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Wondering if your cute kitty is clever enough to learn to spin around? Showing off your cat’s skills is always fun and this moderately challenging task is sure to impress. Whether your cat picks up and masters one direction or has success with spinning either way, this training task for felines will be fun.
Your cat gets mental stimulation and exercise. You get to inspire fellow cat lovers to train their four-legged friends. It’s a win-win for everyone!
Cats have no problem standing on their hind legs. Cats are curious, love to explore, and are keen on seeing what is going on, no matter how high up the action is above their head. Training your cat to spin around on their hind legs is the advanced form of this exercise, however. Start with them on all fours. Once they’ve mastered the trick, you can see if your kitty has the strength and tenacity to try it two-legged!
To get set up for this fun trick, gather a lure toy that your cat adores, a food treat they cannot resist, and bring along your patience, too. Don’t train your cat if they seem distracted because it may turn your cat off completely from trying to learn tricks at all.
Cats are finicky as you know and will want to train when it suits them. That’s the beauty of the cat! Independence and a sweet demeanor go hand in hand in the feline world. Choose a distraction-free room, without noise or other animals moving about. You want your cat to focus on you.
The Toy Turns Method
This method involves your feline’s most favorite toy. Take some time a few days before by playing with your cat and this well-loved toy to get their interest up. Make it interesting and end each play session with a tasty treat.
Decide which spinning direction you think will work best for your furry feline. Some cats can be taught to spin to the left and to the right. Always work in one direction first.
Take your cat’s toy, and attempt to get your cat to turn their head toward the lure. Once you can definitely see that your cat is turning their head with a purpose, you can move to the next step.
Next, take the lure and encourage the turning of the head again as the first step. Then train your cat to turn their body as well toward the lure. This is done by moving the lure in the direction of their side.
Finally, train your cat to follow the lure from turning the head, to turning the body toward the lure, and then completing the circle. Offer a treat at each step if you think it’s needed to help your cat understand. Otherwise, a treat at completion of the trick works.
Make it smaller
Once you get your cat moving through the steps with ease, you can make the toy-following circle smaller. Eventually, you can remove the toy from the equation and your cat should follow your hand.
The Follow Your Nose Method
Train your cat to spin using an aromatic treat. Try a moist commercial treat they’ve never tried before, or something as simple as a piece of plain boiled chicken or a flake of tuna.
Hold the treat in your hand, directly in front of your cat’s nose. Move your hand in a big circle and watch your cat follow your hand.
Take a break
Encourage your cat to follow the treat all the way around their body. Their head should naturally turn and the body should have an arc in the middle. Practice having them follow the circle until it comes naturally. Remember, if your cat has had enough, take a break for the day at any point in the training session.
Next, add the command “spin” and observe as your cat follows your hand from close to their head, to the larger circumference circle.
Once your smart furry sidekick masters one spin, go for 2-3 in succession!
The Stand Tall Method
Hide a treat
This method involves a high-value aromatic treat as well, but instead of showing the treat, you enclose your hand around it.
Lift your hand over your cat’s head. Your cat should naturally look up. Once they have, give them the tasty morsel.
Practice makes perfect
Take another treat and repeat the action, encouraging your cat to lift their head. Practice several times, ending on a high note for this session. Practice the task over a few days.
In the next training session, encourage your cat to lift their head and then move on to coaxing them to stand on their hind legs. Once they do, give them a treat. Repeat this at multiple training sessions to ensure that your cat is comfortable on their hind legs.
Using the treat, make small circles above your cat once they are in the standing tall position. Realistically, your cat will be able to turn small quick circles before needing to go on all fours.
Written by Darlene Stott
Veterinary reviewed by:
Published: 02/17/2021, edited: 02/17/2021