December 22, 2009

Few Basic Principles in Training a Kitten

Cats are independent creatures and the notion of training them may seem odd to some cat owners. Nevertheless, kitten training is an important responsibility for cat owners as it will ensure that they don’t engage in inappropriate behaviour like scratching furniture. Generally speaking, training any animal follows a few basic principles and training a kitten is no different. By training at an early age you prevent bad habits from developing and since it’s much easier to teach good habits than undo bad habits it’s essential that you train your kitten.

One thing to remember with regards to training your kitten is that you want to give them a chance to acclimatize to their new surroundings first. During the first few days that your kitten is in your home, it is important not to overwhelm them with rules. Also, in the beginning it is good to keep your kitten isolated from other pets and animals. When animals first meet, anxiety is a common reaction and this can lead to aggressive behaviour. Still, it is also important to ensure that during kitten training you gradually expose your kitten to other pets so that they can build a familiar and friendly relationship from an early stage.

Furthermore, there are some materials that you must prepare for your kitten before you bring it home, namely a litter box and scratching post. Show your cat how to use these items and be sure to give them plenty of positive reinforcement when they demonstrate bad behaviour. While positive reinforcement is usually more effective than punishment, there are times when you need to motivate your cat to change their behaviour. Many pet owners find that investing in a spray bottle is an effective way to punish a kitten who engages in inappropriate behaviour. For example, if your kitten loves to scratch the furniture rather than the scratch post you can spray her with some water when she attacks the furniture but praise her when she goes for the scratch post. These two methods will produce positive results in almost every situation.

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Disclaimer: CritterCures is an educational resource, and all information herein is strictly for educational purposes. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, prevent, or cure diseases, nor is it meant to replace the (prescribed) treatment or recommendations of your veterinarian or healthcare provider. Always inform your veterinarian or healthcare provider of any products that your pet are taking, including herbal remedies and supplements.