One of the difficulties I’ve had with my new kitten, Whiskers, is that he likes to jump up on the kitchen counters. It’s actually hard to get mad at him for it, because he genuinely doesn’t seem to see anything wrong with it. When I react, he looks at me like, “What?” I realize he doesn’t know any better and it’s my job to learn how to keep cats off counters and train him the right way. Here are the tips I’ve learned so far to keep cats off kitchen counters. I hope these help you too!
Why Do Cats Jump Up on Counters?First, let’s talk about the reasons why cats jump up on kitchen counters to begin with:
Cats love to be in high places. It’s a natural instinct for cats to want to be up high because it’s a great vantage point to watch out for predators and also to find prey.
Counters are cool in the summer. I had a cat several years ago who would spend most summer days laying in the tub because it was a cool surface LOL
Cats are built for jumping, and they like it.
They sometimes find food on the counters.
Cats like running water. They might like drinking from the faucet.
Is it Bad for Your Cat to Be on Your Counters?It can be. And here’s why:
It’s unsafe for your cat. Cats can injure themselves by jumping up onto sharp objects or a hot stove. They could expose themselves to poisonous cleaning products or eat food that’s bad for them.
How to Keep a Cat Off the CounterOne of the best ways to keep your cat off the counters is to make sure you don’t leave food out. That’s the biggest reason they’re getting up there. Then, make the countertop unpleasant for your cat by putting these things on the counters:
Double-sided sticky tape. This is actually made to stop cats from scratching furniture, but it’ll work to keep them off the counters as well.
Aluminum foil. The sound this makes when they jump on it usually startles them.
Cookie sheets. Again, the sound startles them, especially if they knock one off the counter and it falls on the floor – super loud and scary!
Clear plastic runners with nubs. These are uncomfortable for your cat to step on. (These also work well to keep your cat off the couch and other furniture, by the way).
Remove all TemptationsMake sure your counters are clear of things like an open butter dish, fun things like utensils, crumbs, food, and bread. My cat Whiskers decided he likes my dish sponge and my SOS pad and I kept finding these on the kitchen floor in the morning. So now I put those away at night.
Your cat might enjoy getting on the counter just to be in a higher place, and for a better vantage point to see everything. You might try getting them a cat tree or a window perch. That’s my cat, Whiskers in his cat tree in the pic. He spends several hours a day in it.
Try to Chill Out About ThisDon’t punish your cat or scream at them for getting on the counters. This will only make them afraid of you and stressed-out cats can develop all sorts of behavioral problems.
Remember that cats are cats. Their instincts will remain intact. They enjoy jumping up, being up high, finding food and playing with anything they can get their paws on. The love, companionship, affection and entertainment our cats provide for us on a daily basis far outweighs a simple annoyance like getting on the kitchen counters.