How to Target Train a Cat

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Target train your cat to move off surfaces.,
Lure your cat into a crate with a target.,
Use target training to get your cat comfortable with touch.,
Teach your cat to sit.

Target training is an excellent tool for stopping unwanted behaviours. For example, your cat may enjoy sitting on the kitchen counters while you are cooking. In order to stop this behaviour, place the target on the ground. Your cat will jump off the counter in order to touch the target.

You can use this to coax your cat off of any type of furniture.
Alternatively, you could use a target to get your cat to go to a certain space. For example, you may want them to sleep in their own bed or sit on their cat perch.

, Some cats will hide or try to avoid being placed in their carrier. Once your cat is target trained, you can simply place the target near the door of the carrier and your cat will voluntarily enter. This can make trips to the vet much easier and less stressful for both you and your cat.Give your cat a treat once it enters the carrier and touches the target.
You can also coax your cat out of its carrier using a target.

, You may find that your cat is afraid of human touch. This is particularly common among rescue cats. One way to help overcome this is through target training. Once your cat has become comfortable touching a target, replace the target with your hands. Alternatively, you could use your hands as the target right from the beginning.Eventually your cat will associate your touch with a positive reward in the form of a treat.
When using your hand as a target, always keep your hand in a predictable position, such as an open palm, closed fist, or extended fingers.

, Tricks are not only for dogs. Once your cat has mastered target training, you can begin to teach it tricks. For example, you can teach your cat to sit by holding the target in front of the cat’s face and then moving it upwards. Then say “sit.” Your cat should naturally sit as they look upwards at the target. Once sitting, reward the cat with a treat.

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