How to Train Your Cat to Go to Her Spot

Cat at Spot
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Making your cat's designated spot on an elevated perch or near a window can make it more desirable for your feline.

We love our cats for their independent and curious natures. They often want to be where we are and see what we’re doing. But a cat who is underfoot or on the counters can be a nuisance — and a hazard. Teaching your cat to go to her spot can help to keep her — and you — safer while minimizing chaos in your home.

Start by Designating a Spot

The key to getting your cat to go to her spot is to make the spot a desirable and rewarding place to be.

Location is one factor to consider when setting up your kitty’s hangout. If your cat has an established place she likes to rest — on your desk, for example — placing the new resting area next to her old haunt can make it easier to transition to the new resting spot routine. Locating the resting space in a preferred vantage point, such as near a window or on an elevated perch, can also help make it an appealing place to hang out.

If your cat’s spot is portable — a bed, towel or blanket — start by placing it in a specific area, like on a secure shelf or next to her favorite chair. Then, with practice, it can be transitioned to other areas like her crate or the vet’s office to create an on-the-go safe space for your kitty.

A cat who is relaxed with handling may be lifted onto the space, while a cat who is not fond of being picked up or carried can perhaps be lured to the spot with a wand toy or trail of treats. Encourage your cat to seek out the designated resting spot on her own by placing treats, catnip and toys there randomly throughout the day for her to discover.

When your cat is in her spot, give her all the things she enjoys: treats, meals, attention, petting, toys and play. This teaches her to associate the spot with good things happening to her.

If you find your cat in an undesired space — on the kitchen counter, say — luring or physically moving her from the forbidden space and into the new area and then rewarding her once she’s there can help to reinforce the new routine.

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