How to Correct a Naughty Kitty




I have been told that correcting naughty cat behavior can't be done.

I have also been told that cats are too independent, not trainable, very sneaky and definately untrustworthy.

Not So, I say.

Cats are intelligent and very sensitive. They can be taught tricks as you have seen in the movies and on television.

Cats are being trained (believe it or not) to help the hearing impaired respond to doorbells, telephones and smoke alarms.

If your cat has developed some habits that you are unhappy with, who do you think is to blame?

It is you.

Why do I say that?

The answer is simple, you neglected to provide the "stuff" kitty needs to satisfy his/her natural instincts.

Cats are active animals they like to jump, climb, scratch, play and hunt. This is how nature made them. A more masterful creation you cannot find anywhere.

If they do not have things to scratch, places to climb and a toy mouse or two to hunt, they will make their own entertainment.

If that means scratching the corner of the couch or your new stereo speakers, so be it.

Your cat is dependent on you.

If you were too busy to learn "cat 101" and kitty has taken over, there is still time to correct your cat's unacceptable behavior.

So let's begin and take one thing at a time:

Furniture Scratching: Why does the cat scratch your couch, chairs or stereo speakers?

Boredom, maybe, but most likely kitty needs a place to stretch its claws and help loosen its dead nail sheaths. Scratching is as necessary to a cat as breathing is.

Solution: The need for a good scratching post is the answer.

A good scratching post is about 30 inches to 3 feet tall, very sturdy (won't fall over) made of wood and covered with a sisal type of material or regular carpet turned inside out (backside showing) fastened on it.

This gives the cat's claws something sturdy to dig into.

Rub catnip into the material once or twice a week until the cat gets used to using it.

Some cats prefer horizontal things to scratch.

Pet stores have a cardboard surface that works well and you can make a wooden one by getting a long flat board at least 4 to 5 inches wide and 25 to 30 inches long and staple some carpet to it (again the wrong side showing.)

If you are wondering why I say the wrong side of the carpet showing the answer is simple, first of all you don't want the cat to get used to shredding carpet and secondly the wrong side allows the cat to really get its claws into the material and stretch, which is one of the purposes in doing the scratching in the first place.

I have found a really neat scratching post at Only Natural Pet Store that is reasonable in price. The post is called "SmartCat Scratching Ramp." It can be used vertically, horizontally or placed in front of whatever kitty is scratching.

Now that we have the scratching post, how do we re-direct our kitty's attention to it and not the furniture.

First you have to show the cat what fun it is (the catnip helps) and secondly for a few days you have to make whatever piece of furniture that was kitty's first choice undesirable.

This can be done by covering the area with aluminum foil attached by whatever means is best or using a piece of contact paper (sticky side out) and attached.

There is also a type of tape known as "Sticky Paws" that comes in two different sizes that can be purchased at Only Natural Pet Store It is transparent and will not damage furniture. It too, is reasonable in price.

If you are wondering why kitty loves scratching the couch or the speakers here is your answer.

Cats are attracted to certain kinds of material: linen, burlap, knits, leather or any other rough feeling fabric is great for scratching.

Smooth fabrics like cottons hold no interest.

Keep this in mind the next time you go furniture shopping.

It may take a day or two for you to convince kitty to use the scratching post, but do not give up.

It is very important that you do not yell, scream or hit the cat for doing what is does naturally.

All you will accomplish is to make the cat fear you and it will wait until you are out of sight to do it again.

However, a sharp NO might just work fine.

Litter Box Problems Going outside the litter box or in other places within the house can be caused by a multitude of reasons.

The first one is to make certain your cat is not having a medical problem. A quick trip to the vet can answer that question.

The second thought is has something changed in the household? Cats do not like new things, changes in routine or sometimes new people in the house.

Did you get another cat?

Are you cleaning the litter box regularly? Cats demand clean litter boxes.

Did something happen or someone scare the cat when it was using the litter box? A picture dropping off the wall or someone yelling at the cat, while it was using the litter box would be enough to get the cat to stop using it. Is the box too small?

If it is the same box kitty used as a kitten it could be too small now.

Did you change the type of litter you were using?

Sit down for a moment or two and rethink about when the accidents started and what was going on.

Solution:If at all possible discover what the problem was that caused the upset and try to correct it.

If the cat got scared by something falling or by someone yelling move the location of the box. This will help remove the incident from the cat's mind.

If all else fails and you are not certain of the cause put kitty in a spare quiet room with a clean litter box, its toys and food and water.

Do not put the litter box near the food supply. Cats do not like their bathroom near their dinner.

Spend time with the cat, praise it whenever you see it use the litter box.

If the cat continues to use the litter box while confined to the room for at least a week and all seems to be well, allow the cat free rein again in the house and see what happens.

If it happens again re-evaluate the situation and confine the cat once more.

Just be certain there are no medical problems.

If kitty has left his/her/mark on the rug with a wet stain or a feces stain. It is important to clean it up as quickly as possible.

Do not rub wet stains blot then with a clean towel. Rubbing only makes the stain go deeper. It is important to use an enzyme cleaner, white vinegar or a citrus cleaner and water.

Do not use ammonia as it will continure to smell like a place kitty wants to use again and again.

A black light is useful in finding old stains as well as new ones. They can be found in pet stores, craft shops or janitorial supply stores at a very inexpensive price.

