5 ways to prevent cats from jumping on counters

Posted by Rachael. July 31st 2018. Tagged: Indoor pet care and Pet behaviour

Trying to prevent cats from jumping on counters and tables can be a difficult task. As naturally curious animals, cats will attempt to explore every bit of your home. Sometimes, this can be costly if a valuable item is knocked from a counter by your cat, but can also be dangerous.

We have a few tips on how to safely prevent cats from jumping on counters.

Put deterrents in place

If you have a curious cat that likes to jump and climb, consider a deterrent. Sticking foil or baking paper on counters will make a sound when your cat lands. This will startle them, but not physically harm them. They will eventually associate the startling sound with jumping on the counter and it will deter them from jumping in the future.

Offer alternatives in high places

A great way to prevent cats from jumping on counters and tables is to give them something else to climb. As natural climbers, cats crave vertical challenges and will be drawn to the high locations. A cat tower will satisfy their need to climb up high.

To make their own vertical space more appealing, place it near a window. As well as getting a good spot to snooze in the sun, your cat will be able to see outside. This will allow them to watch natural prey, such as birds, to entertain their natural curiosity and instincts.

Make counters less tempting

Cats climb purely out of curiosity. If there’s nothing to explore, they will quickly lose interest. Make sure there’s nothing to tempt them onto counters and tables by never leaving food out. Always wiping down surfaces to remove food odours will also take away any temptation. Consider using a citrus scented cleaner – this is a natural deterrent for cats.

As well as food, make sure there is nothing else to tempt your cat to climb up high. Consider getting blinds or curtains for windows near counters so that your cat can’t see outside.

Reconsider the feeding schedule

If your cat seems to be jumping on counters to scavenge food, it may be because they are hungry. You can find out if this is the case by simply offering them more cat food, or changing up their type of cat food. If the behaviour stops, adjust your feeding schedule.

However, you should be prepared for the possibility that your cat is happy to overeat. Keep a close eye on your cat’s weight and speak to your vet for advice if you think your pet is overweight.

Keep them away from the cooking

A cats sense of smell is 40 times stronger than that of a human. This means that any delicious-smelling food you’re cooking is extra appealing to your cat. The smells can excite their sense of curiosity, making them want to explore and find the source of the smell.

While liking your food can be a compliment, you may not appreciate the fur and dirty paws near, or sometimes in, your meal. There is also a danger that your cat could eat something that is bad for their health, as well as burning themselves on hot pieces of cooking utensils.

Keeping your cat in another room while you’re cooking can minimise the risk. Make sure they have somewhere to sleep and toys to keep them comfortable and stimulated.

However, this may not be suited to all cats. If your little feline scratches or whines to leave the location they are confined to, try not to leave them in there for too long to minimise stress.

The ‘don’ts’ of how to prevent cats from jumping on counters

While cats climbing can be frustrating, you shouldn’t ever:

  • Push or shoo your cat from a high location. This could lead to physical injury.
  • Leave out harmful foods that curious cats can get to. You can learn about the types of food you can’t feed your cat on our We Talk Cat blog.
  • Verbally scold or hit your cat to discipline them for jumping. This is more likely to make them frightened of you than prevent jumping.

If your cat has a mishap while exploring your home, make sure you have pet insurance. Visit www.argospetinsurance.co.uk for information about our various policies.

Argos Limited is an Appointed Representative of Home Retail Group Insurance Services Limited which is authorised and regulated as an insurance intermediary by the Financial Conduct Authority.

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