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Breeze

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how can i keep my lovely but oh so annoying kitty off the tables and counters?

You mean that cute little kitty that rides on the back of the head rests? Not that little dear! She looks like she isa little precocious!

This is more of a behavior question, so I looked around a bit. I am NOT into punishment for cats because 1) they don't get it 2) they do what they want anyway and 3) it will just make them afraid of you.

I would simply pick her up when you catch her, and put her on the floor and say "no". Then go on with what you are doing. You might also explain that you don't want her up there anymore. They do understand us. Whether a cat chooses to comply or not is another story.

There are a couple things you can do. Don't leave food out. They smell food up there and want to inspect it to see if it might be something they would like. So if you can, keep your food put away while you are working through this with her.

And this is the LEAST cruel tip I could find. ( my cats don't jump on the counters - so I have not had this problem) Put some tape on the counter that is sticky on both sides. When she jumps up there, her feet will stick to the tape and she won't like that. She will get right down. A few times and this should be solved. I think this sounds like a logical thing to do, unless you have really huge counters.

For the most part, cats do what they want. So when you aren't home, she will try and get up there anyway. But you might try with asking her not to, and then try the tape. After awhile, she will stop doing it.

You might also give her a treat when you ask her to get down and she does without you forcing her to.

Hope this helps some.

Breeze

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how can i keep my lovely but oh so annoying kitty off the tables and counters?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Another thing that works well on cats but isn't actually cruel is to use a plant mister full of lukewarm water.

Set it on the midway point where it's not a jet of water and not really a cloud, and squirt near them when they get somewhere. You don't actually have to squirt the actual cat. Just near usually works.

They learn fairly quickly something they hate is involved in being on the table, and stop doing it.

Course if your cat likes water (I had one once that did.) it's not gonna work at all. ;)

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What kind of, I don't know what the word for it would be, vibes maybe? do you get with small animals like guinea pigs? I often wonder just how much thought/understanding is going on in my piggie's little head.

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Breeze,

Ok, this may be a bit long, but you'll need a picture of the situation...

I have a cat (we estimate his age to be 14 or 15 years old), who has terminal cancer (we have it removed surgically now and then, but it continues to come back and grow larger each time), and a chronic mouth virus (we give him monthly depro-medrol steriod shots to control the painful swelling so he can eat), he is very thin (less than half his former weight), has recently begun to lose mobility in his rear legs, seems to be losing his memory, and has occasional seizures. 

I am concerned as to the best course of action for him.  I have asked my vet about the 'proper' time to perhaps have him put to sleep, and the vet has taken a wait and see attitude for now, which I am fine with... but I am very concerned because I know that animals hate to show pain...  In the past, some of my pets have been stoic right up to the bitter end, and I don't want him (the cat) to suffer unnecessarily. 

Any advice on signs from him that he is ready to go?

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  I had origianlly thought it would be cool to answer questions about Animal Communication. But my first question, from Penny ( see below) I had to research, so how about we do both?

OH

i think i must have TOTALLY misread your first post.

i thought that you specifically did not want to do animal communication in this thread.  (like no "here is a picture of fluffy, how is she?") or did you mean you wanted to let people ask questions ABOUT communication but that you don't want to actually do communication in this thread???

penny the confused

(and thank's for the tips... she's actually getting better in that when we walk into the room she gets off the table (and then gets back on when we look away, of course))

and yes, she's a precocious, gets into things roudy little girl.  hubby jokes that we should race her but that we don't "want her around the kinds of cats on the racing circuit" 

we orig partially got her to help perk up my elderly sick kitty, and it's helped.  though i fear my older cat is taking a turn for the worse.  (stroke, cancer scare, kidney probs, and hyperthyroid which is fucking up her liver and heart, oh and arthritis.  she's medicated to the gills and we do the best we can for her, and she's not in pain.  (i HOPE) but if she ever hits another major health wall, i think... well, cats don't understand pain and don't need to be in it... ok rambling.  she's good for now.  go medicine (esp. adequan shots for arthritis, they're AWESOME.))

thank you breeze

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First:

  I have some errands to run and then will thoughtfully answer the questions above. Thank you!

And Penny:

i thought that you specifically did not want to do animal communication in this thread.  (like no "here is a picture of fluffy, how is she?") or did you mean you wanted to let people ask questions ABOUT communication but that you don't want to actually do communication in this thread???

You were right. I don't want to do consults here with specific animals. But I will answer questions from my perspective which I feel is unique. And I will be glad to answer how animal communication works. (huge question)  So you had it right.

