Dogs are excellent learners, and most of them love being taught new tricks. Cats are very smart animals too, but they tend to resist directives—hence the old saying, “It’s like trying to herd cats.” Although cats are independent animals, it is still possible to teach them some basic commands. It just requires a great deal of patience and persistence.
Teach your cat to come to you on command.
This is one of the most useful commands to teach your cat. You can use it when you’re trying to get your kitty into the carrier for a vet appointment, for instance. The easiest way to teach your cat to come on command is to make a specific noise before you feed him or her. Click your tongue or make kissy noises with your lips before opening up the bag or can of food. When your cat gets accustomed to running toward you when you make the noise, you can start making the noise outside of feeding times. Do reward your cat with a treat when he or she comes to you.
Teach your cat to shake paws.
Just like teaching your cat to come to you on command, teaching him or her to shake paws requires treats. Get on the same level with your cat. Say “shake” while gently tapping your cat’s paw. If you have a pet training clicker, use it when your cat moves his or her paw. And don’t forget to offer a treat! Repeat this training session until your cat voluntarily offers his or her paw when you say “shake.” Eventually, you should be able to shake hands with your kitty without having to reward him or her with a treat every time.
Horizon Animal Hospital can help you keep your furry friend healthy with our customized wellness plans, available for cats and dogs. Pets are our passion, and we treat our patients like family. Call us at (480) 800-4559 to request an appointment with one of our caring veterinarians in Scottsdale, AZ.