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How to Have a Good Cat

This section is a condensed quick-reference summary of the most important points explained throughout Cat Be Good.

  • Diet affects cat behavior. Feed a wide variety of food (canned, dry, homemade, leftovers.)
  • Exercise affects cat behavior. Your cat strengthens his muscles by scratching his scratching post.
  • Spending time outdoors improves cat behavior. Unless there are inordinate threats to the cat’s safety and welfare, familiarize your cat with the outdoors. Spend time together outside learning the whereabouts of traffic and property boundaries and becoming familiar with passersby. Cats can become “street smart,” and this training may save their lives.
  • When your cat is bad, simply say “No!” Don’t say “No” with his name. Use his name only when he is good.
  • Do not spank your cat or squirt water on him.
  • Always make it pleasant for your cat to come to you or come home. Say “Hi!” and his name when he enters the room. Reward good behavior with kind words, petting, brushing, hugs, and kisses.
  • Adopt spayed or neutered, clawed cats only. Clawed cats need homes and are safer and cheaper to own. Do not declaw any cat.
  • Play with your cat every day. Use cat toys, not your hands.


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