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PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2011 5:49 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

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Location: Scotland - Paisley
miki129 wrote:
Ifness wrote:
I can't believe what I read in this topic. If you don't take the advice giving you are on your way of creating a very unhappy scared and beyond recovery bengal. Bengals are smart as you stated. What do you think? He won't remember what you do to him?

Do I love my bengals? Do they love me? Do they come to me for comfort? Do they come to me to comfort me when I am down or in pain? Yes yes yes yes. And I did not get there by scuffing them, spanking them, shocking them, ignoring them, locking them up, punishing them, making them sick from something on the counter.

I can't believe you are serious about these methods!

Do I tell my bengals 'off' counters and diner table? Yes, but like Erin in a normal quiet way. Do they stay off? When I am around mostly yes. When I am not around, no way. THEY ARE BENGALS!! If you want your cat to stay off places not allowed, get a battery operated toycat.

One of my bengals jumps on the kitchen counter and yells at me: "Hey, I am on the counter. I know I am not allowed so I'll let you know I am here. Are you coming? HEY!!! HELLO?? ARE YOU LISTENING TO ME? I AM ON THE COUNTER!"

Do I get mad? No this only makes me laugh and love her even more. Smart girl!



good post xx


I agree Miki ;)

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2011 5:51 pm 
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Senior Bengal

Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2010 6:09 pm
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Thank you everyone who gave helpful replies! I'm open and willing to try anything!

emeadow - Thank you! I will start implementing this immediately and see how it goes. I hope I get similar results to yours!

Ifness - Thank you for your opinions.
Ifness wrote:
Bengals are smart as you stated. What do you think? He won't remember what you do to him?

I think if my cat has the mental capacity and cognitive ability to remember that I punished him 5 minutes ago, he has the capacity to remember what the punishment was for. :wink:

Ifness wrote:
Do I love my bengals? Do they love me? Do they come to me for comfort? Do they come to me to comfort me when I am down or in pain? Yes yes yes yes.

Don't get me wrong, I love my little boy. Yes, I love him. Does he love me? I don't know. I'm sure he does in his own way. I'm not sure what a cat's capacity for 'love' is. He knows I feed him and play with him and cuddle him. Does he comfort me? Maybe. But realistically, I'm laying on the couch wrapped in a warm blanket, which may be luring him over. It's very tough to say he came with the intent to 'comfort me'. I couldn't say for sure that he's demonstrating altruism; leaving his toys and food bowl to show me his concern. Realistically, he's an animal, and has instincts. Maybe it wasn't his selfless concern for my welfare that brought him over, but the fact that now he's tired and his priority is to find a warm safe place to sleep. Or that he's bored and knows playtime and cuddles come from me.

(sorry, I studied a lot of ethology and animal bioethics in college :oops: )

Cats are cats, and while I think they embody a certain amount of self awareness and emotion - they are still just cats (and being so, operate mostly on instincts and resource priorities). It's tough, even for me, to stay away from anthropomorphism (especially when most cats, even mine, get treated like 'little humans' or children)! To communicate well with any animal you need to understand exactly how much they 'understand' and the methods they learn best under, and treat them accordingly (trust me, it makes it easier for both parties).
Please don't get me wrong here, I love my cat to death! But I understand that he may not (or maybe can't?) think on the same level as me. Thus, I keep learning and all punishments simple and direct to ensure that he has the best chance of 'understanding' and thus succeeding. I work at a wildlife park and here we train much bigger cats (lions, cheetahs, tigers). We are not a circus or anything but the big cats are trained different basic commands to help with vet care and routine husbandry. I don't think the lion is thinking, "I don't feel good so I'll cooperate so they can take some blood and see if I'm sick." In all honesty, he's probably 'thinking', "getting poked doesn't feel good, but that meat chunk on her stick is a resource I need to survive. I need to get it somehow."

Ifness wrote:
I can't believe you are serious about these methods!

Yes, I am serious about the methods I listed in my original post. These are simple and direct methods with (I'm hoping) little confusion for him. He's a cat, and I'm hoping the methods are simple enough for him to 'understand'. I'm hoping my cat will understand - "Sniffing on the counters doesn't feel good. So sniffing the counters isn't worth it." I don't know if he has that much forethought, but I'm hoping he'll understand.

Ifness wrote:
If you want your cat to stay off places not allowed, get a battery operated toycat.

