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Dinner Plates, Beware!

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
My kitten has just gotten to the age where he has discovered that he can jump, and quite high at that. I've had cats in the past that I was able to discourage from jumping on counters/tables by a loud hiss and with a squirt of water. It worked wonders and they were amazingly well behaved (even as youngsters)

The little hell-cat I have now... Well, you see... I've never CAUGHT him on the counter tops or on the kitchen table, but I know for a fact he is up there when ever I'm not watching. He'll leap up when I'm in another room doing laundry or watching a few moments of TV. I've noticed some little hairs of his here and there, so I know he is doing it. I can just never catch him. I can't leave food out on the counter or he tries to eat it... I have seen small nibble marks left in fruit or really anything else thats been edible on the counter.

Last night I had just finished doing dishes and they were sitting in the drying wrack on the counter, I had JUST stepped away to watch Greys Anatomy when I heard a massive crash and ran into the kitchen. Sure enough, the kitten had jumped INTO the pile of clean dishes and knocked them all onto the floor. What a mess that was. Ugh.

I don't know what to do, I'm at my wits end. I don't want to lock him up when I'm out or when I can't be watching him. But I also want to be able to leave butter out on the counter without him licking it all up because hes gotten on to the counter. But like I said, I've never caught him up there so I haven't been able to tell him no or administer any sort of discipline.

Help!
post #2 of 20
Can you just clean the countertop/table before you use it and then you dont have to worry about catching anyone and everyone can be relaxed?
post #3 of 20
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pami View Post
Can you just clean the countertop/table before you use it and then you dont have to worry about catching anyone and everyone can be relaxed?

Its not the cleaning that I have an issue with, its the fact that he jumps on the counter and I can't even leave apples out... He'll bite into them! He'll lick up butter if I leave it on the counter. I wouldn't mind him being up there if he wasn't just going to knock things over/want to eat things that aren't meant for kitty.
post #4 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by silverwinged View Post
I have seen small nibble marks left in fruit or really anything else thats been edible on the counter.
<snip>
But I also want to be able to leave butter out on the counter without him licking it all up because hes gotten on to the counter. Help!
Well....your first mistake is leaving edible stuff on the counter and your second mistake is thinking your cat won't get up there and eat it. I have learned not to leave food on the counter. My cats have me well-trained. Ok, not completely; sometimes I still forget stuff on the counter - like bread - with the obvious results. To a cat, anything on the counter is fair game.
post #5 of 20
Well hopefully someone will give you some helpful advice. I personally just put away anything they can possibly get into because I know they will do it when Im asleep or away anyway. Good luck in finding a solution.
post #6 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Pami View Post
Well hopefully someone will give you some helpful advice. I personally just put away anything they can possibly get into because I know they will do it when Im asleep or away anyway. Good luck in finding a solution.
YEP, when you have a cat, you are CO-DEPENDENT! You must adapt your behavior to their mis-behavior. LOL.

I learned long ago to put stuff my Mom always used to leave out, away.

Then I got an IBD cat ... and had to teach the kids to climb under their chairs and pick ALL the crumbs up, after they ate.

I had to figure out where to cool my freshly-baked bread, so it would not get "fanged."

I had to do all my dishes right away so he would not lick them out, even invisible residue, and get sick.

We do what we gotta ...
post #7 of 20
I don't believe cats belong on the counter. They have the run of most of the rest of the house, and it's perfectly okay to have boundaries about where they can and can't go.

You can train them to avoid the counters. With kittens it's going to be a long process, because they're much more energetic and so fast and such good jumpers. But it's also a good time to teach them. Usually, I would suggest putting the cat on the floor every single time (over and over and over) and saying "No" loudly and calmly each time.

But since you can't catch your cat at it, you'll have to use other strategies. If I were you, I'd go for the double-stick tape on the counters. You can buy this at the pet store, or use the regular kind (so long as it's not too adhesive). Cats hate the feel of this on their feet. Put it along the edges of the counters, and possibly with some crisscrossing the middle areas also.

Other people like to use plastic carpet runners, placed upside down on the counters so that the pointy parts are facing upward. Cats don't like to walk on these either.

