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23 September 2008 @ 12:13 pm
on the subject of cats  
I'm always amazed when I say "they're not allowed up there" and people respond, "you can train them to do that?!"
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David Policardpolicar on September 23rd, 2008 04:32 pm (UTC)
(nods) The degree to which "untrainable" is part of the American conception of cats frequently amazes me, too. Further: this seems to be part of the appeal of cats to some owners, tied into the whole "independent" mystique, which I often find appalling.
A Sage With a Slight Flaw in Her Charactereccentrific on September 25th, 2008 09:19 pm (UTC)
The degree to which cats are considered independent often leads to emotionally neglected cats I think. Cats are a favorite pets of college students, many of whom seem to think the cats will do just fine being left alone in a tiny dorm room all day.
ξενική μὲν, χρησίμη δὲtla on September 23rd, 2008 05:05 pm (UTC)
Yes, and then it annoys me when people don't follow my enforcement rules on my own cat, and use the alleged un-trainability of cats as an excuse.
(Anonymous) on September 23rd, 2008 08:09 pm (UTC)
I think training kitties gets a lot easier if you're home all day to stop them when they're naughty. I've had no success at all training my kitties not to tear up the wallpaper in the bedroom because I'm not present and conscious often enough to deter them.
mathhobbitmathhobbit on September 23rd, 2008 08:10 pm (UTC)
I think training kitties gets a lot easier if you're home all day to stop them when they're naughty. I've had no success at all training my kitties not to tear up the wallpaper in the bedroom because I'm not present and conscious often enough to deter them.
The Water Seeker: Keiun perchplymouth on September 23rd, 2008 09:19 pm (UTC)
yeah, that's about what I was gonna say - generally cats learn "don't go there WHEN THE HUMAN IS AROUND". When I was a kid we trained our cat not to sit on the kitchen table. When we were around he almost never went there. But dozens of times we would come home just in time to see him jumping off the table with a guilty look on his face...
Deneb: babyalphacygni on September 24th, 2008 01:24 am (UTC)
To get past the "only when the human is around problem", there are several pieces of technology to throw at the problem. We bought this is device which is a motion detector hooked up to a can of propellant, which "hisses" when the cats get on the kitchen counter. It happens whether the humans are there or not, so the kitchen counter is blamed, and the humans remain source of all love. :)
pauldf on September 24th, 2008 03:41 am (UTC)
Heh. Yeah, there's definitely a spectrum of beliefs. A friend of mine (and her not-quite-year-old kitten) stayed at my place for a couple of months, though she was often elsewhere. I was still recovering from surgery, and had decided that my bedroom would therefore stay off limits to said kitten. This took a fair bit of vigilance and persistence on my end; I might have relented if I didn't honestly think it was somewhat important for my recovery to have a cat-free zone.

I knew I had one when the aforementioned friend watched me wander into my bedroom and her kitten decided to not follow me, without me having to dissuade her kitten at all (on that particular occasion). She was nearly speechless, particularly after her unsuccessful attempts to keep her kitten out of her laundry room during the prior year.
Jacob: tankkvarko on September 24th, 2008 06:42 am (UTC)
My parents say that their cat "thinks it's a dog", because they have it trained so well. He paws on the door when he wants to be let in and sits by the door when he wants to be let out, he doesn't get on tables or counters and doesn't get on the sofa unless told he can get up, when food is served he is told "sit" and does not go for the food until told that he can (though lately he's been not so good on this point), and he does not go up stairs to the second level at all. On the rare occasion that my parents forget to let him out at night, he will sit at the bottom of the stairs and mew upwards (towards the bedrooms) to let them know that he needs out -- he doesn't go up the stairs.