Cat Training-The Sneaky Ways Your Cat Trains You - By: Kate Rieger
If you are a cat lover it probably doesn't come as a surprise your cat has trained you well over the years. In fact, you may find that you are your cat's servant. Actually, training between you and your cat is a two-way street. This two-way cat training occurs when you (or your cat) repeats a behavior that evokes a desired response.
Perhaps you are working at your computer and your cat walks across the table to land in your lap and looks lovingly at you. What can you do, you're defenseless? You have to stroke her body and scratch under her chin. She rewards you with much purring. Soon she's satisfied and climbs off you leaving a bit of fur behind in your lap.
That's the cat training and she's an expert. She knew that if she plopped into your chair and waited long enough you would respond with petting. You trained her too even when you remain stoic and don't respond in this manner every time. Intermittent rewards are a stronger reinforcement for cat training than are consistent reward patterns.
For example, your cat gets your attention in the morning when she wants you to get out of bed to feed her. Sure, it may be four in the morning, but she's certain you should be up by then. There she is purring in your ear or poking at your eyelid. You may ignore her for a few minutes, but soon you're out of bed and feeding her.
Right from the time they are kittens, cats learn quickly what behaviors are rewarded and they learn to repeat them. Not all cats train their humans the same way. In fact if you have multiple cats in your household you know each cat has her own way or 'working you.'
Our cats get out attention in a number of ways. When they do, we stop to pick them up for a smooch or pause to offer them a treat. The training between cats and humans is natural. We agree to be trained because the rewards are so satisfying. It's a give and take relationship, a bond between animal and human.
With cat training, it truly is a give and take relationship. We both give something and are rewarded with that emotional tug on our heart. Sometimes it does seem we are slave to our queens and toms. That purring with the half-closed eyes is completely irresistible. Would you have it any other way?
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