5 Fun Clicker Training Tricks to Teach Your Cats: Step-by-Step Instructions

Clicker training for cats gives you the chance to bond with your feline friend and show off their unique skills.

Published June 14, 2023
Cat appears to give person a high five

Everyone thinks of clicker training as something for dogs, but cats respond to clicks too! Clicker training cats introduces you and your feline friend to a whole new world of tricks. Have you always dreamed of teaching your cat to high-five? Or maybe you'd love for them to roll over or "Sit pretty"? Get your clicker ready and follow these easy steps to teach your cat five of the coolest clicker training tricks out there.

1. The High-Five

A high five is a fun behavior that people engage in, and it's even cuter when cats do it. The goal is to get your cat to touch their paw to your hand whenever you say "High five!" or present a vertical hand to them.

  1. Sit down in front of your cat.
  2. Hold a treat in your hand and place it in front of your cat with your palm facing toward them.
  3. Your cat may begin sniffing at the treat. Wait until they paw at your hand to sound the clicker.
  4. Reward them with the treat and say, "High five."
  5. When your cat can perform this consistently, change your hand position to present them with just your flat palm with fingers pointing upward.
  6. When your cat's paw meets your palm, click and reward.

2. Spin in a Circle

Spinning in a circle is a fun trick you can easily teach a cat using clicker training. This one can take some patience, because cats aren't always eager to move around how you want them to. Focus on using high-value treats for this trick.

  1. Hold a treat in your hand and allow your cat to smell it.
  2. Move your hand in a wide circle and encourage your cat to follow the treat.
  3. Once they've completed an entire circle, click and reward them.
  4. When your cat can perform this consistently, gradually transition to using only your hand without a treat to motion a small circle as the command for the spin.
Quick Tip

Don't overdo it! Keep cat clicker training sessions short, so your pet doesn't get bored. Five to 15 minutes a day is plenty.

3. Roll Over

Dogs aren't the only ones who can roll over. Train your cat to perform this cool clicker trick in your free time.

Happy longhair cat rolling over on a kitchen floor at home
  1. When your cat is lying down on their side, approach them with a treat.
  2. Hold it close to their face, then move it over their shoulder in an arc, encouraging them to follow the treat with their nose.
  3. Guide them all the way to the other side; your cat should flop onto their back and then over onto the opposite side.
  4. Click and reward.
  5. When your cat can perform this consistently, add the end portion, where you lift the treat to get them back on their feet.
Quick Tip

Consistency is key here. Rolling over is a natural act for your cat, but associating it with a reward doesn't always come quickly, so keep practicing in short intervals.

4. Jump Through a Hoop

Have a hula hoop lying around? Why not train your feline friend to jump through it? Teaching your cat this fun trick will no doubt impress your friends and family, and might even get you into the cat circus (fingers crossed).

  1. Hold the hula hoop upright in front of your cat, keeping it in contact with the ground.
  2. Hold a treat in your hand and allow your cat to smell it.
  3. Guide your hand through the hoop, encouraging your cat to follow it.
  4. Once on the other side of the hoop, click and reward your cat.
  5. When your cat can perform this consistently, you can begin raising the hoop slightly.
Quick Tip

Make sure you "click and reward" each time your cat performs the desired action. If they don't understand, go back a step or break down the movement into bite-sized parts and work through each one.

5. Sit Pretty

"Sitting pretty" is often associated with little dogs, but your cat can learn to do it, too. But if your cat has any hip or back pain, skip this trick.

  1. Start with your cat in a sitting position.
  2. Bring a treat toward their face and allow them to sniff it.
  3. Slowly raise the treat up above their head so they have to sit on their hind legs to follow the treat with their nose.
  4. Say "Pretty," then click and reward.

Cool Clicker Training Tricks for Cats

Yes, you can teach an old cat (or a cat of any age, for that matter) new tricks! Getting your cat started on clicker training can allow you to teach them behaviors that will make both your lives easier, but it can also lead to some tricks that are just downright fun. Spend some time working on these cool tricks; it'll strengthen the bond you have with your cat and provide them with great enrichment.

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5 Fun Clicker Training Tricks to Teach Your Cats: Step-by-Step Instructions