Feline fun: Advance your cat’s cues
Back in the summer, we shared some easy cues to teach your cat. Once you’ve mastered those cues and are looking for more of a challenge, try these more advanced moves with your feline friend. Teaching your cat cues can serve as a valuable enrichment and bonding experience! Learn more on our website, shelterhealthpro.com
One of the most impressive cat cues is “roll over.” Start by getting your cat’s attention and showing them the reward (meal, treat or toy). Holding your finger out like you’re pointing in front of you, draw a circle with the tip of your finger in the air continuously while saying “roll over.”
Your cat may only lay down at first. Make sure to reward them at this stage in the beginning. The next time, gently try to help them roll over and then reward them. Continue this until you are able to make the hand motion, say the cue and have them complete the action.
If your feline friend is a fan of toys, this game will be great fun for you both – and help them stay active!
When you notice your cat has more energy and is playing, move to a room or area of a room where there aren’t distractions or people or animals that could interfere. Pick one of your cat’s favourite toys to ensure interest. When you have the cats attention, toss the toy across the room. When they run to it, say “bring it back.”
Your cat might not bring it back at first, so you will need to say the cue a few times, go get the toy and reward them with praise and pets once you have the toy in your hand to associate the toy with a reward.
Throw the toy two to three more times in a row, so they see that when the toy is returned, more playing ensues. Over time, you will only have to retrieve the toy yourself one or two times and then eventually not at all. If your cat is a high energy feline, you will even start to get deliveries of toys to your feet when they’re up for a round of fetch.
Some cats will bring toys as a natural play response. If you have a cat that brings you toys already make sure to reward them when they drop the toy at your feet and then toss the toy for them to chase. This will encourage them to bring the toy back to you more consistently.
Now you’re ready to have some fun with your cat’s newfound knowledge. Be sure to regularly practice the cues with your cat to keep their abilities consistent. Learn more about the benefits of training your cat here.
You can help support the enrichment of animals waiting for homes in our care! Donate toys for shelter pets today.
Wish to thank everyone involved
I wish to thank everyone involved in the care and rescue of animals, especially volunteers.