Teaching your cat not to be a predator – Part 8

It was the last straw. “I’m teaching him a lesson,” Philip declared as I entered his room. Between gritted teeth, my normally quiet and gentle 10 year old raged, “I’m realy mad at Chester, Mom.”

Poor Chester. He was scrunched in the terrarium that usually held lizzards or snakes and he looked so dejected. Philip had tried to be patient with Chester who could not resist going into Philip’s room because he was so facinated by the live creatures who dwelt there. In an effort to deter the Siamese from venturing into the forbidden bedroom, we had previously sprayed a line of cat repellant on the carpet in the doorway but Chester just hopped over it.

Since it didn’t seem that we would be able to teach our cat to stay away from Philip’s room, I tried to teach Philip a lesson about cats: It is impossible to train a cat not to chase things, especially if they wiggle and move. It’s part of what makes him a cat and so quirky and fun to live with. Our relationship with a cat, any cat, has to be on his terms. He makes the rules and he chooses exactly what he’ll do and when he will do it. It’s not that he is stupid-he is highly intelligent. It’s just the way he is. Changing him is impossible, so if you don’t want him in your room, keep the door shut, PERIOD.

If what you want is a pet you can train to do tricks, one who will adore you unconditionally no matter what you do, don’t ever get a cat. Get a dog.

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