A fun and inexpensive summertime backyard activity for Spokane cat owners is clicker training their cats. Cats can now enter neighborhood pet talent contests and win!. Yes, cats can be trained; you just need to know how to do it.
The scientific word for the process is operant conditioning which basically means you can take advantage of your cat’s natural inclination to replicate an action with a positive end result. .
The clicker is a tiny plastic mechanism with a metal strip that makes a clicking sound when it’s pushed. The worth of the clicking sound is that it is wholly distinctive within the cat’s environment. Unlike the sound of your voice, which your cat hears all the time, the sound of the click becomes a clear and concise form of communication. The unmistakable click is a sound that he or she can inimitably associate with the most sought after behavior. The treat at once follows the click, reinforcing the positive rewards of the desired behavior.
First get your cat’s attention and give the clicker a click. Follow with a treat.
Next, begin with something easy that your cat is likely to do on his own such as sitting still, coming when called, touching your hand with his or her paw or nose, scratching on a post or following a target object like a feathered wand. Only click once per behavior. Multiple clicks can confuse your cat. Always keep your cat’s training sessions very brief.
Then give full attention to persuading your cat into a position area on his or her own. Your cat’s movements should be chosen by the cat, even if they are unintended, Your cat will progressively relate the click with the movement you’re training him or her for, whether it’s sitting, begging on hind legs, or jumping on a stool. It also works for not jumping on tables or counter tops.
Next, reward for small movements toward your goal, and then mold a behavior by raising the goal. For instance, if you’re training your cat to enter his or her carrier, at first reward for any steps he or she takes towards the carrier, then for walking up to the carrier, then for going inside.
Instead of punishing for bad behavior, compensate your cat on good behaviors with a nice reward. Such as, rather than punishing a cat for scratching on the furniture, reward him/her for using the scratching post.
Be tolerant, some cats will associate the click with the treat instantly, while others may be a bit slower to catch on. Either way, click and treat is a very successful technique and something every family member can take part in.