It could take half a year of this before the cat learns that that's not a place he wants to go, but after that he'll be good, with only the occasional reinforcement of the lesson from you.
post #8 of 20
Good luck training them not to go on counters and tables. I'd be willing to lay bets that even those of you who "think" you have your cats trained not to get up on these things are deceiving yourselves. When you are out those cats are going whereever they want.
post #9 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by emmylou View Post
I don't believe cats belong on the counter. They have the run of most of the rest of the house, and it's perfectly okay to have boundaries about where they can and can't go.
I don't believe cats belong on the counter either, or on the table or on top of the entertainment center or on the fireplace mantel........ Believe me, I wish I could keep my cats off of the counter and table especially but it's a lost cause so rather than getting upset about it I just live with it and try to change some of my own bad habits like leaving food out. Cats like being up on elevated places and if there's food there, all the better! I chase the cats off when I catch them there but I know darn well that they're up there again when I'm not in the room. I tried the tape thing, I've tried aluminum foil..... I would rather my cats get onto surfaces where I don't want them than to walk into my kitchen and or dining room to see tape or foil all over the place. That's just me of course, other's opinions will differ.
post #10 of 20
I'm also a firm believer in no cats on the counters or kitchen table for that matter. My first cat, Callie, never even thought about jumping on the kitchen counters or table, but my little Hannah LOVES to jump on the counters and the table. We've had her for 2 years now and she's almost got the hang of not being on the counters.

I used to line the counters with pitchers and larger plastic containers of various sizes. This usually discouraged her from jumping because she couldn't figure out how to jump over them. If she tried, she'd run into one of them and knock it off. The clatter alone scared the tar out of her and taught her a lesson, for a little while anyway. I used plastic containers so that if they fell off the counter, they'd not break.

We tried the double sided tape thing and aluminum foil thing. Didn't deter her determined little self at all!! She's a feisty and persistent little thing! I was on the verge of trying a carpet runner cut to fit my counter when she finally learned that she didn't belong up there. The plastic carpet runners have little knobby things on the bottom that if you turn it upside down on your counter make it uncomfortable for the kitty to stand on. The theory is that they'll learn the counter is not a comfy place for them. You might try that. They're easy to handle and cut to fit whatever size you need.

Lastly, there's a thing called SSSCAT MOTION DETECTOR SCAT CAT or DOG REPELLANT that might work if you're really desperate.

http://cgi.ebay.com/SSSCAT-MOTION-DE...QQcmdZViewItem

In the meantime, invest in some Clorox wipes to use after your cat's been on the counter. It'll make you feel better! LOL

Stephanie
post #11 of 20
i have a similar problem but instead of murphy going on the counters, which is ok for me, he's sneaking on my new dining room table and i've noticed very fine scratches on it now. i have NO IDEA what to do to curtail murphy getting on it. we can't do the double stick tape thing or spray repellants on it obviously because of the fine wood finish and he only does it at night so i can't reprimand him.

any ideas?

as far as your counter problem, i guess i'd just get used to putting everything away even if you leave the room for a minute. murphy doesn't eat our food but we have the same issue with drinks. we can't ever keep drinks out unattended (except coffee... thank God he hates the cinnamon i put in it so it keeps him out!) but if we have a glass of anything and turn our back, he'll try and stick his little face in it and sometimes accidentally knocks it over.

i just took this pic of murphy on the counter. he loves hanging out with mommy when i'm making coffee or cooking. we have this long bar between the kitchen and living room and that's his play spot. in that pic, he's playing with the charm bracelet on my cellphone... one of his favorite toys. lol

post #12 of 20
Don't have the counter problem with Butzie. One thing she does do is look in the refrigerater when it it open. I think it is cute that she is curious and told her so. She then sees that it is not an issue and gets down. I offered her "people food" from the fridge but she doesn't want it. I guess my advice is to just praise the curiousity, don't obsess, and get the food off the counter.
post #13 of 20
I hate my cat getting on the counters too. But I have learned just to deal with it. She is a cat, she will do whatever she wants. Bonus points if I don't allow her to go there, that makes it even better & more interesting for her.

I do have a water bottle to curb the behavior as much as I can, I thought she was trained but it ended up she was just doing it when she thought I couldn't see/was asleep.

