Cats, felines, kitties. Whatever names you call these furry creatures, it’s not surprising to see them following you wherever you go. After all, you’re their most favorite person in the whole wide world.
But, there are times you’d like to keep some areas of your home off-limits. Not that it’s a bad idea though. It’s just that there are rooms in the house that’s better off becoming a cat-free zone?
But, if you spoiled your kitties with free reign in your house, and you’d like to regain control, now’s your chance. Take a peek at the article below, and you might find some tips that’ll help you with the process.
How to keep a cat out of a room?
There are four major techniques to keep your felines off-limits from your room. These methods mainly include reinforcing positive behavior, adverse training, redirection, and physical barrier. Before you jumpstart with the solution of your choice, it’s best to determine any causes behind the behavior.
Take a look at each of these strategies discussed thoroughly below.
1. Reinforcing positive behavior
If you want to discipline your cat without you becoming its villain, then reinforcing its good behavior’s your best option. With this method, you need to reward the kitty every time it exhibits the desired action.
But, you shouldn’t confuse this method with spoiling the feline. With positive reinforcement, you simply assist the cat in getting what it wants on your terms.
Whenever your cat manages to stay out of the room as instructed, you reward it with a delicious treat. If your feline’s the touchy-feely type, then petting it might help in searing the behavior into its mind.
Depending on what makes your cat happy, take advantage and make utmost use of it. After all, you as their fur parent are the best assessor of their unique personality.
2. Adverse training
Adverse training is the exact opposite of positive reinforcement. With this type of strategy, you use objects, smells, or even sounds that your cat dislikes the most.
Once your cat discovers that their favorite nooks are filled with objects they despise, they’ll steer clear of it. It’s like you’re telling the feline not to go in that place covertly.
For this tactic, though, there are different tricks you can use to make it work. And, for this to work, your keen observation skills must come into play.
If you don’t want to be that harsh fur parent, you can start by leaving a small puddle of water on the floor. Since cats don’t like the feeling of wetness, stepping on the water itself might be a deal-breaker for them.
You can also try squirting water on the feline using a spray bottle whenever it tries going inside the room. But, always stay cautious and avoid spraying water into its ears and face.
Another method includes placing bad odors and bad tastes in the room. You can use cologne, citrus scents, vinegar, hot sauce, or even a commercially-manufactured non-toxic spray.
However, if you’re employing this route, make sure to be mindful of the ingredients in the said product. Some cat deterrents contain chemicals that’ll make your cat end up in a hospital instead.
Last, you can make use of objects that have unpleasant textures for your feline pals. Everyday household items like vinyl carpet runner, aluminum foil, duct tape, or even rocks can keep your kitty’s paws off the room.
Also, if you opt to use objects with unpleasant textures, make sure your cats don’t end up eating them. Just like with toxic cat deterrents, you don’t want your furry pal to end up with intestinal damage.
Redirection, or kitty alternatives, means distracting your feline pal. Think of it like luring the cat with something more interesting than that of your room.
So, to make this strategy work, you need to know what makes your cat tick. For instance, scratching their nails is one habit they can’t do without.
Thus, you can begin by providing the cat with a scratching post covered in sisal or carpet. You can also try giving cardboard scratch pads instead if you’re on a tight budget.
Another thing that cats love the most is climbing, right? If you don’t want them clambering on your treasured furniture, spend time with the feline.
Since cats are active creatures, it’s possible that climbing is their way of calling your attention. Thus, play with the cat to help it release some of its pent-up energy after staying indoors the whole day.
But, if you find your feline pal snoozing on your bed or couch, find another area for them to sleep instead. Be it a multi-leveled cat tree, cat bed, or window perch, make or buy what you think your kitty pal loves the best.
4. Create physical barriers
If all the abovementioned tactics aren’t working, then it’s time to install barricades. However, this solution might only work in the short-term, so you need to find a more effective method later on.
For starters, you can keep the door of that specific room closed at all times. But, the feline might still try and sneak inside the room if you’re not quick enough.
You can also try entering and exiting the room as quickly as you can. Try distracting the cat with its favorite toys or treats to buy you enough time to close the door.
If this still doesn’t do the trick, then install alternative barriers. Just like babyproofing the house, you can install gates to keep the cat away from the room.
What to do if you cannot keep your cat away from the room
Cats, like all other living creatures in this world, have different personalities. Hence, it’s expected that no single tactic or strategy will work for them in an instant.
You may even have to combine some of the strategies mentioned above to arrive at the desired result. But, if those methods mentioned above still aren’t working, then it’s time to take it to the next level.
First, ignore the cat altogether if it starts scratching your door so you’ll allow it inside the room. Unlike canines, scolding a cat makes it want to do the deed again, so better off disregard it on purpose.
If ignoring it makes the cat’s behavior turn for the worse, then try creating an outdoor cattery instead. Make sure that the area’s spacious enough not to unwittingly induce stress on the cat.
To avoid stressing the kitty, make sure the cattery has lots of room for it to roam around. You can even install perches and hiding places to make the place more fun for the cat.
But, of course, don’t forget to provide its food and water to keep the cat nourished and hydrated. Make sure as well the cattery’s well-protected from outdoor elements like wind, sun, and rain.
Don’t forget to place toys inside the cattery. Whatever toy you choose to install, make it mentally stimulating to the feline to avoid boredom.
Remember, no matter what tactic you choose to keep cats off your room, make sure to be consistent at all costs. Avoid getting your kitty pal all confused with what rules to follow because you don’t want to hurt its feelings.
If, after all these tips, you still find your cat entering a no-entry zone, seek professional help. It’s better to ask advice rather than keep the problem all to yourself and drive you nuts for the rest of your life.