Many cat parents struggle with this common problem. Old suggestions like spraying cats with water don’t work. And, to make matters worse, these punishment-based techniques make cats scared, anxious and stressed.
So, how do we get our cats to stay off the counter?
First, let’s look at why they are up there in the first place.
Cats need to climb and perch. Cats are predators, but they are also prey. They are instinctively driven to find the highest place in their environment to climb and perch so that they can survey the environment. This makes them feel safe.
Once we humans understand this, we can start to look at the problem differently.
What is the highest place in your kitchen that your cat has access to? I am betting it’s your counter. Now you understand why your cat wants to be up there, right? It makes them feel safe.
So, instead of scaring your cat and punishing him in ways he doesn’t understand, you can give him an even better place in your kitchen to feel safe.
Find a climbing and perching kitchen solution for your cat. This can be a cat tree, bookshelves or even a beautiful climbing wall.
Once you install your solution, your cat might take some time to get used to the new and improved perching place. Don’t get frustrated.
Try putting your cat’s food and treats up on the perch to encourage exploration. Every time your cat jumps on your counter, gently and kindly pick him up and place him on the new perch.
Soon enough, your cat will prefer their cozy option to your counters.
That’s how you make a Fear Free Happy Home for your cat!