What is TTouch?Dogs/ Cats / Rabbits etc. - Companion AnimalsHorses - TTeamArticlesPractitionersWorkshopsResources
contact us
site map

  links newsletter photos testimonials fun & inspiration SHOP  
What is TTouch? Body Work Groundwork TTouch & Vets
Dogs Cats Birds Rabbits/ other Practitioner Training How to do the Touches
Horses - TTeam Playground of Higer Learning Practitioner Training
TTouch TTouch & Vets Puppies Clicker Training
What is Clicker Training Clicker for Shelters Articles Workshops
Practitioners in your Area How to Become a Practitioner Level Explanation
Complimentary Practitioners Products that help Healing Kennels & Catteries Pawtraits Where to buy Books & Products
DOGS      - Workshops      - Client Mornings      - Practitioner Training for
         Companion Animals
     - Lectures/Demos      - Clicker Training      - Puppy Classes CATS HORSES      - Workshops      - Practitioner Training      - Lectures/Demos/Client
        e-mail this page       print this page  
 ARTICLES > Clicker Training > Clicker Tips
  Clicker Training  Article:
Article By: Joan Orr        Publish Date: 2008-06-25

How to Tame Your Kitten, Clicker-Style by Joan Orr (Part 2)
Canny cats

Necessities of life

Every kitten will have to go to the vet for shots, spaying/neutering, and micro chipping. Visiting children will almost certainly try to pick up a kitten at one point or another. Teach your kitten to tolerate touch, using the same methods as for carrier training. Click and toss a treat (or dangle a toy for a few moments of play) when the kitten looks in your direction, then when she comes a little closer (and closer), and then when she comes to sniff your hand (if there is a little cat food gravy on your hand this will speed up the process!). Touch the kitten in different ways and on various parts of her body while letting her eat soft cat food from a syringe. Click and toss a treat any time the kitten makes contact or allows longer contact. Handle her feet, look in her eyes, feel her tummy, open her mouth as if you were the vet doing an exam. Click and treat each step to reinforce the kitten for cooperating.

When you play with the kitten, click and treat if she is fairly careful with her claws. Stop the game if she gets too rough. Raise your criteria so that she gets a click and treat (or more play) only when she uses soft paws (no claws at all). 

Taming shy or feral kittens.


Fearful or standoffish kittens benefit significantly from clicker training, because it gives them the control they need to build confidence.

Some kittens don’t want anything to do with humans and are fearful or standoffish. These kittens benefit significantly from clicker training because it gives them the control they need to build confidence. Click and toss a treat to a kitten from across the room. Allow the kitten to decide on the next move and click/treat anything that is a little closer to friendly or less fearful behaviour. Maybe just looking at you without hissing is worth a click.

Kittens can learn cute tricks like waving, spinning, standing on hind legs, and jumping to a chair without having to come too close. The clicker gives you a way to communicate with the kitten without encroaching on her space. Jennifer Shryock reinforces shy kittens with a click and treat (or play) when she sees them stretching. The stretch is a tension reliever for the kitten and, if reinforced, will be repeated. More stretching means a more relaxed kitten; eventually, the kitten can learn to stretch deliberately in order to calm herself.


Rewards for all


Clicker training will help any kitten gain confidence. The training increases the kitten’s trust in you, and she will be more likely to seek out your company. She may even get to the point of snuggling in your lap. If you are involved with kitten rescue or work at a shelter, clicker training cats and kittens to come to the front of the cages and to wave or give a high five makes them instantly more adoptable. Clicker training is easy to teach to new owners, and kittens adjust very quickly in a new home where the owners know how to give familiar cues and reinforce with a click/treat.

The click is non-emotional, clear, precise, and consistent—what a relief for the kitten when she discovers that these new people are just as trainable as the old ones!


  With thanks for permission from Karen Pryor’s website www.clickertraining.com

© 2006 TTouch - eugenie@ttouch.co.za.   All Rights Reserved.