How to Traffic Train Your Cat



Let your neighbors know about your cat.,
Mark the cat’s boundaries.,
Have a spray bottle handy.,
Set aside three days for initial training.,
Take your cat outside on a leash.,
Allow him to walk around.,
Avoid dragging your cat by the leash.,
Reward your cat for coming towards you or the house.,
Keep the first sessions short.,
Work up to letting the cat roam more freely.,
Watch closely.,
Encourage him to come inside on his own.,
Be persistent.,
Make sure that your cat is trained to stay in the yard.,
Encourage your cat to go out when traffic is light.,
Leave the front door open while he is out.,
Hide and wait for a car to come along.,
Spray the cat.,
Reward your cat.,
Be a role model.,
Repeat the procedure.,
Understand that not all cats are good candidates for outdoor training.,
Be aware of predatory animals.,
Find the optimal time to take your cat outdoors.,
Be patient.

If they don’t already know you have a cat, let them know that you do, that you are training him to go outside, and to stay within the boundaries of your yard.Explain that he is not supposed to leave the yard, and that if he comes into their yard, they can either shoo him back to your yard, or they can call you.Ask them to shoo your cat firmly, but without trying to frighten the cat. If they frighten him too much, he may run into the road, or somewhere other than your yard.;
, If you have a fence already, you can skip this step. If you do not, you should use something, such as small flags or large stones, to mark the boundaries of your yard., It is best if you get a children’s squirt gun that can shoot very far. This way, you can hide if you need to spray your cat. It is important that your cat does not see that the water is coming from you. If the does, he will wait until you are not around to do whatever they want to do.An exception to this is if you see that your cat needs to immediately be redirected because of danger (e.g. if you see he is headed towards the road, and there is an oncoming car). In dangerous situations, it is more important that you redirect him quickly, regardless of whether he knows you are doing it.You should also try to avoid spraying him in the face, unless it is to protect him from an immediate threat..

, In his first days outside, you will want to choose a quiet time of the day, right before your cat usually takes a nap., Call your cat by saying “Here!” (with his name) loud enough so that he can hear you. When he comes to you, praise him while you put on his harness and leash.In the beginning, you will carry your cat outdoors to demonstrate that you are in charge of the situation, but this will change later.You should set him down just a few feet outside the door so that he is facing the house.Pet him immediately, so that he gets used to being touched while outdoors., While holding on to his leash, allow him to sniff around the yard freely. Make sure that you have a firm grasp on the leash in case anything frightens him. You don’t want the leash to slip out of your hand if this happens.

Every few minutes, you need to pick him up and pet him while also saying his name. Once you have done this, set him down again facing the direction of your home.It is important that you do this several times before taking him back inside. If he learns that it means he has to go back inside when you pick him up, he will try to run and hide., Not only will this be unpleasant for your cat, it also increases the chance that he will escape from his harness. Cats are masters of escaping. If you pull his harness tight using the leash, it will be much easier for him to wriggle out of it, and once he figures this out, he will do it every time.If your cat jerks away from you because he is frightened, pick him up as soon as possible (step on the leash if necessary). If you don’t grab him, there is a good chance that he will get out of his harness.
If something does frighten him, pick him up and take him indoors immediately. Especially if he doesn’t calm down quickly. Give him a treat, and try again the next day.While it is generally not a good idea to take him inside as soon as you pick him up, a situation where he wants to run away warrants this. You want to discourage him from bolting out of the yard.

, Any time your cat walks towards you or the house, you should praise him. Keep a toy, such as a stick with a string and toy mouse attached to it, on the porch. Try to engage him in playing with the mouse close to the house., During the first three days, the goal is to keep him near the house, and to avoid situations where you have to tell your cat “no.” If he is on a leash, you will have more opportunity to guide him towards the home (without dragging him!).Start with session of 5-10 minutes.
You can use positive things such as toys and treats to keep him interested in staying near the house.
As soon as you need to bring him inside, pick him up, pet and praise him for a minute or two, then take him inside. Once you are inside, reward him with cuddling (if he enjoys it) and a treat. Tell him he did good.

, After three successful days, you can take him outside, and let his leash drag on the ground. Continue to reward him for staying close to the house, but also allow him to explore a bit.

The point here is to teach your cat that as long as he stays inside the boundaries, he gets to roam around, but once he crosses those boundaries, play time will be over.Just as in the first three days, you should continue to pick him up every few minutes, pet him, and praise him. The point here is to remind him that you aren’t necessarily a signal that he has to go back inside., Whenever your cat approaches the boundary of the yard, stay close to him. As soon as he steps on or over the boundary, say “no.” You should avoid using his name, and you should not yell it so loudly that it will frighten him.

Instead, say “No,” and get between him and the outside boundary. Gently shoo him back in the boundary by using hand motions, or by gently pushing him back into the yard.Never hit your cat. Hitting an animal only damages their trust in you.
Any time you see him approaching the boundary, you should do this. You can say “No” or “Uh-uh.” If he crosses the boundary anyway, go and put him back inside the boundary. If he crosses the boundary a third time, then you should take him inside.Remember though, that you should still reward him when he comes indoors. He needs to learn that going inside is a good thing.