I have stocked up on those antibacterial wipes and use them obsessively and also keep all food and dishes off of the counter at all times. We are extremely clean people so it isn't hard to do. When we have people over for dinner and get together we put the cat away during meal time and if we have snacks out.
post #14 of 20
Luckily Tsar doesn't seem to have an interest in the counters...just the built in kitchen table. One weekend she was super persistant and just about every 5 minutes she was up there! We ended up putting her in "time out" which is 5 minutes in her carrier. That has proven to be pretty effective, no kitty likes to be away from the fun! It works too for when we can't catch her in time but it has been seconds after the event.

PS I'm a grad student and my boyfriend works a lot to earn enough money to pay the bills. It is not feasable for us to keep our counters sparkling clean all the time. I don't have the time to scrub everything down every day. I also don't think you should have to do that, just to please the cat. Yes, they think they run the whole world, but with training you should be able to prevent it.
post #15 of 20
Blossom always gets onto the counter tops when I'm preparing food or doing the dishes. I put/push her down/ She'll jump up a few times until I'm finished what I'm doing. I've put double sided tape & foil on the edge but it doesn't deter her. Although I've only given her a squirt from a water bottle a few times she instantly stops what she's doing when she hears the trigger. After reading all these post I realize she's a normal kitty. Other cats I've had in the past haven't been so persistant.
post #16 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by Brittany View Post
I also don't think you should have to do that, just to please the cat. Yes, they think they run the whole world, but with training you should be able to prevent it.
Well good for you can think like that and your cat behaves reasonably with time out.
Mine doesn't , she has tons of energy and loves to be up high. She has a tall cat tree and lots of toys, tunnels, another cat tree, gets lots of exercise. We have tried everything (including time outs, supervision only for consistency, water bottles, pennies in can, material up there, etc) except scat mats. That is next on the list perhaps, still haven't decided.

I don't mind keeping everything sparkling clean, I did anyway, it doesn't take much time and becomes routine. I have just invested twice as much into those antibacterial wipes since having a cat. Sure it gets annoying, but having a pet cat doesn't always mean you can call all the shots.
post #17 of 20
You could try some sticky tape (like the kind to stop them from clawing furniture) on the counter.

But we learned (with the rexes) its a lot better to just keep the counters free of food.

And leaving butter out is not a good practice to be doing - cats or no cats. Are you talking about leaving it for hours?
post #18 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by cococat View Post
Mine doesn't , she has tons of energy and loves to be up high. She has a tall cat tree and lots of toys, tunnels, another cat tree, gets lots of exercise.
Is it a matter of being up high? Would it be feasible to put a cat tree in the kitchen? That might satisfy her need to be elevated to see what's going on, and your desire to keep her off the counter...

Just a thought.
post #19 of 20
Something else I do is open the back door (we have a glass screened type door on it), put a chair in front of it and let my cat sit up there and look out the window while I'm in the kichen. She loves it! Sometimes I even get out the 3-step step ladder for her to sit on because she's up higher.

For the dinning room table, get a nice tablecloth, then get some carpet runners. Trim them to fit the length of the table, then turn them upside down on the table. They won't like the feel of the nubby things on the back of the carpet runners. The tablecloth will protect your table. You could also use the tape on top of the tablecloth, if you wanted to try that instead of the carpet runners.

Stephanie
post #20 of 20
Quote:
Originally Posted by stephanietx View Post
Something else I do is open the back door (we have a glass screened type door on it), put a chair in front of it and let my cat sit up there and look out the window while I'm in the kichen. She loves it! Sometimes I even get out the 3-step step ladder for her to sit on because she's up higher.

For the dinning room table, get a nice tablecloth, then get some carpet runners. Trim them to fit the length of the table, then turn them upside down on the table. They won't like the feel of the nubby things on the back of the carpet runners. The tablecloth will protect your table. You could also use the tape on top of the tablecloth, if you wanted to try that instead of the carpet runners.

Stephanie
those are great ideas, stephanie! i figured a table cloth would help protect the table but it's new and i just haven't gotten around to go shopping for one yet. also, i was afraid it would just slide off when murphy jumps up there but the carpet runner trick should help it stay put since it won't be directly against the slick surface of the wood.

thanks!!
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