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Any suggestions on how to train 2 kittens NOT to jump on the kitchen counter?

post #1 of 28
Thread Starter 

Hi everyone,

 

We have 5 cats, 2 of them being 6-month-old kittens.  The issue we are having with the kittens is that they have discovered that they LOVE to jump up on the kitchen counters.  We just had our entire kitchen remodeled and have all brand new countertops, so we really don't want cats on them!  Our older cats seem to know better and we very rarely catch them "counter surfing."  We have tried everything with the babies to try to instill it in them that the counters are off limits, but they just keep doing it!  Whenever we catch them, we immediately put them down and give them a firm "NO" or "OFF."  We have also tried squirting them with a little water whenever we catch them on the counters, but this clearly doesn't bother them enough to keep them from doing it since we'll find them back up on the counters 5-10 minutes later, if that!  They also walk across the ceramic cooktop and leave paw prints all over it, which is another thing that makes me crazy.  Any suggestions to break these 2 little boys of this naughty behavior would be greatly appreciated!  They have totally free run of the house other than this!  Am I really asking them too much to just stay off my new countertops?  LOL

post #2 of 28

That question is right up there with the meaning of life the universe and everything. If you have the wall space you might try putting up some shelves for them. I finally bought stock in Lysol wipes.

post #3 of 28
Thread Starter 

They actually have a pretty good sized cat condo in the living room to climb on and sleep in and about 100 different toys, turbo scratchers, pretty much everything!  I feel like I'm constantly wiping down countertops and the stovetop, LOL.  Hopefully, they'll outgrow it at some point.  Just tonight, I was making a sandwich and our giant lug of a tuxedo kitten, Ezra, jumped right up to check out when I was doing.  I immediately put him down on the floor and scolded him as I was doing it.  Not even 3 seconds later, he jumped right back up.  censor.gif 

post #4 of 28

My cats own the counters, so I know I'll be of no help here. Good luck with that though!

post #5 of 28
Thread Starter 

Well, Ezra is now on top of the refrigerator.  :jaw:  I just went out to the kitchen to get some water.  As I was standing at the fridge filling my glass from the water dispenser, he nearly scared me half to death when he came to the edge of the fridge and looked down at me like "is this okay, mom?"  Not exactly, since he has to jump up on the counter to get up there!  :argh:

post #6 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by jwathas View Post
 

Well, Ezra is now on top of the refrigerator.  :jaw:  I just went out to the kitchen to get some water.  As I was standing at the fridge filling my glass from the water dispenser, he nearly scared me half to death when he came to the edge of the fridge and looked down at me like "is this okay, mom?"  Not exactly, since he has to jump up on the counter to get up there!  :argh:

I'm trying to feel sorry for you.

post #7 of 28

I've had the same problem for the past week with the kitten I'm fostering for Christmas. I tried everything, and finally just decided to go with the flow and hope he gets tired of it.

 

post #8 of 28
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by caitini View Post
 

I've had the same problem for the past week with the kitten I'm fostering for Christmas. I tried everything, and finally just decided to go with the flow and hope he gets tired of it.

 

We have shiny countertops like yours, so the footprints show right up and drive me insane!

post #9 of 28

We have an article on this that may help:  Get Off! How to Discourage Your Cat from Jumping on Counters   :)

post #10 of 28

You think you've got problems?  My cat, Stormy, likes to wash the windows with her paws, leaving streaks and paw prints.  Also, she like to press up against the window when she is watching the birds leaving drool on the windows

post #11 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by MiraculousBeads View Post
 

You think you've got problems?  My cat, Stormy, likes to wash the windows with her paws, leaving streaks and paw prints.  Also, she like to press up against the window when she is watching the birds leaving drool on the windows

 

Yep, Fuzzy and Pierre do that too. My windows are a mess!

 

post #12 of 28

I've decided to embrace cats on the counter.  I built a walkway (actually just a big board) to allow my cats to walk between the cabinets; they were jumping between them and it was scary!  