, A good strategy is to plan his outdoor time right before his normal meal time so that he has something to look forward to. Otherwise, you can try luring him in with toys and/or treats.If he ignores you, and stays outside, then go over to him and pick him up. Walk around with him for a few seconds while petting him. Apologize, and say that you have to go inside now. Once inside, praise him, and give him a reward., Once he goes outside without his leash and harness, remain cautious. You should still keep a constant eye on him. If he steps on or over the boundary, give him a verbal warning immediately. If he violates that warning even once, take him back inside.At this point, you should also try to hide for a few seconds at a time, or at least stay out of his line of sight. The cat needs to understand that the rules apply whether you are there or not.
You can also hide with your water gun. If he steps on or over the boundary, spray him with the water. Again, do your best to avoid being seen.
Over the span of a few months, your cat should come to understand that the yard is where he is allowed to be, and that going out of the yard is unacceptable. Once you feel comfortable that he will not leave the yard, you can leave him alone, but do not forget to check on him—frequently at first, and then occasionally. You may also need to have reminder training sessions where you stay out with him the whole time, picking him up occasionally to keep him comfortable with being touched while outside.

, By now, your cat should understand that he is supposed the stay in the yard. Hopefully, this will be training enough; however, it is also important that your cat understand what he should be afraid of.

, This will depend on where you live, but you need to figure out when the traffic is lightest on your street, perhaps mid-day (while most people are at work) or late at night after most people have come home.Try to keep the times consistent so that your cat learns what time of day he can expect to go outside. It will help establish patterns that your cat can understand.

, Once your cat is used to going outside at a certain time each day, you should follow him. Be sure to leave the door open so he can easily get back inside., Since your cat knows that he should stay in the yard regardless of whether you are there, you should find a way to hide with a water gun. You will need to wait until a car comes along, preferably a bigger car so that your cat will be sure to notice it., Understand that spraying your cat with water can be very traumatic, so it should not be done often, and if at all possible, your cat should not see that you are the one spraying them.You should only spray that cat if he is near the boundary of the yard, and only if he doesn’t seem frightened of the car already.
The idea here is that you want your cat to associate the car with the something he dislikes.
Alternatively, you can also sit by the road. When you see a car coming, you should pretend that you are frightened, and gently shoo your cat towards the house. Try not to frighten him too much, as he may bolt if he is very frightened.

, If, after spraying or shooing him, he runs toward the house, praise him. Pet him gently, give him a treat, and tell him that he did a good job., Cats are very aware of the behavior of others around them, so it’s important that they sense that you are frightened of the oncoming car, and they will begin to understand that is something they should fear as well., You should go through this training each day for a few days. It is important to be consistent in your training. If you only do this one or two times, your cat may not learn the association between the startling noise and the car.Although your cat will learn to fear the cars using this method, it is likely that, over time, he will become more comfortable with the noise of the car. Thus, it might be a good idea to repeat this exercise every few months to remind him that cars are dangerous.Do not let your cat see you looking calm and relaxed while standing in the road. Your cat needs to see that for you, the road is also a scary place., While it may be true that many cats enjoy time outside, it may not always be possible to train them how to stay safe while outside. If you have a cat that is very skittish, and doesn’t enjoy being touched, you may not be able to train him outside safely.If you really wish to train a cat such as this to be outdoors, you will first need to spend significant time indoors with him in order to gain his trust. In the event that something goes awry outside, you will need your cat to trust completely that you will keep him safe. Otherwise, he will most likely run in whatever direction gets him away from whatever is frightening.

, If you live in an areas where wild animals also roam around, your cat will be in great danger. If this is the case where you live, it is probably best to keep your cat indoors, unless you are able to take him out for walks on a leash.Several wild animals can pose a big threat for cats that are outdoors. For example, coyotes, foxes, hawks, and snakes can easily kill your cat if they catch him. Other animals, such as raccoons and skunks pose a threat, particularly if they have been infected with rabies.

, You should not take your cat out at certain times of the day, for example, when wild animals are likely to be most active, when there are likely to be many cars on the street, or when you have recently applied pesticides or chemicals to the area outside your house.You should also not let your cat outdoors when he has been misbehaving. The outdoors should be seen as a reward for good behavior. If your cat has not been so good, then don’t reward him by taking him outside.
You should not take your cat out at twilight, or after dark, especially if you live in an area where there are wild animals. This time of the evening is when these animals tend to be most active, not to mention that it will be difficult for you to see your cat.
You should also avoid letting your cat out on holidays where fireworks are used to celebrate. For example, the Fourth of July, New Year’s Eve, and Cinco de Mayo. The fireworks may frighten, or even injure your cat., It is important that, before taking your cat outdoors, you give him adequate time to trust you. Cats are not particularly trusting animals, particularly if they have been abused by humans in the past. If you have recently adopted your cat from a shelter, he may be very timid.

Remember though, that having a cat who trusts you can be very rewarding. It may not be as easy to gain his trust as you hoped, but if you treat him with kindness and patience, he will come to trust you, little by little.
If your cat is very shy, you should keep him indoors for at least a few months, even up to a year. This will give him time to learn that this is his home, and that you are the one who keeps him safe.
Never, ever strike your cat. Hitting your cat will teach him that you won’t necessarily always be a safe place to go. It is very stressful for your cat to be physically punished, and can damage your relationship permanently.

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