It has been a few months since I shared my first cat-training video. The two of us have done a lot of work since then and I am proud to finally present the second instalment in my kitty wrangling series.
When I thought about my early approach, I realized I was treating The Cat too much like a dog. I was trying to rev him up, get him excited to work with me, but that was the exact opposite of what I should be doing. After doing some reading, I had a true lightbulb moment. I talked about it here . Basically, I figured out that cats are most definitely not dogs.
It still blows my mind a little.
When I started to behave around The Cat more appropriately – like he was a cat – things between us went much smoother. In a way, I try to approach him similar to how I would approach a fearful dog: I wait for him to come to me, I hold the treat out and look away, I keep sessions super-short, and I end things with him wanting more. So far, we have been pretty successful. Once I got him to start taking food directly from my hand, we were gold.
But I will let the video speak for itself.
I am not entirely sure what my goal is for him. Initially, I just wanted to teach him to sit on cue. Now that we have that, I feel like we could do anything. Maybe even try walking on a leash? After struggling to get a decent photo of him last night, I think I am going to work on “stay” next. It’s one of the things I take for granted with Shiva and makes life so much easier.
Our relationship has steadily improved since I started this mini-project. In that sense, perhaps it doesn’t matter how far we go. I love that he now seeks me out every evening when he wants his treats. He sees me as more than just that annoying other person who tries to pet him too much. I will never be his favourite – that position will forever be held by my PH. However, I have hope I will eventually be held in higher estimation than the fish.
Have you ever had luck training a species other than a dog?