A Conversation for Training Your Pet

Hot Mustard and Other Goodies

Post 1


My stubborn little cat used to sit in front of us while we ate to intimidate us (or something) into feeding her. One day, my roommate ordered take-out Chinese and his meal came with hot mustard. He held a dab out on his chopsticks for the cat to sniff, and quickly touched it to her nose. She licked it, and all hell broke loose. Half an hour of glowering later, she was cured forever of begging and will only come near our food if we call her.

For those of you who have cats who like cardboard boxes to sit in but are tired of vacuuming up the little cardboard bits they chew off and fling around, try putting some lemon juice on the box edges.

For scratching furniture/clawing curtains/banging on doors in the middle of the night, a water pistol is most effective. Just make sure the cat never sees you "shoot"; the idea is to make him/her think that s/he randomly gets wet when doing certain things, not to make him/her frightened of you.

And for the occasional cat who likes to watch the male humans using to toilet, a quick squirt to the cat's head is *most* effective. smiley - tongueout

Hot Mustard and Other Goodies

Post 2

dElaphant (and Zeppo his dog (and Gummo, Zeppos dog)) - Left my apostrophes at the BBC

Pet stores sell something called "bitter apple." It's a spray that you use on items that you don't want dogs to chew.

I'd love to try the hot mustard trick, but I can't imagine spreading hot mustard on my curtains. I think the non-staining properties of the commercial product are better suited for some things.

Hot Mustard and Other Goodies

Post 3

Somer, Muse of Aged Cheese

My pet rabbit had a problem chewing off the drywall, so I purchased a tube of this gel called Sour Lime. Apparently, he loved it, so we just had to keep him outside or in his hutch, instead of indoors.
The moral of the story is, make sure what you're using is for your pet, and not just a general taste-repellant.

Hot Mustard and Other Goodies

Post 4

Spaceechik, Typomancer

The idea using a water pistol is a good one; cats DO NOT like water.
The only time when this method of discouragement is not recommended when said cat or kitten is in front of your favorite piece of electronics or your as-yet unframed Picasso print. A possible solution to this: my nephew Rob is gifted in being able to mimic the sound of almost anything. We found out that my cats were even more impressed by the SOUND of the squirt bottle, since the dreaded water never came. They'd shake their heads, look about wildly, then run! Best of all, I think they chalked it up to an act of God since no bottle was in sight, and didn't become afraid of us. Worth a try.

Hot Mustard and Other Goodies

Post 5

Cheerful Dragon

Here in the UK we don't have that 'sour apple' stuff. However, when he was a pup, Rufus used to try to chew the grooming tools while I groomed him. A squirt or two of lemon juice did the trick.

And a squirty bottle of water works on our cats, too. We've always used one of the kind you can get for doing plands. And, yes, just imitating the sound gets them going too.

A friend of ours took her dogs to obedience classes. They were quite good at most things, but she found that there were times when the dogs' attention wandered. The trainer who ran the classes recommended liver cooked in garlic. Apparently the smell while you're cooking it is horrendous, but lots of dogs really go for garlic, and our friend has had no problems getting her dogs' attention during training.

Hot Mustard and Other Goodies

Post 6

dElaphant (and Zeppo his dog (and Gummo, Zeppos dog)) - Left my apostrophes at the BBC

Sound is a good deterrent. I have not used this on Zeppo yet, but a trick my parents used on a previous dog was to fill a tin with buttons or coins. When the dog misbehaved, shaking the tin violently would startle her, and stop her from doing whatever she was doing. Sometimes tossing the tin near (not *at*!) the dog worked better, but make sure the tin is tightly sealed, or you end up with buttons everywhere.

Hot Mustard and Other Goodies

Post 7

dElaphant (and Zeppo his dog (and Gummo, Zeppos dog)) - Left my apostrophes at the BBC

Of course that is coupled with a firm "No!"

smiley - dog

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