 

One technique not yet mentioned is clicker training.  I used this method to teach my tabby, Archie to sit on a stool while I'm busy working in the kitchen.  He had a dangerous habit of getting underfoot while I was cooking.  Karen Pryor's book, Getting Started: Clicker Training for Cats provides a great introduction to the method.  Most cats find the training fun; mine did.

post #13 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by RickR View Post
 

I've decided to embrace cats on the counter.  I built a walkway (actually just a big board) to allow my cats to walk between the cabinets; they were jumping between them and it was scary!  

 

One technique not yet mentioned is clicker training.  I used this method to teach my tabby, Archie to sit on a stool while I'm busy working in the kitchen.  He had a dangerous habit of getting underfoot while I was cooking.  Karen Pryor's book, Getting Started: Clicker Training for Cats provides a great introduction to the method.  Most cats find the training fun; mine did.

 

Does that work with adult cats? That have been here for awhile? Penelopy has no fear of the stove, nor do the kittens, and when I'm cooking they have no qualms about walking on the counters on either side of the stove. Even Sara and Lucky never did that.

 

As far as being on the other counters though, meh. They are there. I mean it when I say they own it. All their treats and Sara's pills are there now for easier distribution / pilling. Plus it helps me remember better! Sara now uses it as her personal bed, which Lucky used to do. Lucky used to just stretch out on the counter as far as his legs would go, lol.

post #14 of 28

I go to put something away a few minutes ago in the fridge and suddenly have the feeling I'm being watched...

 

 

post #15 of 28

LOL Midi is too fat and old to be a counter surfer. 

post #16 of 28

I am a huge advocate of using clicker training on cats. Despite the popular perception you can't they are highly trainable animals. My save for keeping the off the counters for the most part was to sacrifice some unused space like our breakfast bar and a corner by the sink for their use. I did after all agree to share my space with them by bringing them home and confining them inside.

And there is a certain set of footprints I would pay anything to see tracked all over my freshly cleaned countertops the next morning. Just a little perspective.

post #17 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kittens Mom View Post
 

I am a huge advocate of using clicker training on cats. Despite the popular perception you can't they are highly trainable animals. My save for keeping the off the counters for the most part was to sacrifice some unused space like our breakfast bar and a corner by the sink for their use. I did after all agree to share my space with them by bringing them home and confining them inside.

And there is a certain set of footprints I would pay anything to see tracked all over my freshly cleaned countertops the next morning. Just a little perspective.

 

Indeed. I'd give anything to hear the sound of stuff being knocked on the floor by the klutziest cat I ever met in my life. My little ones are so careful and never knock anything down, it's so foreign to me!

 

I'll have to try the clicker training for the stove though, for their safety more than anything else. We have an electric stove with flat surfaces that are very nice to walk on, but obviously not so much when they are hot! And Penelopy is the worst, with Oscar being a close second. Had quite a hard time keeping them both away when cooking last weekend.

post #18 of 28

I read in a book I think that laying down some aluminum/tin foil will work because they don't like the way it crinkles? I never tried much with my girl as she was old and set in her ways, I just let her do whatever she wanted...but I think I would try training a kitten. Clicker training is also a good idea, as mentioned by Kittens Mom above. 

post #19 of 28

We squirt spray with water.  LOL  Ya know anything you do, they will learn to behave as long as you are there.  When you're gone - counters are free range.  It's funny as anything when we're watching TV and get up to get a drink and you hear a heavy drop of paws hit the floor. 

 

Don't stress, it's all part of living with the furr faces.  I keep handy 1 of 2 items: 1. go to your local Dollar Tree type store and purchase these cleaning wipes.  When I need to get cooking, yank out a wipe and all is well.  2. Get a little spritzer bottle, (again at a $ store) fill with peroxide.  When need to get cooking again - give a fast spray, wipe with paper towel and now your disinfected too.

 

Some kitties just like height too - do provide some of their own "Hi in the sky" seating.

