If you are a cat owner, then you will be familiar with the wants and needs of a cat to explore the outdoors, however daunting this may seem. You will also be familiar with the want to give them whatever is best for them, even if this is the scary outdoors. In order to do this, your cat needs to be house trained and conditioned to find their way back home for food and to sleep. This article explores the best ways to build these characteristics within your cat and to ignite in them the desire to return to their home and to see your home as their own.
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Before you let your cat out into the big wide world, make sure that your pet is micro chipped. By micro chipping your cat, you are branding them with your address. If anything horrible were to happen to your cat, such as an accident or loss, your address will show up whenever the cat is taken to a vet. A collar with your address on it is also a great way to make sure your cat does not stray very far. This will help in those times when your cat may accidentally stroll into the yard of a neighbour, or look for food in another cats bowl. Make sure the collar is not too tight on the neck of you cat and also that it is not loose enough to get caught on something. Also, it is important to make sure that your cat is de-sexed before letting them outside. This will make sure that they are not impregnated or do not impregnate another cat.
A great way to introduce your cat to the outside world is to head outside with them. Take them out into your garden for controlled 15-20 minute bursts. During this time, they will be inquisitive but may also be very willing to stay close to your side. Choose a time just before they will usually take a nap, so they are more inclined to wander back inside to sleep. Encourage them little by little and stay out for longer each time and reward them for their good behaviour, such as coming back to your recall. If your cat gets out without your permission, get them back inside as soon as you possibly can. If they get away with it once, they will keep on trying to escape. If you do not have a fence, establish a safe property line and when your cat gets close to approaching it, either loudly say “no” or pick them up, establishing that you are still in control.
The recall you establish with your cat is the most important element of house training. Early in your cat’s life, work out what recall trigger that works best for their personality. This could either be your voice, a whistle or shaking their food in its container. Whatever works best, use it to your advantage. Being able to simply call out, or shake your cat biscuits and have your pet return is the most effective and simplest way to house train your cat. Make sure that once you have recalled the cat door or your house door is open, making the return welcoming and open and definitely always reward your cat upon return.
Teach your cat how to use a cat flap and be comfortable with it. The cat flap can be daunting to cats who have never used one before. Make sure you thoroughly teach a cat how to use it before expecting them to be comfortable going to and fro the house from it. Gently show them how they will move through it and help them with it a few times until they get the hang of it. This is a very important aspect of house training a cat, as it is more then likely the access point to the home for your cat and you do not want this to scare them off retuning home. Make the cat door the only avenue your cat has for leaving the house, but let them return through any door or window.
It is a good idea to shut off your cat flap at night, to secure your cat indoors after dark. Cat’s can tend to get up to no good once the sun has gone down and many cat fights have gone down during the dead of night. For the safety of your cat, keep them indoors at night.
Make sure that your cat is happy and stress free when it is in your home. To do so, make sure there are no aspects of your home that put your cat on high alert or scare your cat. If your cat is frightful at home, they may wish to flee and when given the chance, they may very well run away. Also, make sure they always have access to fresh food and water. Cat’s are highly intelligent creatures and understand where their food and water source comes from. Use this fact as a means to house train your pet, as all animals will end up seeking an easy food source.