Every cat lover understands how cats have personalities and can think for themselves. Although cats can be raised to remain indoors, some cats like to go out, especially one which was adopted later in life and was used to previously being allowed outside. It’s great exercise to go play in the yard, and it’s certainly easier for the person the cat lives with who is responsible for cleaning the litter box. For someone who lives with such a cat, a cat door can make life easier by allowing the cat to enter and leave of their own accord rather than having to let them go in and out each time they decide they’re ready.
Teaching a Cat to Use Their Door
Typically, a cat won’t understand what their door is when it’s first installed. Teaching a cat to use the cat door is not as difficult as it might seem, but there are a few tricks on how to do it. First, you don’t want to physically show the cat how the door is used by simply pushing them in and out of the door a few times. Such a technique is uncomfortable and will make the cat come to dislike the door, or even be afraid of it. A better way is to hold the door open from the other side and allow the cat to come to you. After they become comfortable going through the door, call them from the other side with the flap closed.
Remember to be patient, some cats don’t learn to use the door as quickly as others. If your cat seems to be having trouble, try putting their food on the other side of the door when they’re hungry, or use treats to coax them through. You may also need to prop the door open with a stick for the first few days, then rearrange the stick to keep the door less open each day until the cat becomes comfortable using the door as it was intended. Also, keep training sessions limited to about ten minutes so the cat doesn’t get bored or view use of the door as a chore.
For a cat that wants to go outside, your life will certainly be easier once they become comfortable with their cat door. Whether you’re resting or busy around the house, the cat can simply let themselves in or out without needing your assistance. Of course, there are locking mechanisms which keep the door shut at times you might not want your cat to go out which is a concern for some people, especially those who live in areas with extreme weather. Overall, you and your cat will both be happier with the new addition to your home.