If it were only that easy!! He has plenty of toys on the floor! Battery operated ones and regular ones that come and go on ~ 2 week rotations. He also gets 'enrichment boxes' (that's what we call them at work) full of treats he has to figure out how to get and different smells to sniff.

theclemsters - I would love to, but as I said the floor plan doesn't allow me to close off the kitchen. The house is pretty open.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2011 6:15 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

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Location: Scotland - Paisley
SafariCat7 wrote:

Ifness wrote:
If you want your cat to stay off places not allowed, get a battery operated toycat.

If it were only that easy!! He has plenty of toys on the floor! Battery operated ones and regular ones that come and go on ~ 2 week rotations. He also gets 'enrichment boxes' (that's what we call them at work) full of treats he has to figure out how to get and different smells to sniff.



I think the inference was to get a battery operated toy cat for yourself instead of a living breathing bengal, that way it will live up to your unreasonable expectation of it ;)

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2011 6:15 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

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SafariCat7 wrote:
Yes, I am serious about the methods I listed in my original post. These are simple and direct methods with (I'm hoping) little confusion for him. He's a cat, and I'm hoping the methods are simple enough for him to 'understand'.


So use methods a cat understands. Act like a cat. For example hishing at him he understands. Don't make him afraid of your hands. My hands never ever deliberately hurt my cats unless absolutely necessary with medical treatment. And even then, they forgive me instantly.

SafariCat7 wrote:
It's very tough to say he came with the intent to 'comfort me'.


Believe me, my cats do. Especially my eldest who has been here over 8 years. She gets upset and worried if something is wrong with us. She does not leave my lap before I am more calm, and she is no lap cat at all. She knows some things a lot earlier than I do.

SafariCat7 wrote:
Ifness wrote:
If you want your cat to stay off places not allowed, get a battery operated toycat.
If it were only that easy!! He has plenty of toys on the floor! Battery operated ones and regular ones that come and go on ~ 2 week rotations. He also gets 'enrichment boxes' (that's what we call them at work) full of treats he has to figure out how to get and different smells to sniff.


I meant this slighty different, but never mind. :-)

I hope the many given advice will work for you and your bengal. Goodluck!

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 28, 2011 7:12 pm 
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Joined: Thu Jan 21, 2010 6:09 pm
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Louise-paisley wrote:
I think the inference was to get a battery operated toy cat for yourself instead of a living breathing bengal, that way it will live up to your unreasonable expectation of it ;)


I hardly think house manners count as unreasonable? I'm not asking him to do anything he isn't fully capable of doing.

I'd be like taking kids away from parents who scold their children for jumping in and out of their seat during dinner. I think sitting during dinner time would be appropriate for my house. And it's not unreasonable to have your kids sit calmly during the dinner meal - they're fully capable. And to those who don't care if their children are up and down the whole meal - at least it's not my house

Even with cats, each house has different expectations for their cats (whether it be food, or litter manners, or playing). Honestly, this isn't an outrageous expectation to want him to keep off the counters.


Ifness wrote:
Act like a cat. For example hissing at him he understands.


I see cats use hissing more as a 'get away from me' act. I would not hold him and hiss at him. Mama cats normally smack kittens for misbehavior or too rough play. *You think Mama cats are rough, you should see a lion cub get scolded*:shock:

Ifness wrote:
Don't make him afraid of your hands.

He's not at all afraid of my hands, or me, or anything for that matter. Very brave boy. Seems to be very confident and sure of himself.


Ifness wrote:
SafariCat7 wrote:
It's very tough to say he came with the intent to 'comfort me'.


Believe me, my cats do.


I have no doubt that your cat comes and sits on your lap when you're distressed. I just think it's a leap to say what her motivations truly are. If thinking that she's there solely to comfort you comforts you, then that works - and comforts you. There's actually very few cases of reported demonstrations of animal altruism (a handful mainly, and in mostly very social animals that live in very tight social groups - elephants, meerkats, wolves). I don't know how much you've actually studied the topics, and will not get into a scholarly debate on a Bengal Blog about it. I just want advice for keeping my cat off the counters.

Ifness wrote:
SafariCat7 wrote:
Ifness wrote:
If you want your cat to stay off places not allowed, get a battery operated toycat.
If it were only that easy!! He has plenty of toys on the floor! Battery operated ones and regular ones that come and go on ~ 2 week rotations. He also gets 'enrichment boxes' (that's what we call them at work) full of treats he has to figure out how to get and different smells to sniff.


