Friday, August 11, 2017

Princess Puddin's Pet Parent Training Tips

Everyone knows you can train a dog, but not a kitty.  We kitties, though, can sure train our pet parents. I suspect some of us are better at this than others, so for my fellow kitties who may struggle with getting their pet parents in line, I’d like to provide some tried and true tips.

Today’s lesson covers how to train pet parents on proper feeding procedures. Yes, they don’t just come already knowing what to do.  Success in getting food when, where, and how one wants it, requires the kitty to perfect the art of speaking and of turning up her nose.
  • To get attention by speaking, the kitty must meow loudly as soon as the pet parent goes anywhere near the kitchen.
  •  And, if the pet parent doesn’t go near the kitchen when the kitty is hungry, then the kitty must meow wherever she is and keep looking back at the pet parent while prancing towards the kitchen.
  • Kitties must stand by the kitty bowl and meow especially plaintively once the pet parent hits the kitchen, even when food is already in the dish because the food is very often not to the kitty’s liking. 

The next step in training on proper feeding procedures is for the kitty to artfully turn up her cute kitty nose to indicate the food is unacceptable.  There are several factors that can cause food to be unacceptable.
  • Food has been in the bowl for over 60 seconds.
  • Food is not properly fluffed.
  • Kitty wants milk, not food.
  • Kitty wants food, not milk.
  • Kitty only thought food was a good idea and has changed her mind.
  • Kitty is distracted by the water bowl, a noise, the dog, or the pet parent turning its attention to anything other than the kitty.

 How does one artfully turn up a cute kitty nose? There are several techniques:
  • Sit or stand near the kitty bowl and stare at it.
  • Sit or stand near the kitty bowl and stare at the pet parent.
  • Add meowing to the stand or sit step as appropriate.
  • Sniff the food and look up at the pet parent accusingly.
  • Sniff the food and with an appropriate touch of disdain, walk at least two feet away and lie down.
  • By all means, do not touch the food.

Well trained pet parents will respond by continually fluffing up the wet food or washing the food from the kitty bowl to replace it with milk or whatever else the kitty desires until food satisfaction is achieved. Having a dog in the house is especially helpful when training pet parents on proper feeding procedures. 

My fellow kitties may ask, “How on earth can having a dog be helpful?” The answer is simple: dogs like kitty food and loving pet parents won’t want their dog to eat it. Because kitty food is not healthy for dogs, pet parents will rush to pick up, fluff up, or change out the kitty food to prevent the dog from scarfing it down. 
Puddin's delicately drinking
water from the dog bowl
 And, believe me, if you have a big dog like Lord Banjo, food can be scarfed down with one swipe of the tongue. That boy loves to eat my food—or anyone else’s for that matter—and he can lie near my bowl and scarf down food without ever lifting his head.  I consider that behavior the height of laziness, as I always gracefully stand when I eat.  I have trained Lord Banjo in other ways, but I haven’t been completely successful in the food arena as of yet.  This guide is about pet parent training, though, so we’ll leave doggie training for another day.

Meanwhile, I do hope my fellow kitties find these tips helpful, as I’m already hard at work on Lesson Two.

Write Princess Puddin’ at inkpenn119@gmail.com