Training my kitten was probably the most difficult challenge I had to face in my entire life and not only was I inexperienced about it, but I also lacked the patience to do this. Generally speaking, cats are harder to train than dogs and that’s because they are a lot more independent. However, that didn’t stop me from doing everything I could in order to train my beloved kitten which I love with all my heart and soul. With lots of patience and the proper techniques that I’m soon going to talk about, I’m more than confident that you’ll be able to train your kitten as well.
1.The Kitten’s Mother Should Be Left To Socialize For A Minimum Of 2 Months
In my own experience and after reading many kitten training guides, I’ve found out that you need to let your kitten socialize with her mother for a minimum of 8 weeks. During this time, it’s the mother who’s going to do the bulk of the training which we associate with having a well behaved and good house cat. Please remember that:
- It’ll be about a month before your kitten starts weaning and by 2 months she should be able to eat solid foods.
- If you plan on weaning the kitten yourself, then it’s vital that you wait at least 2 months before separating the kitten from the mother. Believe it or not, the mother will train the kitten to use the litter box, eat properly and also know its strength.
2. Don’t Buy Kittens Who’ve Been Weaned Earlier Than Recommended
I have a friend who bought a few kittens that were weaned too early and I can’t begin to tell you how challenging it was for her to train them. Not only were they a lot more aggressive than my kitten, but she had to spend twice the time I did to train her kittens to the same level as mine.
3. Don’t Stop Socializing Your Kitten
I don’t think anyone would contradict me when I’ll say that the best kittens are those that have socialized from a younger age. I recommend that the kitten is handled by a wide range of people of all physical appearances and ages so that she gets used to people. Make sure the handling takes place twice a day, every day for a minimum of five to ten minutes. However, the more time someone can spend with your kitten, the better.
4. Socializing Your Kitten Takes Time
It did take me a while until I got accustomed to my kitten and even though I wanted to train her as fast as possible, this wasn’t something that I could control. I soon found out that you cannot force a kitten to do anything, so your best choice here is to provide her positive rewards and be patient. For instance, you could watch TV while lying on the floor and keep a few treats in your hand. When she comes to check what you have in your hand, you could drop a treat on the floor to reward her boldness. By doing so, you can bet that in the future she’ll link people to tasty snacks.
5. Positive Reinforcement Is A Good Idea
When your kitten doesn’t something that you want her to do, you should try and reward her with a treat, since this way you’ll let her know that she has done something you like and more important, she is going to associate that specific behavior with a delicious treat. However, if your kitten doesn’t something that you don’t like her to do, then it’s best to ignore here. By doing so, she’ll soon abandon that behavior.
6. Don’t Punish The Kitten
Unfortunately, I found out the hard way that punishing my kitten is not going to get me anywhere. In fact, it made it a lot more difficult to train her, so that is why I renounced punishing her completely. So when I saw my cat peeing on the bedroom carpet for the first time, I was angry and started yelling at her and I also pushed her. What I didn’t know is that she associated the punishment to me rather than with urinating on the carpet. In fact, I have friends that have done the same thing and while their cat didn’t urinate in the same spot, it did find other places around the house to pass water.
7. Disapproving Of Your Kitten’s Behavior Is Simpler Than You Think
There were many instances when my kitten did something that I didn’t want her to do and while I did use a few tricks to let her know that, they paled in comparison to me making the sounds of the mother cat when she like the kitten’s behavior. The sound is like a clicking sound that the mother cat makes at the back of her throat and it’s surprisingly easy to replicate. Just try to click your tongue against the roof or your mouth when the kitten does something she shouldn’t do and you’ll be surprised to see how effective this method actually is.
Well, this is my short and hopefully useful guide to training your kitten to make sure she grows up to be a playful, friendly and most of all, well trained cat. Let me know if you have any questions and I’ll be more than happy to answer them!