View Full Version : Cats on the counter poll

Jan in CA
10-22-2006, 01:44 PM
We've always had a problem with our cats getting on the kitchen counter. Long ago I decided to "choose my battles" and just clean the counters before I used them. My daughter moved in with her kitten and she doesn't want the kitten getting on the counters so we are constantly taking her off. It's a never ending battle. So..weigh in on the issue and if did manage to keep them off how did you do it.

10-22-2006, 01:55 PM
I have three cats, and one of them, Tristan, has always jumped up on the counters. Now he's too old to, but once in a while he still tries. It never bothered me that much, I like using those disinfecting wipes for the counters anyway.

However, I've heard that when a kitten starts getting interested in the counter tops you can "boobytrap" them by putting down double-sided tape or aluminum on the edges. Temporarily of course. :teehee:

You could also ask at this cat forum: www.catniplounge.com - you'll get ALOT of good advice there!

10-22-2006, 01:59 PM
I too have decide to pick my battles when it comes to the cats. If I see one of them (I have 2) on the counter I say no and off. Sierra gets off right away but Joey just sits and looks at me so I have to pick him up off the counter and put him on the floor. It doesn't happen enough for it to be a real problem.
My neighbor the self proclaimed crazy cat lady uses a water gun as she is telling them off. She swears after a few times they stop going on the counter.

10-22-2006, 02:03 PM
The trick with cats is to scare them into not wanting to do something again. I banged the door a few times when they jumped up on the counter, they don't do it if I am around, but I have heard them at night if I have left something out by mistake.

One of my cats has a fasination for water and is always in the kitchen sink.

10-22-2006, 02:12 PM
:oops: mine gets to hang out on the unused part of the dining table while we're eating, so I'm pretty sure she thinks to counter is ok :oops:. we haven't, however, *seen* her on the counter.

10-22-2006, 02:31 PM
My cat pretty much goes wherever she wants. :shrug: I have her food and water dish in a corner of a counter away from the 'main' counter because I had to move it when we had a dog. I like it there because nobody kicks the water bowl.

I never really work directly on the counter--use a cutting board--but I don't really find hair or anything on there. Just the occasional footprint if she investigates the sink.

10-22-2006, 02:34 PM
Jane, your husband growls? :rofl:

We're fighting a losing battle re the counters. They get on them even when we're in the room. One look or shout from either of us and they take off again, but it does no good. We know they're mocking us. :-x I'd prefer just giving up and doing as you do Jan, wipe the counters before using them, but dh emphatically disagrees.

We have finally given in regarding the top of the fridge, though. Mina the Evil has decided that is her sleeping spot, and she's managed to break quite a few things in her various attempts to settle in up there. We just make sure to wipe it down often to keep her hair out of the freezer. :ick:

10-22-2006, 02:38 PM
I don't let them on but how do you control a cat when you're not looking? I just wipe my counters down with the disinfecting wipes before I do anything. When I do catch them I usually just give a really loud clap and hiss at them...they get down right away. In fact my Cosmo (our black cat) jumps down as soon as he sees me but our kitten is still learning.

10-22-2006, 03:13 PM
The Binkster was a counter jumper when we first got him. Most helpful was the water bottle squirt. Eventually he would jump down as soon as he heard us get up to check on him or even when we just shook the bottle. Double sided tape was helpful too. I was advised by the vet to also try the plastic carpet runner stuff...remember what gramma had on her carpet to keep it clean from the doorway across the room, it had little pointy nubbies on the bottom to help it grip to the rug? We almost got some but most of what we could find at the hardware store wasn't "nubby" enough to be bothersome to his feet when placed pokey side up on anything. We rarely get to eat at our little table in our sucky little kitchen but when we do, Binky seems to think he can get up there. Usually the table is so loaded with junk, he never gets up there, so if it's cleaned off, he's curious. If it's just me, I don't care too much, just keep it clean, but I don't like to encourage the habit for the sanity of anyone that may doubt the condition of any food I prepare.

10-22-2006, 03:22 PM
We don't have cats anymore, but have had several in the past. None of them jumped on the counter...the dining table occasionally (not while we were eating), but never kitchen counters. Reminds me of a night we had brought home a cake won at a Cub Scout meeting. We left the cake out on the table over night and discovered that our kittens had nibbled the frosting around the perimeter of the cake, :teehee:

10-22-2006, 03:26 PM
Occasionally Butterscotch will hop on the counter so he can get to the top of the fridge. He never jumps on the side with the stove though for some reason. A spray bottle with water in it works wonders. Takes a few times of spritzing when they start doing it, but they eventually get the idea.

10-22-2006, 03:43 PM
We keep Frida's food on the counter to keep the dog out of it (she used to have her own room in our old house, but since we're renting, we don't want to cut out a kitty door. She generally keeps to that spot. Other than that, we just clean the counters regularly.