 

Good Luck - Linda (aka "Mom - Cat")

post #20 of 28
We have a door for our kitchen. We close it when the kitchen is not in use. The rest of the time, either I or my DH or both are in the kitchen and can supervise and train our kitten not to jump on the counters (hissing, a loud clap, and a "No" work well). Cats are smart. Consistency is key.
post #21 of 28

This is a funny thread. At least I've laughed a lot. Anyhoo, there are some videos on YouTube showing a cat jumping on a counter covered in fly paper. You know, the paper that is all sticky  on one side. The cat hates the paper and keeps trying to shake it off its paws. That probably would discourage any cat.

post #22 of 28

you might give double sided tape a try. cats hate the sticky feeling on their paws. some people put pennies in a can and shake those. i have a window over the kitchen sink and bird feeders out there which= cat tv so mine are getting up there no matter what i do. i just gave up and clean the counter many many times a day...

post #23 of 28

actually I just gave up cause that is Opie's go to place when the vacuum cleaner starts up, or when all 7 grandchildren walk in the house, if Not there and he can get into the master bedroom he gets under the bed. If a few kids get quiet or go to sleep he will creep around the corners and see if all is safe and come out to see what the older ones are doing and will let the oldest 4 pet him a little bit.

post #24 of 28
 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Donutte View Post
 

 

Does that work with adult cats? That have been here for awhile? Penelopy has no fear of the stove, nor do the kittens, and when I'm cooking they have no qualms about walking on the counters on either side of the stove. Even Sara and Lucky never did that.


Hi Donutte, yes Clicker Training will work with cats of any age.  I think Archie was about a year old when I started with him.  And I have a friend who uses the method with her very adult cats.  It does take time and patience; it's not an overnight solution.  Below is a picture of Archie sitting pretty on "his" stool.  That where he stays while I'm cooking or eating dinner.  It's nice to have him join us while we're eating.

 


Edited by RickR - 12/28/15 at 5:54am
post #25 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by DreamerRose View Post
 

This is a funny thread. At least I've laughed a lot. Anyhoo, there are some videos on YouTube showing a cat jumping on a counter covered in fly paper. You know, the paper that is all sticky  on one side. The cat hates the paper and keeps trying to shake it off its paws. That probably would discourage any cat.


Before I decided to give in to cats on the counter, I tried fly paper, aluminum foil, cans with coins and many other remedies.  None of them worked for me.  Of course all cats are different and techniques that work with one cat may not succeed with another.  My cats learned very quickly how to navigate the fly paper.  They would put one paw down on the paper, then use another paw to hold the paper down so they could lift the first paw.  And of course they figured out how to simply push the sticky paper off of the counter.  

post #26 of 28
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mom - Cat View Post

We squirt spray with water.  LOL  Ya know anything you do, they will learn to behave as long as you are there.  When you're gone - counters are free range.  It's funny as anything when we're watching TV and get up to get a drink and you hear a heavy drop of paws hit the floor. 

Don't stress, it's all part of living with the furr faces.  I keep handy 1 of 2 items: 1. go to your local Dollar Tree type store and purchase these cleaning wipes.  When I need to get cooking, yank out a wipe and all is well.  2. Get a little spritzer bottle, (again at a $ store) fill with peroxide.  When need to get cooking again - give a fast spray, wipe with paper towel and now your disinfected too.

Some kitties just like height too - do provide some of their own "Hi in the sky" seating.

Good Luck - Linda (aka "Mom - Cat")

Hi, just wanted to add that spray bottles are not generally advised. They teach your cat to be afraid of you but don't teach them not to do the behavior. It will also, as you've noted, only stop them from doing it when you're around.
post #27 of 28

o boy is that ever the truth. feet hit the floor everytime we rise to go the bathroom or kitchen...

post #28 of 28

My kitty Hal is now about 4 1/2 months and he started "counter surfing". What has been working for me is cookie sheets. I put them on the counters so that they are over hanging the counter by an inch or so. When he tried to jump up the cookie sheets came clamoring down and scared the little guy. Now he sees the cookie sheets and stays away. Annoying having all these cookie sheets spread across the counter but it is a lot safer than letting him have access to the stove. Reminds me of when my daughters were little and I had to baby proof the house, with locks on cabinets and so on. Counters are not my worst fear, it is wires and electric cords. Hal LOVES them. Talk about baby proofing. I have all of the wires blocked somehow. Either by wrapping in big heavy towels or scatter rugs. Some of them I rubbed with lemon juice to ward off the "evil" offender. In my office forget about all the wires. I just shut the door to keep him out there is just too many wires between the computer and  stereo. But I love him just the same. Now if I could only figure out how to keep him out of the fish tank.thud.gif

 

 

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