It's just that the first question (yours) is not something I had ever come across ( oddly, because it is fairly common) so I did some research. Then I got the idea that maybe we could help each other. Why limit it to me?

I will happily answer the questions above when I return. And my main point to you was this: whatever you do in trying to get "Velcro Kitty" off the counter, it shouldn't be something that makes her frightened of you. That is why I suggested the tape. It won't have anything to do with you.

Hope that clears that up. I just want to avail myself for questions like Stella's and cattwomannc. These are areas I can be helpful. Your question is a good one and I think that maybe others have had luck with this. That is why I decided to open this up to "hey let's all talk about our problems and solutions."

Breeze

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It's just that the first question (yours) is not something I had ever come across ( oddly, because it is fairly common) so I did some research. Then I got the idea that maybe we could help each other. Why limit it to me?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Some people will set un-used mouse traps on the counter so that when the cat jumps up, they snap and scare the cat.  I'd be afraid that they'd hurt the cat. 

I've also heard where people will squeak a balloon and scare the cat with it so they associate a blown up balloon with the loud noise.  Then they put the balloons where they don't want the cat to be, ie:  the counters, scratching on the furniture, etc. 

There's a product called Sticky Paws that is sheets of two sided adhesive that you can stick on the problem surface.  I used it on the woodwork near my desk and they stopped scratching there but scratch elsewhere.  They have a scratching post that they also use.

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"Stella"

I often wonder just how much thought/understanding is going on in my piggie's little head.

Actually, quite a bit! Just because an animal is small, does not mean it isn't as smart as a larger animal.

I think of it this way: all animals have spirit. And spirit really has no size. When I am communicating with an animal, I am actually connecting with their spirit. Theirs with mine. I "see" what they see, I "hear" and sometimes "smell" what they do, and sometimes I even feel places in their body where they are uncomfortable.

Don't disregard your little guy as "just a little Guinea pig". Guinea pigs are very smart and have really big hearts. One of my teacher's has a few of them and has learned a lot from them. I'll bet she gives you a lot of love.

cattwomannc:

First let me say that you are very brave to have gone this far with your kitty. Many humans would have had the cat put down by now. Sounds like you are a true animal lover and will do anything for the kitty.

What you don't want to do is let the cat believe that you can't go on without him. This will only make him try to stay with you longer. I have seen many cases where the human has been so desperate to keep the animal, that they actually let it go on too long. Not good. But you don't sound like that kind of person.

You will hear me say this a lot here. Talk to him. Let him know that you understand his ailments and that he must be uncomfortable. Tell him that it's going to be sad when he is gone, that you love him, but that you want what is best for him. He will understand this.

Animals commit suicide all the time. One of my teacher's watched her dog run purposely out in front of a garbage truck to her horror. She later found out that he had an illness that he simply didn't want to deal with. So he left.

If your cat was ready, and he was really miserable, he would find a way to end it himself. Obviously he isn't ready yet.

The other thing you can do is sit with him quietly. Do this daily. There will come a day when you "know" it's time. He'll "tell you" that he is ready, and then you will have to make that trip to the vet. Believe me, you'll know.

We are kind of in the same boat. Our cat is 17. He has been my guide, my best friend, and a comfort to both my husband and me during times of MI. He is pretty healthy except that he has IBS. (yes cats get it too) It seems to come on when there is something up with my husband or me. I used to be able to get him "in remission" but my husband had cancer last summer and we haven't gotten Bart ( cat) healthy again although my husband is fine.

My point to Bart is that I don't want him to stay just to take care of us. We will miss him, but if he needs to go, I want him to feel free to do so. He's a stubborn guy - he is staying at this point!

Talk to your kitty. If he understands that you are worried, but will be ok if he has to "leave" then I think things will kind of take a natural course that will be easy on all of you.

Good luck. This is not easy and it sounds like you are doing a great job.

Breeze

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I have a kitty that I'm not very close to. Her name is Ophelia, and she was a shelter kitty. She was older when I adopted her, so she has a whole past life that I know nothing about.

In my home, kitties are gods. They are talked to and cuddled with and brushed and petted. No sort of violence has ever been visited upon any of them while in my care. (Except for the occasional bickering they do among themselves)

Ophelia is different from the others. She gets along with all of them... I've never seen another of my cats so much as look at her funny, and in fact, very frequently Mango and Luna will groom her and sleep with her. Ophelia doesn't like to be held or picked up, and when I'm walking towards her, she will run like I'm about to kick her in the head. This has diminished a little... if I slow down my pace, make eye contact with her, and talk soothingly to her as I walk, sometimes she won't bolt.

