly reward them with a treat, so they associate the clicking sound to the food. With time, your cat will gradually lower their rear closer to the ground. As they become more proficient, begin giving them the treat only at the moment when they successfully nail a good sitting posture.
Avoid undesirable behaviour
If your cat jumps, paw or meow for the treat, promptly remove the food and wait until they calm down. When they recline to a sit, only then repeat the clicking and reward.
7. Practice often and consistently
In each training session, it’s best to repeat the steps 20 to 30 times only. More than that might frustrate the cat. However, until they are able to sit at one cue, it’s compulsory that you maintain this for several days until they fully fall into the habit.
We have extra trick you can add with training your cat to sit
Politely Ring The Bell
For this, you will clearly need a bell. There are two kinds of call bells. One where we hoomans usually use, or the other one specifically made for pets to use. The difference is the base for them to press on. We recommend that you get a pet bell as it provides a flat top that complements your kitty’s paws.
How do I train my cat to ring the bell?
Place a bell somewhere easy for your cat to access, usually on the floor right in front of them. Give the voice or action cue for them to sit, before having them pat the bell or watch until they pat on it. The moment it rings, press the clicker and reward them the delicious treat.
Your cat may start to meow for the food. Simply ignore it. Patience is the key here. Wait, no matter how long, until they tap on the bell. When you give them a treat right after, they will figure out the process and redo the action. You can give them the treat first the second they sit, then give another when they ring the bell.
Training a cat to sit might not be successful to everyone, but it is achievable if you are willing to make time for it. When it comes to this, just focus on the goal which is to have them anticipate and respond to what you ask them to do, regardless of the minutes and hours.
Avoid punishing your cats even if they refuse to obey you. What would you do if your mother hit you for making a small mistake? You will want to avoid her the next time, right? It’s the same for cats. As Jackson Galaxy said, cats are like toddlers that can reach the ceiling. They don’t understand that you are mad at them, but they will relate the unpleasant sensation to you, which will make them less likely to want to go near you, whatmore listen to your command.
Be kind to your cat. Leave them alone if they still can’t understand you today, and try again tomorrow. They may need more time to learn a new routine than dogs, but the love they have for you equals to their canine friends ❤️️
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