Yes, It’s Possible! How to Train a Cat to Take (Even Better) Care of Itself

You’ve heard that an old dog can learn new tricks. But did you know man’s best friend isn’t the only pet that can learn fun tricks? 

You can also train a cat to do a number of cool tricks. For example, you can train your cat to give you high fives and roll over, just like a dog.

But how do you train a cat? And what kind of tricks can a cat do?

That’s the subject of today’s blog post as we examine how to train a cat along with three fun tricks you can teach your furry feline now.

Teach Your Cat to Sit

Start training your cat with simple tricks to start. Perhaps the easiest trick for a cat to learn is to sit on command. It’s also a great trick to use as a building block for other tricks.

You’re going to need a treat to use as positive reinforcement. Hold her favorite food directly over her head, preferably a few inches above her ears. Slowly move the treat towards her tail and she will have no choice but to sit, perhaps just partially, in order to see the treat. Immediately say the word “sit” and reward her for her efforts.

Practice this trick and within a few days she should be sitting on command. Once she masters sitting, you can easily add a second trick by raising the treat higher in order to get her to stand.

Teach Your Cat to High-Five

Once your cat can sit on command, getting him to high-five you is quite simple. Again, hold the treat over his head, raising it until he must reach for it. When he extends his paw, high-five him, say “high five” enthusiastically and reward him immediately.

You can use similar techniques to teach him to shake your hand or even to wave goodbye.

If you have a cat and a dog, you can teach them at the same time. It’s a great way to improve the cat and dog relationship in your home.

Teach Your Cat to Roll Over

As you know, you can train a dog to roll over with the right tips. Most people have never seen a cat do tricks. So teaching your cat to roll over is the ultimate crowd pleaser.

To start, get your cat to lay down and relax. You may need to lay her down and pet her until she is completely comfortable.

As an incentive, use her favorite treat or a food she doesn’t get very often such as cooked chicken or tuna. Put the treat close enough to her nose that she can sniff it. Then, bring the treat to the other side of her body while saying the command “roll over.”

Ideally, she should roll over to follow the smell of the treat. It is likely this will take multiple attempts before she knows what you are asking her to do. It may even take a few days of repeated attempts. 

It’s important to take it slow and stay positive. Don’t get frustrated. Your cat is smart and she will figure it out in time.

Whenever she rolls over to your command, reward her immediately and shower her with praise. Be consistent in your praise and eventually she will turn over on command without the use of treats.

The Final Word on How to Train a Cat

If you want to know how to train a cat quickly, the key is to use positive reinforcements. Remember this: Cats, like dogs, respond well to praise and positive reinforcement. Conversely, negativity and criticism only lead to frustration for both of you.

Be patient and realize that training your cat requires time. Your cat wants to make you happy, but they aren’t always sure what you are asking. Your cat will learn any trick so long as you give it time and lots of love.

If you find this article helpful, I encourage you to check out our favorite cat toys, as researched by real cats!