The problem with removing the odor "forever" is that the the Uric acid in the urine does not disolve when you clean it and needs a special cleaner to disolve the crystals.

I have found that "Out Spot Stain and Odor Remover" does a great job in cleaning up urine, vomit and feces stains. It is guaranteed and is not terribly expensive. It can be found at Only Natural Pet Store.

Counter/table Jumping:Cats love height: and jumping up on things is what cats do, however, with a little effort on your part it can be corrected.

Solution:If jumping up on the counter or table is a new activity for your cat it is possible that a "sharp NO" and placing the cat on the floor a time or two might do the trick.

If that doesn't work and the activity has been going on for a while. Place some contact paper on the counter or table sticky side up for a few days or place some old pots or empty cans on the very edge of the counter or table. When the cat jumps up on the counter or table the items will fall off and make a loud noise.

Cats do not like sticky things and they do not like loud noises, after one or two tries they will find something else to do.

If possible create a high perch for kitty to climb up to and sit on. I have made a place for my female to sit and observe on the very top of one of the pieces of our entertainment center.

Early Wakeups:Cats were created to be nocturnal creatures, I guess to catch mice and rats, which are also nocturnal critters.. However, we humans would rather sleep.

So if your kitty has decided that you need to get up and play at four in the morning there are a few things you can do to discourage this.

Solution:Do not get up to feed or entertain the cat, doing so will only reinforce the behavior as kitty thinks this is what you should be doing anyway.

If it is food the cat wants be sure to feed kitty just before you go to bed.

If it is play kitty wants try tiring it out just before bedtime with a toy mouse attached to a wand.

If none of the above works try what I do when my Smokey comes calling at odd hours. I quietly hiss "no" and give him a gentle shove off bed. He usually goes away and leaves me alone.

It did take a few times of doing this to convince him I was not going to get up.

Here a few other ideas I have gathered from research; the easiest one is "shut" the bedroom door.

Of course kitty may decide to bang against it or try sticking its paw underneath the door and rattle it. In that case you can remove kitty and place him/her in the bathroom until you wake up.

The neatest idea I found is if you have a "tank vacuum" cleaner place it near your bed so you can reach it and turn it on for a moment, the noise will scare the cat and of course your sleeping partner, too, but what the heck! The cat will eventually get the idea and leave you alone.

However, in my searching on the Internet I found a very useful device that can be used for many "bad cat" behaviors and I thought I would pass it on to you. It is an "ultrasonic device" that can only be heard by the cat. It will keep kitty away from any area you do not want it in. The device is called CatScram and can be found on the Internet. There are several sources that have it. It is fairly reasonably priced considering the many uses you will be able to find for it.

Spraying Spraying is different than urinating on the floor. Urine makes a puddle, spraying decorates the wall or a piece of furniture. It is a vertical action.

Why do cats (mostly males) spray?

They do it to mark their territory. Male cats that have not been nuetered are usually the culprits though female cats have been known to do it, too.

That is why it is important to get your cats nuetered or spayed at an early age.

The first thing to do is take your cat to the vet to make certain that there are no medical reasons for the behavior.

Once that is ruled out, stress or the need to mark its territory are other reasons cats spray.

Solution: First of all if your cat is spraying you need to remove the odor from the walls or furniture. Use an emzyne cleaner do not use any ammonia type cleaner, a citrus cleaner will work also.

Removing the cat from the areas that it has been spraying is also a good idea if it is at all possible.

If your cat has a window perch and can see other cats outside this may be the cause of its spraying, your cat is marking its territory. Closing the drapes or shutting the door may be the answer.

If the spraying is something new the cat has started, stress maybe the problem.

Stop and think of what may have changed within the household. Cats do not like change. Removing the stress factor is usually the answer, but cannot always be done.

Then you need to try and help your cat adjust to the changes with a great deal of love and care.

Your vet can suggest some medication that will have a calming effect on your cat and possibly help in adjusting to what ever the problem is.

There is a new product on the market that can be purchased at pet stores and on the Internet called FeliwayTM it is a spray that you use on the spots your cat has been spraying on (after you remove the scent.)

It contains the scent of "facial pheromones" this scent has a calming effect on cats and about 90% of the time cats will stop spraying on those areas.

In these few pages we have tried to hit upon a few of the most troubling behaviors that most cats have.

They really aren't bad behaviors, they are just cats doing what cats do.

Patience and a little time on your part can re-direct your kitty's energy into other things.

Cats need to be played with, they really need to be talked to, the sound of your voice is soothing and it helps the cat feel a part of your world.

I talk to my cats so much my husband never knows when I am talking to him at, least that is his excuse when he doesn't answer me.

I hope what I have written has helped solve some of your problems.

Take time to enjoy your cat and know that cats do not do anything for spite, they really don't know what "spite" is.

Cats just enjoy being what they are - cats.

Independent Thoughts

If you feel that you are at the end of your rope, you feel there is no light at the end of the tunnel because Kitty has both ears covered and won't listen to you at all! Fear not! Help is on the way, I have discovered a site and a book that is the ultimate in training your cat to behave! Yes, I said "training" your cat and I have not been drinking. It is possible to train the Kitty to act like a normal cat and behave! If you have a few moments, may I suggest you visit this site and see what it has to offer, your sanity may be saved and kitty will live a nice long normal life with you. Click Here!



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