Many people train their dogs how to roll over and perform other tricks. While you may know that cats are smart, did you know that most cats can be taught to perform tricks? Since dogs are interested in pleasing their masters and cats are not, the training methods that work with canines may not work with cats.
First you will need to decide what trick to begin with. Select a behavior that your cat already does frequently. Since felines tend to swat at moving objects, you might be able to parlay that action into giving you a high five.
Cats often respond to the use of rewards in training. Give tiny pieces of the cat’s favorite food or treats as the reward. You may have to try several different types of food or treats to find one that will motivate your pet. Once you find a reward that works, you may want to limit the treat to your training sessions. Cats do not react positively to training tactics such as giving praise or extra playtime.
When you first start training sessions, provide a treat whenever your pet does the desired behavior. When the cat has perfected the trick, switch to providing the treat occasionally so that a reward is not expected every time.
Felines are very sensitive to any show of negative emotions on your part. Be patient, and end the session if you become frustrated so that your pet does not learn to associate displeasure with training.
Negative reinforcement may be effective with some cats. The best method is squirting your animal with water when you see an undesirable behavior such as jumping on the counter. Yelling will only scare him or her, and no training will result. Felines also react negatively to harsh punishment, so physical force should never be used on your pet.
Cat training can be a difficult process since they have their own ideas about what they will and will not do. You can learn how to teach a cat tricks or to not do certain behaviors such as hanging out on your kitchen counter. Although cat training can be difficult since they are not very interested in learning what you want them to, with patience and the right training techniques, you can learn how to teach a cat tricks or to behave in ways that are acceptable to you.