Cat Training A-to-Z: Brief Glossary of Tools

Kitten using scratching post
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Scratching posts encourage clawing and scratching behavior from cats.

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Scratching post: A surface promoting clawing and scratching behavior from cats. Posts may be vertical or horizontal and are most frequently made of sisal, corrugated cardboard or carpeting. Scratching posts are useful for deterring unwanted clawing (for example, on furniture) and for dulling your cat’s claws in a healthy fashion.

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Target stick: A long wand that can expand or retract as needed, with a ball on one end that the cat is trained to touch with a body part, commonly his mouth or nose. Some target sticks have a built-in clicker. A wooden spoon can be used in place of a target stick.

Training pouch, treat pouch: Pouch that holds treats and clips to a belt, pocket or waistband or has a fanny pack-style band that wraps around the waist. Larger training pouches can also hold other necessities, such as keys and a cellphone.

Treat stations: Areas around the home where treats are stored to make rewarding good behavior easier. Treat stations provide an alternative to carrying treats all the time. Concealing the treat containers keeps the cat on her best behavior, as she does not know when or where she might be rewarded.

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