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How to Keep Cats Off Counters and Enjoy a Clean Kitchen

how to keep cats off counters

You’re not alone in asking how to keep cats off counters. Having to constantly clean apparent muddy paw prints or invisible germs that you know are there from your spotless kitchen surfaces is inconvenient, no matter how much you like your feline friend. 

Cats are known for jumping and climbing. In the wild, they climb trees and leap great distances to navigate their area, avoid danger, and obtain food. As a result, it’s not surprising that many domesticated cats attempt to engage these instincts despite the fact that they live inside. As a result, you will need to come up with techniques to keep your cat off counters, tables, and other surfaces.

Why Do Cats Jump on the Counter?

Cats find themselves drawn to kitchen countertops for a number of reasons. Once you’ve determined why your cat enjoys the countertop so much, you may use that knowledge to adjust or modify your cat’s behavior.

  • Cats enjoy heights: Counters are sufficiently high so that most cats are able to jump up from the ground or use a chair to help them up.
  • The kitchen counter smells great: They’re frequently stocked with desirable foods like raw chicken pieces, ground beef, cheese, bread, or some leftover food. A sloppy-cleaned countertop might also have crumbs and spills that a cat would love to nibble on.
  • Cats enjoy running water: Some cats are lured to running water in the kitchen sink While the kitchen sink is probably cleaner than the toilet, your cat has better alternatives.
  • Cats are curious: Curiosity is a sign of intelligence in cats. Many felines are just seeking answers when it comes to counter-jumping. The counter presents an interesting place with multiple smells to investigate, especially for indoor-only cats.

How to Keep Cats off Kitchen Counters

Use Double-Sided Sticky Tape

Just place the double-sided sticky tape along the perimeter of your kitchen counters. Make sure that you cover the whole perimeter and leave no gaps. Cats despise sticky things and will most likely avoid your counter. 

Applying sticky tape is simple, because it just makes surfaces less appealing to your cats, without harming their paws or destroying your counters. It should be noted that this method is intended to be temporary, as the sticky tape will eventually lose its stickiness. 

Try Kitchen Foil or Baking Sheets

Cats despise the crinkly texture and the sound of foil beneath their paws, therefore they will learn to avoid the location. The most inconvenient thing for you will be having foil all over your kitchen counter, but the idea is that you will only need it there temporarily. When your cat associates your kitchen counters with anything unpleasant, it will likely quit climbing on top of them.

Try Cucumber as a Discouragement

Cucumbers seem to frighten around half of all cats. Specialists in the behavior of animals have yet to solve this mystery, however, it might be related to cucumbers reminding cats of snakes. Because cats are scared of cucumbers and dislike the scent placing slices on the counter could discourage them from hopping on.

Remove Chairs From Around Your Counters

If you put chairs near your counters, your cat will find it much simpler to jump up. Many cats are found on counters because of nearby chairs and other pieces of furniture, which provide a starting point to make the jump less difficult. If this is the case with your cat, just remove any chairs or other similar things that may assist your cat in reaching higher surfaces.

cat on a kitchen counter

Use Clicker Training

Positive reinforcement, rather than punishment, works best for cats. If you find your cat on the counter seeking food, tempt them away with a treat or other reward, such as putting a toy on the floor near the counter. Pair the reward with a clicker that produces a sound after they’ve jumped off. Your cat will eventually link the clicker with the reward, and the clicker may be used alone to entice your cat away from the counter.

Give Them Somewhere Else to Climb

If your cat gets up on the counter because they are bored and want to explore, try new toys to divert their interest. There are a variety of entertaining and valuable cat trees available, including floor-to-ceiling towers and huge cat condos with lots of areas for your cat to play, scratch, and climb. 

What Not to Do

Cats do not respond well to punishment. Instead of linking the punishment to an activity, they link it to the punisher. 

  • Do not shout at or hit your cat for getting on the counter. They will become afraid of you, not the counter.
  • Avoid pushing your cat off of counters or tables. They could injure themselves.
  • Don’t use deterrents that might harm your cat.

Last Resort: How to Keep Cats off Tables and Counters

If nothing seems to be working despite your persistence and hard work, it may be time to seek the assistance of a cat’s behavioral therapist. In this case, the professional will most likely come to your home to analyze the matter and create new behavior modification tactics to assist you in keeping your cat off the countertop.

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