Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Cat theatre!

I've been learning a lot about Russia recently.  A few days ago, I was asked to watch my friend's cat.  The last time I had a cat, I really wanted to prove that smart cats can learn tricks.  I taught her some simple things like fetch and how to jump on a chair on command.  I'd like to teach "Mew", my new cat, some tricks as well since she exhibits a lot of the same intelligent characteristics.  Yesterday I discovered that Russia has been running cat shows for years.  Peta has complained and I think that any show that involves animals has to be extremely careful but if they do a good job, I really like seeing what animals can do when we take the time to train them.

There are some newer "cat circus" shows on youtube.  Acro-cats brought some clever and absurdly cute ideas:

So, I've been wondering about what tricks I can teach Mew now.  It'd be fun to bring something original to the table.  The mind of a cat is a tricky one.  I believe Mew can be trained mainly because I can see she has a desire to impress plus, she really loves her treats.  It's something I noticed with my previous cat and I think it's key.

Yesterday, I started by holding the treat above a chair and issuing a command.  She doesn't get the treat until she sits up in the chair.  (She has to do this to reach the treat)  I'll keep doing this until I can take a step back and get her to do it without me holding the treat directly above her.  Eventually, Cinder, my previous cat, would listen when I pointed at the chair and she would sit patiently for her treat.

This is a primer for other tricks.  It's the most simple trick I can think of for a cat.  Once she's learned how to do this, I can start with other tricks.

I might do some research on what other people have done for more advanced tricks.

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