How to Crate Train Your Cat With Daily Routine

 


All right, 30 days have passed and you are now ready to move on to phase 3:  Staying in the crate. If the first two phases were about patience and respecting your cat's speed and boundaries, this new phase is about CONSISTENCY. You want to repeat every single step, every day, exactly the same way. You really need to keep in mind that it is NOT ABOUT THE CARRIER.  Let's go over to step 6 and let's start with the last phase of crate training your cat. When your cat goes to eat, you're going to carefully close the door while still holding it in your hand (remember to leave space for her tail!), open it again and then you're going to walk away as usual. You're going to be thinking “Oh my god, my cat's going to get startled. She's not going to want to go in there. I'm going to go backwards! 😱” You're not! You are establishing a habit and the habit is IT'S NOT ABOUT THE DOOR! If your cat is not all the way in because they're a long cat, it's not a problem. Just bump their butt, open the door again, and walk away. The first few times your cat is probably going to take a step back and go “WHOA! What just happened?” but you walked away, so it was not about the door! It might have been a mistake for all they know. You're not gonna look at your cat. You're not gonna be in the area. Just let it go! Get them used to the feeling of something behind them. You know that you're ready to move on from step 6 to step 7 when your cat: first of all, does nothing when you touch them, they continue eating “It's not a big deal, I'm used to it!”; then sometimes they will bring their butt forward. Step 7 is teaching your cat to turn around in the carrier. You're going to need an extra little cat dish. If you don't have it, you can easily clean the lid of a jar and use that as one of the cat dishes. Here's how you're going to set up your two cat dishes: one of them is going to have just enough that they can take two or three bites and then they're done with it; the second dish is going to have the larger portion of your cat's meal. You're going to walk to the carrier with both dishes (and your cat following you cuz - you know - they’re hungry beasts😸), you're going to place the dish with the smallest amount in the very back in the right hand corner (just like in step 5 and 6). When your cat goes in, you're going to close the door (leave space for their tail!) and you're going to hold the door shut (while still leaving space for their tail) for a second. Your cat might try to come back out, or she might do nothing until she’s finished. Eventually she’s going to (figure out that she needs to) turn around. As soon as you see her turn around, so that her butt is not pushing against the door and her head is facing, you you're going to put the second dish in front of them right inside of the carrier. You're going to open the door, put the dish in and you're going to walk away. YES, YOUR CAT IS GOING TO GET OUT OF THE CRATE AT THIS POINT. It's okay because you kind of surprised them. You upped the ante. They were not expecting it, but it's not a big deal. You're going to repeat this step continuously until your cat turns around and starts eating right away. You're now on the final stretch. Step 8 is about establishing the habit: once your cat is used to eating a little bit in the back and then turning around and eating in the front, you can actually stop placing food in the first dish in the carrier. You’ll still have the first dish, but now there is nothing in it. You only feed your cat with the food that is in the second dish. Here is the extra in this step you're going to count to five. So this is how it's going to go: First dish, cat goes in, turns around, second dish, close the door, hold it close count to five... 1... 2... 3... 4... 5...  open the door, and move away. Again, it's not about the door, but it's about getting used to it and adding a little bit of that time that the door stays closed. Now, remember, this is really important: DON'T LOCK THE DOOR! Leave it open. Hold it in your hand. Just hold it closed and then reopen it. You will know that you're ready to move on to step 9 when your cat doesn't pause on the second dish anymore. It will probably take a couple of days or it might actually only take one day because we know how smart our cats are! So once your cat just kind of - you know - looks at the dish but doesn't even try to eat, you are ready to move on to Step 9: locking the door of the carrier. This is the step where you're going to teach your cat that the door locking does not mean that they are locked in there forever. This is key in this step. You are going to repeat everything you were doing in step 8 but instead of counting to five you're going to close the door lock it with whatever locking mechanism you have, you're going to wait for your cat to finish eating, then you're going to open it again. I always accompany my hand movement with the word “IN”. I'm always talking to my cats, so usually I'll say “Okay”, you know “go on IN! Get your food!” or “IN you go” and I kind of emphasize it, so that they connect my hand movement and my words to getting in the crate. Okay you've made it you're finally at Step 10. The only thing you're going to do here is getting your cat used to staying in the locked crate for longer periods of time, and you're going to start with super small baby steps! In step 10, once your cat is used to being in a crate and eating with the door closed, you are going to start counting when your cat is done eating (instead of right away as in step 9). You're going to count to five. 1… 2… 3...4… 5… and you're going to open the door. After you've done this for about a week, you're going to up the count to 10. You can also make this step really fun: you can play games with your cat. For example, you can close the door of the carrier, you can wait for your cat to finish eating, and then you can walk to the window, touch the window, walk back, open the door. Or walk to the door of the room you're in, walk back, and open the door. Play this game consistently, so if you chose to go to the window, make sure that you do it three or four days in a row so that your cat gets used to it and it's no big deal. You will know that you're done with this step because your cat will finish eating and then she will patiently wait for you to open the carrier door again. Congratulations🎉!!! If you made it to this step, YOUR CAT IS CRATE TRAINED! This is so awesome! Just repeat this every day, every time you're feeding them, and this will establish the lifelong habit that will make your cat comfortable in their crate. If you made it to this step, take a picture save it in your phone in that special folder, and then go ahead on instagram tag me and share it with me. I'm really looking forward to seeing your progress!!! So, quick summary of the phases that we went through:  Phase 1 is SEEING THE CARRIER. Phase 2 is EATING IN THE CARRIER The key here is PATIENCE! Take your time on the first two phases! Phase 2 is STAYING IN THE CARRIER CONSISTENCY is key here. Every day the same thing! Try to be as boring, as robotic as you can be when you're working on phase 3 Now I gave you a little bit of a sense of how long you should take for each step, but that really depends on you and your cat! Your boundaries, your cat's boundaries, your relationship need to develop. It is a new thing for you to work together this way and it takes a while to establish. Sometimes, with some cats, in three days they're set. Sometimes it can take two or three months, but that's not a big deal because it's not about the crate, it's not about the door, it's not about locking them in, IT'S ABOUT ESTABLISHING THE HABIT.  Think of that and let that carry you through. I made a printable for you that has the complete guide on everything we talked about, and it has a section that is printable that you can put on your fridge so that you can remind yourself where you're at (this is why i kept telling you take a picture! Because - you know - we all need to feel that we've accomplished something!) So go ahead and check it out, it's in the description. And as you're going through this, just remember: TRUST THE PROCESS, IT WILL WORK FOR YOU! If you enjoy this kind of content go ahead and subscribe, hit the bell so that we can discuss things when the video goes live, and also, if you learned anything in this video, go ahead and click the like button. Thank you for watching! I'm gonna see you in the next one. Bye

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