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Kennel Training Cats

Let's see…would you prefer to sleep on a comfortable mattress with warm bedding in a private room, or to sleep on a cot with a sheet in a group shelter?  Cats are a lot like us.  They appreciate all the comforts of home and enjoy being close to their families.

However, cats unlike us, often prefer a small, cozy area over a king size bed. Why is that?  In nature, cats feel safer hidden from view where they can escape predators and maintain a warm body temperature. For these reasons, cats, like dogs, adapt well to contented kennel training.

When you begin introducing the kennel to a cat, make sure everything wonderful happens in the kennel and nothing interesting happens outside of the kennel.

Until the cat enters the crate readily, feed every meal inside the kennel.

Kennel Training Tips

First, do NOT begin by putting the cat in the kennel and locking the door.  Do NOT  begin to close the door until the cat loves being in the kennel.  And, even then, begin by closing the door for a few minutes at a time while giving lavish praise.   

Second, all treats and toys live in the kennel. For a few weeks, only praise and fuss over your cat when he/she is in the kennel. Keep the most comfortable, clean bedding inside of the kennel.

Third, when you DO begin to close the kennel door, start for a few minutes at a time when the cat is either eating a meal inside the kennel, or sleeping (if overnight, preferably in your bedroom).

Help your cat associate the kennel with good experiences such as  treats, favorite toys, praise, petting, and the most comfy bedding.

Why provide your cat a kennel?

If you have small children, a kennel gives your cat a safe refuge.  Cats love "caves" as a safe place for retreat. That's why they often sleep in closets. 

If you have other pets, kennels are a great way to introduce pets to each other.  If you have guests with small children and do not want your cat underfoot, you may rest assured if your cat is happy and content resting in an indoor kennel.  If possible, place the kennel above ground on a dresser or table. Cats also like to rest in high places.

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