As far as attention goes... she does seem to enjoy the occasional petting, but I've always felt that the best approach with animals is to wait until they are comfortable. To be willing and to express that, but ultimately to wait until the animal is ready for more affection. I've had Ophelia for three and a half years now. Is there some way to assure her that she's safe and loved, or will she always be shy and nervous? Should I push the issue more and initiate the contact more often, or is waiting the best?

I don't want to put her in any situation where she feels afraid. I suspect she may have had a rough life before she came to me, and the issues from that life probably are lingering. I'm not lacking in the kitty cuddles department, and so if Ophelia is never comfortable with that, then it's okay. I just want her to know that she's safe and loved and nobody is ever going to hurt her.

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This is very interesting. A couple observations:

When training any companion animal, two things are vital:

1) The tone of your voice; and

2) Your attitude.

Boils down to this: Do what you say, and say what you mean. Animals respond to simple clear, honest statements. They don't respond to wishy-washiness, to hidden agendas, to your guilt, etc.

All done with love, just done clearly.

You might also give her a treat when you ask her to get down and she does without you forcing her to.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

This is tricky. Animals can very easily pick up on our cues and turn them around. So, in this situation, we want to watch for the animal who has learned that if they do something "wrong" then respond to the command we give them, they will get a treat.

In other words, they've learned to elicit our response. "I do this, then Mom does that, then I do this and get a treat." For animals, this can all be seen as the same behavior, a seemless pattern. So, we need to watch for this, and if we see it do something different to break the pattern. Otherwise, they are training us.

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SerraGeorge:

I saw an episode of "Barking Mad" in which they worked with a woman who had a cat very much like Ophelia. They did get excellent results, but unfortunately, it'll take a lot for me to mentally reconstruct exactly "how" they did this.

I'll try to remember, but you may have better success by just watching the re-runs of "Barking Mad" on Animal Planet. In case you don't know, this was a BBC series done in the late 1990s. It only ran two seasons, so there aren't a lot of episodes to watch till you'll find the one I'm talking about. In each episode, there are two problem situations with animals and their owners, and it's interesting to see how they work them out. They have a team of behaviorists, trainers, and vets on call, and each situation will have the input of the appropriate expert.

Anyway, here's where you can find the schedule: http://animal.discovery.com/tvlistings/ser...d=0&channel=APL. I looked at the details of the last 3 of 4 episodes listed (got an error on the 1st one, but that episode was yesterday anyway). From what I can tell, doesn't look like any of these are the episode in question. 

All of them are worth watching. A lot of good info and interesting situations.

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revlow:

Boils down to this: Do what you say, and say what you mean. Animals respond to simple clear, honest statements. They don't respond to wishy-washiness, to hidden agendas, to your guilt, etc.

Although this is true to a certain extent, you are not giving animals the respect and acknowledging that they can understand what you are saying. In many cases, the animal is smarter than the human.

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I've got some behavioral observations I'm curious about if I may ask for comments Ms. Breeze?

I have four cats and I'm sure that their hierarchy works like this:

Cleo

Boomba

Speck

Casey

We've had Cleo the longest. She was a hellraiser kitten that would scale a brick wall in our first apartment. She'd also climb people, whether you were wearing shorts or jeans, did not matter. She attacked you while you slepts and was otherwise a terror. She had a stuffed animal chicken, about twice her size that she carried around everywhere she went.

Then we moved and it was like a mood pill. She became passive and loving. She chose me as her person and everyday when I got home from school or work she'd jump in my lap and fall asleep purring. What happened?

So we adopted Boomba (a kitten) and Casey (a one-year old) next. Cleo took Boomba under her care. She'd bathe him until he stumbled away soaking wet. Even today with Cleo as a 5 year-old and Boomba as a 3 year-old they will still sit together and sleep, or Cleo will bathe him.

We adopted Speck later when he was four years old. He's the same age as Cleo. He will come up to Cleo and lie down and pat his paws at her. She will either lick his head a few times or just pounce on him until he runs away.

All three cats enjoy chasing Casey, who is at the bottom of the totem pole. She was a nervous wreck at the shelter and my wife took pity on her and brought her home. She has become much more social and does pretty well. She's one of those dainty cats that can jump on tables or counters and not make a sound. My dad calls her a ninja (all the other cats make thuds or knock over things).

Just some behavioral observations, any thoughts?

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