How can I get my young male cat to stop jumping up on high furniture and countertops?

Tiger is a 'teenage' male (unneutered) tabby that constantly jumps up on high furniture (chest of drawers) and countertops, dumps the trash can over, and goes after any boxed or packaged non-refridgerated foods that are on top of the fridge or on the counter. Tiger originally came to us as a severely malnourished and dehydrated kitten, finding his way to our front porch and basically lay down to die. We took him in, bathed him and nourished him back to health (which took quite a while and two vet visits). I know he likely foraged for his own food as best he could, probably trash cans, and he does need to be neutered. I need some good ideas to humanely keep him from jumping up on the chest-of-drawers and countertops. My husband is at his wit's end.

Asked by Member 748738 on Oct 8th 2008 Tagged jumping, climbing, humanfood, stubborn, energetic in Behavior & Training
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Best Answer


You can't directly punish him for doing it or he will never learn, but what you can do is make it an unpleasant thing to be up there, or possibly scare him when he does jump up there. some possible methods:

-A sheet of tinfoil on top of the surface, most cats really hate the feel and sound of tinfoil.
-Low tack tape (like artists drafting tape) stuck to the top of the item, when his paws hit it, he will hate the feel of something stuck to his fur.
-Tin cans or soda cans that will fall to the floor and make a racket when he hits them.
-There is also a scat mat or something similar that will give the cat a very mild shock when stepped on, never used one or looked for one but it apparently works as well.
-Something that smells of citrus, some cats really hate the smell of it.

Also, if you want him to stop climbing on your stuff, you should give him something to climb on that is acceptable, i.e. a nice tall cat tree.

Onyx answered on Oct 8th.

Other Answers


Izadore (Izzie)

We've said on Catster previously that you can't change a cat's inherent behavior, which climbing definitely is. If you don't already "free-feed" or leave food down all the time for Tiger, you may want to start. It sounds like he's hungry. Yes, neutering is a good idea. It will calm him down a lot. You need to explain to your DH that this is what a cat does. If he were a dog, he'd bark...a canary, he'd sing! It's just the way cats are.

Izadore (Izzie) answered on 10/8/08. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 1 Report this answer