I meant this slighty different, but never mind. :-)


How did you mean it? I'm open to any ideas for keeping him off the counters. Like I said though, I don't think it's boredom because he has lots of toys! Spoiled rotten in that department as well :lol:

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2011 4:30 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Sun Apr 03, 2011 3:45 pm
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Location: Manchester, England
It is a curiosity thing. Mine loves following me everywhere, now she has a teatray on the corner of the worktop which she happily sits on when I'm cooking.

Otherwise I suggest you train them to sit on your shoulders! This lets them be up high and improves your/their balance haha! (my kitties love riding round up there...)


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2011 9:58 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

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Dude how did you get your cat to use the toilet? Pls tell me!

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2011 10:37 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

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have just read this thread....although Khan doesn't jump on the kitchen counters (yet) one of our night-calling cats does.

Am thinking of leaving a note out asking him not to. It's unreasonable of him to jump up on the counters when there's plenty of food in dishes on the floor. And he doesn't even wipe his feet afterwards. Whatever next? :lol:

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2011 10:50 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

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chrissie wrote:
have just read this thread....although Khan doesn't jump on the kitchen counters (yet) one of our night-calling cats does.

Am thinking of leaving a note out asking him not to. It's unreasonable of him to jump up on the counters when there's plenty of food in dishes on the floor. And he doesn't even wipe his feet afterwards. Whatever next? :lol:


Just send him an email ;)

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2011 11:09 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

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bet he'll just delete it unread. Just loves to dine out :lol:

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2011 11:32 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

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chrissie wrote:
bet he'll just delete it unread. Just loves to dine out :lol:


Mine loves to dine in - on toilet roll..



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PostPosted: Sun Apr 03, 2011 11:37 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

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hope you don't try to stick it back together again

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 04, 2011 12:13 am 
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Asian Leopard Cat

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chrissie wrote:
hope you don't try to stick it back together again


It's a bugger to wipe ya backside with I know that much ;)

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 04, 2011 12:51 am 
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You have to see it from your cat's point of view. He likes being on the counter, full stop.
If I were to tell you to stop eating at Mcdonalds or stop playing football or stop reading books or stop meeting your friends, would you do it?
Not if you liked doing it, you may stop it if I shouted and swore at you and hit you, but as soon as my back was turned you would carry on doing what you wanted to do. Does that mean you lack cognitive ability? How much punishment would I have to dole out, for you to stop it altogether? Once stopped would that make you happy? I would be happy, but would you be?

A cat is not a cow or a deer or any other animal that likes all four feet on the ground, cats have adapted to life in trees, life up high, they like jumping on things and leaping. That is a cat.
As far as safety is concerned then that is up to you, you are the adult here, you are the supposedly intelligent one, you have to devise ways to make it safe for your cat knowing that he will jump up on the counters.

WE expect cats to live with us and we make up the rules. As we are in control, sometimes we have to consider their feelings, wants and needs.
WE decide to keep them cooped up and limit their freedom, I feel counter surfing is a small price to pay for the enjoyment they give us.

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PostPosted: Mon Apr 04, 2011 2:00 pm 
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junglerose wrote:
You have to see it from your cat's point of view. He likes being on the counter, full stop.
If I were to tell you to stop eating at Mcdonalds or stop playing football or stop reading books or stop meeting your friends, would you do it?
Not if you liked doing it, you may stop it if I shouted and swore at you and hit you, but as soon as my back was turned you would carry on doing what you wanted to do. Does that mean you lack cognitive ability? How much punishment would I have to dole out, for you to stop it altogether? Once stopped would that make you happy? I would be happy, but would you be?

A cat is not a cow or a deer or any other animal that likes all four feet on the ground, cats have adapted to life in trees, life up high, they like jumping on things and leaping. That is a cat.
As far as safety is concerned then that is up to you, you are the adult here, you are the supposedly intelligent one, you have to devise ways to make it safe for your cat knowing that he will jump up on the counters.

WE expect cats to live with us and we make up the rules. As we are in control, sometimes we have to consider their feelings, wants and needs.
WE decide to keep them cooped up and limit their freedom, I feel counter surfing is a small price to pay for the enjoyment they give us.



yes i agree...... once i realised shiloh was not going to stop jumping the counters and he actually enjoyed it, i stopped worrying about it.... now i have 4 counter surfers lol..... xx

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