My adult cat has a lot of annoying quirks that I can't seem to get under control. We rescued him from the Humane Society when he was 1 1/2 years old. He is now just over 3 years old. He does anything possible to annoy us to get us up (before the alarm goes off in the morning). He scratches his paws on the dresser drawers, and paws at the mirrored closet doors and makes such a racket! If there is any small items sitting on top of the dresser, he will push them around to make noise and eventually end up on the ground. Any paper laying around, he will start tearing it up.
He also sits on top of our dining table and jumps up at our chrome metal chandelier to make it swing. He really likes reflections and shadows, which is why he does this. I am afraid it's going to come down on him one day.
My other much younger cat is quite simply an angel. If he does get into mischief, just one call of his name loudly, he stops.
I have tried everything to make the other one stop! Spraying him with a water bottle (which he ended up enjoying), giving him a time-out in his cat kennel, yelling his name or "NO"....Nothing is working!
I have been quite successful at training both my cats to "sit" on command with a treat, they enjoy getting their weekly manicure/pedicure (nail trim), and they are super friendly with guests and even other dogs and cats.
Are there any amazing cat trainers out there that have any ideas of what else we can do?!
Well, my amazing cat training technique is usually to adjust to my cats!
Seriously, no two cats are the same, just like no two people are the same. They do settle down quite a bit as they get older, but otherwise there isn't really much you can do to change a cats personality without breaking its spirit eventually.
And all your cats are angels, even the mischievous one! He's not doing anything to be bad or disobedient, he's just a cat. He doesn't think about it the same way as you do and he never will. Try to think of his playfulness as a good sign, of a happy and healthy cat!!
I certainly wouldn't move on to more drastic disciplinary methods. Cats don't respond well to discipline, even water spraying is more than I usually recommend, unless you have a really serious problem that could be a threat to the cats health.
Everything you've described is something my cats do too, to varying degrees! It's just cats, doing cat stuff! I've never even heard of cats sitting on command, that's very unusual!!
I have five cats and I can imagine the reaction if I tried to get them to sit when they didn't want to!! And if I withheld the treat, they'd gang up on me...!
I'd prescribe a sense of humor, gentleness and patience. As well as cat proofing the house if there is really anything dangerous, like the chandelier, that could be an issue.
Also, just a side note, but be careful about the claw clipping, even by a professional. It is very easy for a claw to be crushed by clippers that aren't quite sharp enough (and most clippers aren't sharp enough to cut without squashing at least a little). You won't even see it, but it can let bacteria in and cause a really nasty infection. You can do it a thousand times without incident and then, on the thousand-and-first time, you get an awful surprise. I've been through it, one of my cats is missing a toe from a foot infection.
Anyway, I'm sorry there isn't a magic answer to your issue! Just remember, he's already three, so pretty soon he'll probably calm down a bit, more and more every year :)
And, if he isn't neutered, get him to a vet right away. It'll make him calmer and it's better for everyone.
The morning behavior is probably due to hunger and I think every cat owner experiences it. Similarily to having kids, having pets changes our lives more than many of us are aware going in to it.
Other than in the morning, maybe your cat is just bored. Do you play with him often and take him out on supervised walks? My cat has the same behaviors as your cat, but if I set aside time to play with her and take her outside she behaves better and naps more often. Good luck. You are very lucky to have two sweet babies.
Thanks for your comments! I have professional clippers from the vets office, that I sharpen about twice a year with a regular knife sharpener and disinfect the clippers before each use. I have owned cats my whole life, so I know the ins and outs of claw trimming. I will still head your advice to watch out for any squashing.
He is neutered, absolutely.
He actually has come a long way with his behaviours since we first brang him home from the shelter. He has just had these few things that he's never stopped doing (and always has done).
I play with him all evening while the TV is on or when I am exercising at home (he loves to get in there wondering why I am laying on the floor!).
My cats (that's right, irritating habits, multiplied - they egg each other on!) wake me up for their breakfast and then, half the time, they just stare at it or take two bites.
I think they just get tired of me sleeping and, as a result, paying no attention to them!! So they wake me up as soon as they feel like they reasonably can expect me not to go back to bed! And they want breakfast because, well, it's time for it.
My least favorite cat-alarm-clock method is when they knock things off of shelves, just to get my attention. It's kind of like a version of the Chinese Water Torture!!
I was TOTALLY exasperated with my little "angel", LOL Savas, whom we named BadBabyCat. She is great during the day, no problems whatsoever. She is a VERY active cat, and like Savas said, we were choosing to view this as a tribute to her being very healthy. She likes to play CONSTANTLY, and likes us to play WITH her. We have inumerable balls for her (spongy balls are the best b/c she can fetch them), toy mice, toy "wombats", toy everythings and shoelaces, plastic milk jug rings, you name it. We throw the balls for her, we wrestle with her (she loves it), we play with her all the time, but at night, she is SO bad (ahem, healthy). She jumps onto the furniture and proceeds to claw away at it, all the while, looking directly AT us. She gets chased off, only to return as soon as your a$$ is back in your seat. She bites decorative things that she COMPLETELY ignores in the daytime, she spills my nightly hot beverages on me by running over to them and KNOCKING them onto me, she is just insane with nighttime antics. If you try to sleep, she jumps on your body, HARD, or touches your face with her paw(claws retracted thankfully). She "talks" all the time, day or night, and of course the daytime talkativeness is welcome. I concluded that she must be bored, since if I'm on here, she jumps up onto my computer table and peers over the laptop with her face and paws....I put everything down and attempt to play with her. Eventually she walks away. When I go back to my stuff, she's right back at her antics. She is NOT a lap cat, but I have attempted to catch her and pet her, nothing worked. FINALLY, my hubby brought home a crate/cage. At first, she was havin' none of it. I put a bed in there for her btw. Now, once I catch her, and believe me, it's NO easy task, I put her down on the floor in front of it, and she walks right in. I put a cover/tablecloth over the whole thing (well, the back is open) and I don't hear a peep outta her all night long. In the morning, I pull up the cover, and she's curled up nicely and I open the door....she walks out on her own....it has brought me SUCH peace I can't tell ya!!!!! Thank the lord for crates!!!!!!!
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