clickerkittens clickerkittens

386 posts   921 followers   422 followings

Jiji & Jude  Raising cats like dogs. 🐾 Jiji- Born 3/14/17 Jude- Born 5/14/17 CPDT-KA 🐕

The slow and steady work on Jude’s backpack carrier conditioning is going well! We’ve been working on adding more movement and longer durations into the mix. Hopefully we’ll be able to start going on outings soon! 🐈🎒

We worked on this a little bit to clean up Jiji’s aim and start building some duration. I want to make sure this behavior isn’t totally obnoxious for Jude (even though he’s pretty tolerant), so I did some shaping to shift the trick from “swat blindly at Jude’s head” to “place paw on Jude’s shoulder blades”. I have them sharing the perch to keep them close enough together for Jiji to easily make contact with the correct spot, since I suspect the swatting came from Jiji originally having to reach out too far.

Even though Jude is only a few months younger than Jiji, he acts MUCH more like a kitten. He’s much more playful (and much larger) than Jiji, so we have to keep on top of structured daily play and training to prevent him from harassing his brother once he’s done with playtime. Thanks to catifying our space and providing lots of enrichment, these two are able to get along. I’ve seen a lot of folks advocate for letting animals “just work it out” without intervening, but managing the environment to keep everyone happy is so important in multi-animal homes. Letting these two “just work it out” could have easily resulted in fights! It seems like a much kinder and effective route for humans to step in and make sure everyone involved is comfortable and has their needs met.

Riley the border collie gave her parents a HUGE scare when she ran onto a busy four lane highway chasing cars. She thankfully came out unscathed, but that could have ended in tragedy. Here we’re working on a ds/cc training plan using the engage/disengage game (among other things like management, impulse control games and relaxation techniques). On our first session Riley was too stressed to eat even a full hour after seeing or hearing a car, and here during our third session she’s disengaging from the trigger on her own. Way to go, team Riley! 🏆
.
.
Sorry about the sound quality, the wind was awful!

It was Furiosa’s first day of kitten kindergarten and he did great! At first he wasn’t so sure about Porky and Bebe, but as class went on he started coming out of his shell and playing. We helped Fury feel safe by letting him explore at his own pace, allowing him to hide if he needed to, and rewarding exploration with treats and toys. ✨💕

Trash boy works for literal pieces of garbage (a crumpled foil wrapper from some leftover Halloween candy). He always appreciates treats, but play is also a huge motivator for him. I love seeing what I’m going to call enthusiasm in a recall behavior, which for cats can include quickly orienting to the handler, tail up, trotting or running, and vocalizing. ❤️

The cats disagree strongly with daylight savings and both sat on their stations an hour early hoping it would make dinner appear...

The cats outgrew their store bought tree so we ditched it and built them a new climbing wall from scratch. They have 6 carpeted shelves with guard rails for safety, a window perch, hooks to rotate out hanging toys, and a floor-to-ceiling climbing post. Traditional cat trees can be expensive (not to mention bulky and unattractive), but it’s so important to give indoor cats appropriate enrichment and vertical space to give them opportunities for exercise, mental stimulation, and places to practice species specific behaviors. There are a lot of creative ways to accomplish that without breaking the bank or compromising your aesthetic preferences! You’ll find plenty of wall mounted climbing structures available for purchase these days, or if you want to go the DIY route you can get tons of inspiration from @ikeahackers, @Hauspanther, and a long list of talented makers on Etsy.

Here’s our materials list:
.
1” thick plywood for shelves (free from wood shop scrap bin)
.
Carpet runners ($1 each from the dollar store)
.
ELVARLI post ($30 from IKEA)
.
200ft of 1/4” thick sisal rope ($8 from Home Depot)
.
Eyehooks and brackets (under $2 each from Home Depot)
.
White paint/primer and Gorilla Glue (leftover from past projects, but available at any hardware store).

Now we’re adding some movement into the mix forJude’s backpack conditioning. I’m using some super high value food for this (tiny pieces of real chicken breast), which he gets very very excited about, so when he stands up to try and expedite the chicken process I just stand still and wait for him to sit to move on. Even though he’s doing great with the training, we’re still going to spend at least a few weeks working on this inside the house before trying to go on a walk. He loves his hard carrier because of the long and consistent history we’ve built with that object, and we want to do the same with this one. Each training session is like depositing a little bit of money into a savings account. It may be slow, but little things add up over time!

Happy Halloween from my mom’s cat, Ginger! 👹🙀
.
.
.
Ginger basically adopted my mom. She belonged to the neighbors, but she preferred to spend most of her time at my mom’s house. When the neighbors had to move out of the country for work they planned on taking Ginger with them, but upon seeing how much Ginger and my mom loved each other, they decided to let her stay and spend the rest of her life here. They still keep in touch and get plenty of updates about Ginger! Fun fact: I helped my mom teach her to use the cat door, and Ginger will ONLY work for ham. Bonus fun fact: my mom routinely mixes our names up and calls the cat by my name, or me by the cat’s name.

Why settle for “trick OR treat” when you can have “trick AND treat”? 🎃
.
.
.
We worked on Jiji’s rebound and have been slowly and steadily working up to higher jumps. In today’s session I focused on gradually straightening out my legs so it was less about jumping and perching on a stable lap, and more about making contact and bouncing off a more vertical surface. You can see in the second video Jiji gets a little stuck, so I just wait for him to be ready and offer a lot of verbal encouragement. He’s getting more confident every time we work on it! 🙌

Slowly tacking on criteria, and now he gets a click for remaining sitting while the flap is zipped up. We set the session up so that Jude has the final say. I open the flap and if he walks in and sits he’s saying “I’m ready!”, and if he doesn’t he’s saying “no thanks.” It may seem counter-intuitive, (you might think why would an animal ever choose to be restrained?) but the more choice and control we give the learner, the more they tend to want to stick around and play the training game! Some additional signs I look for are low latency between repetitions (ie: he eats the treat and goes right back in with no hesitation), and Jude continuing to sit in the carrier even with the flap open until I toss a treat to reset him. #domorewithyourcat #petsbehavingwell

Most Popular Instagram Hashtags