The most effective cat training is best done early. If you bring home an older cat, start training as soon as possible and hope they didn’t scratch much in their previous home. Kitten training is usually easier because kittens have not had much chance to form bad habits. When your cat is still young, he is more open and responsive to training.
To stop your cat from scratching, it helps to understand why they do scratch. Cats do not just scratch to sharpen their nails. They scratch so that they mark their territory. They want to let other cats that might come along know that this area is taken. They also scratch for exercise, as you’ll notice that they always stretch as they scratch. In addition, scratching helps the cats to remove older layers of their nails, so don’t panic if you find pieces of nails around the house. This is quite normal.
You can purchase a number of different toys from all pet stores that will allow you to exercise your cats hunting abilities. There are balls that you can roll away from you that your cat can chase. There are even small soft toy mice on the end of a string that allow you to pull the mouse along the floor and again your cat can chase them. Spending at least half an hour playing with your cat in this manner will really help them to get rid of any excess energy.
Reward them for good behavior. Cats are creatures that love rewards and fear punishment. Cats will only do things that they find pleasurable and rewarding to do. Reward your cat for good behavior. Give rewards such as treats, sweet talking or gently stroking the cat to let him know that you approve of the way he is acting.
Never use any form of physical punishment such as hitting or swatting. Physical punishment will not train your cat to stop doing whatever it is doing; it will only train your cat to be afraid of you.
Do not use harsh or bitter tones to reprimand your cat; instead a gentle hug, caress, or a whisper has a longer lasting effect. Your relationship with your cat should be fun, rewarding, playful and interesting. Sometimes this change alone will solve your cat behavior problem. Cats when they are bored are known to become overly active and destructive. By playing with your cat daily and giving him regular relaxing massages can help to calm your kitty down. Cats normally stop using their litter box when they feel neglected. With regular sessions of attention and play time, even litter box problems can vanish almost overnight.
Cat’s don’t like water; that is a well known fact. However, any cat can be trained to tolerate a bath. Use the warm water, because a cat’s normal temperature is higher than humans. A hot bath for a human is a normal temperature for cats. If the cat shivers, the water is too cold; if he pants, the water is too hot. Choose a location that has a flat surface, so the cat will feel secure that he can stand easily. Add a towel or rubber mat to the bath surface so the cat won’t slip, creating more panic. Start with just enough water to cover his feet. For the first week, just dunk his feet into the water and immediately pull him out and dry his feet. Then give him plenty of treats and special attention.
As with training any animal, patience and time are going to be needed. Just stick with it and be consistent and you’ll soon start seeing the benefits of your cat training efforts.