Unlike dogs, cats don’t recognise you as the dominate one in the house. This is because they are not pack animals with a social structure. Instead, they have a mind all of their own and do whatever they want, so disciplining them can be a bit of a challenge. But it is not an impossible thing to do, though it does require patience.
A misbehaving cat may do things like jump on kitchen counters, scratch loved furniture, climb shelves and destroy house plants. The problem is that your cat does not see these things as being bad. Instead, they are playing, sharpening their claws and exploring. So you need to teach them that they are bad things and not to do them. Here are top tips to discipline your cat.
Find its motivator
This could be a treat that they love, a toy that they like to play with, a pat or even a cuddle. Figure out what works best and use it to discipline your cat by rewarding it when it stops misbehaving. You can also use it to entice your cat. For example, if it is running around or climbing, your cat may be bored. So if you lure it with its favourite toy than it will most likely stop and come to play with you instead. As well, you can tempt a cat by putting a treat somewhere that it needs to go to to get, which will mean jumping off the kitchen counter or wherever your cat may seem to be.
Use your voice
Say things like ‘Stop it’, ‘Leave it’ or ‘No!’ in a loud firm voice when necessary to stop your cat from misbehaving. They will get the picture and will be irritated by the sudden loud disturbance. You can also clap your hands together, which will also annoy your cat and make it stop what it is doing.
Things like spray bottles and double-sided tape are a great way to teach your cat discipline. Plus, they won’t see you as the punisher. Instead, the tool will be the punisher. Spray them with water to get them off of countertops or shelves, which is something that they will hate and will make them quickly learn to stop doing. They will associate doing these things with water and will stop. As well, if you put double-sided tape on cherished furniture it will make it undesirable for them to scratch. There are also cat motion detectors that you can buy that will blast air on them when they pass by, which is a great way to discipline your cat when you are not home.
No one likes to be isolated, including your cat. When your cat misbehaves you can discipline it by removing it from the situation. For example, you can lock it in the bedroom or in the bathroom. This will teach your cat not to repeat what he/she is doing. This works great if your cat likes to eat food from your plate or bites you. It is a simple way of telling it that this behaviour will not be tolerated.