I have discovered that giving her everything she wants makes her a better kitty :roll: She seems to like us more too :teehee:

Jan in CA
10-22-2006, 03:45 PM
Re: water bottle spray... the kitten doesn't mind it at all so it's pretty useless. Even if she did I'd hesitate to use it though because we have laminate floors that get very slippery when wet. Spraying the cat, wiping the floor, spraying the cat, wiping the floor is just too much work. I'd never get anything done. :teehee:

Our old cat DID burn her feet on the stove once so we put down a cooling rack over the burner and she avoids it. :shrug: Glad I'm not the only one losing the battle though. :teehee:

10-22-2006, 03:55 PM
It was a losing battle trying to keep her off, so I am constantly washing the counters. Plus we have a garden window above the sink. I like to call it the kitty window because it is all hers! I don't keep anything on it but her. She just pushes everything aside when I try.

10-22-2006, 04:06 PM
I miss having a cat, DH isnt a big fan of them. But when I DID, I figured cats will be cats. :shrug: I wipe before using.

I never had trouble keeping the dog out of the cat food, but I DID have trouble keeping our DUCKS out of the cat food! :rofl: We had 2 ducks (Bonnie & Clyde) who we brought outside to the yard during the day.... the cat LOVED them (REALLY!) and we'd let them play in the kitchen sometimes... we'd have to move the cat food first, because Clyde would go right for it and his bill would end up flinging it all over the kitchen. :roflhard:

10-22-2006, 04:36 PM
Cheddar and Stanley will jump up on the counter and DR table if there is something "good" there... they especially LOVE tomatos, which we are always finding squished on the floor with littlebite marks in them. We've learned to move things to the stove, which, even though is the same height as the countertops we've yet to see them jump on.

Fred and Ginger are too tiny to get on the countertops, but I *know* they get on the table when we're not looking... we found them sleeping in an Amazon box on the table a few weeks ago.

We use the spray bottle and it's been effective so far.

10-22-2006, 05:13 PM
The older cats pretty much stay off the counters but not the kitten. Lucy goes anywhere she darn well pleases. :shrug:

10-22-2006, 05:34 PM
I have 2 cats, one of which is my darling Mulder in my avatar, and I have been blessed in that he was the most easily trainable can ever. He's 10 now, but in the early days I was afraid he would burn him self on the burner so i put down duct tape rolls on the counters. worked the very 1st time. We recently were "adopted" by Itchy who is the most precoucious fearless 1 year old kitten/tiger ever! he was harder to train off the counters, but the rolls of duct tape did eventually work. i like the duct tape because the sticky gets on their paws and doesn't come off for a while, so it's uncomfortable and icky for them for a while. :pout:

10-22-2006, 05:42 PM

I wish I could have a cat but I'm so insanely allergic to them. I just had to choose between breathing and kittening. I do, however, have a dog who is sometimes as finicky as a cat. . . Can I still be a knitter without a cat? It seems like it's a rule somewhere. . .

10-22-2006, 06:10 PM
My three rule the house, now. When I was growing up my father hated having my cat near the kitchen. We used to catch my cat licking the indoor grill (Gen-Aire). He loves our cats now, I guess in his old age he has gotten a little softer.

It's a whole different ball game now. All three of mine are free to roam. We keep a water bowl up on the counter for them. Our dog has his own on the floor. Their food bowl is on our laundry room counter. I have separate food bowl downstairs for Cookie (personal space issue kitty). They also like to roam on the top of our kitchen cabinets. When I am home by myself, Cookie usually sits with me at the dinner table right in front of me. I usually have to tell her "NO" when she tires to reach for my food. She growls and hisses and then goes away. It's quite comical.

We only move the water bowl from the counter when my one of Aunts come to visit. Which is not very often.

I figure they probably do what they want at night, so why stop them? I just use the Clorox wipes before I use the area to work on.

10-22-2006, 06:10 PM
Mine have to go on the counter to get to their window perches. It's the only windows in the house that allow for the perches. They still went on the counter even before we had the perches.

The one place they never go in on the stove. We have 3 different counter areas and they go on the other 2 but not the counter by the stove. :??

Smart little boogers. :rofl:

10-22-2006, 06:15 PM
When our cats were kittens we trained them not to even go into the kitchen. It was easy at the time because it was a galley-style kitchen with a narrow opening. We used the tin foil trick as well as the water bottle. I *know* that the cat we have left does go into the kitchen and occassionaly onto the counters, but it's always late at night after dh & I are snuggled into bed. In 10 years I have yet to catch her in there. :)

10-23-2006, 03:52 AM
Nooooo. I myself cannot get my mind around allowing them to get on the counters or on the table. Might as well just dump the catbox on there. My cat is weird though. She won't touch food even if it's on the floor.

10-23-2006, 07:49 AM
a water pistol. Thats how I manage it but I know that when I'm not there or not looking she is all over them the little mischief maker!

10-23-2006, 08:10 AM
Tia knows better than to get on the counter in the day time, but I hear her up there at night.

The odd time that I am not home at night if I am at my mothers or something and my husband leaves a frying pan on the stove Tia licks the grease out of the bottom of it. Daddy leaves nice kitty treats!!

She does sit on the kitchen table and bask in the sun on it as it is in front of a big window. I am just careful to wash it really well before we use it. The dining table she never gets on (as far as I know) and is not allowed.

10-23-2006, 08:21 AM
Losing battle here. I tried the "NO" and putting her down on the floor, the squirt gun but she thought that was a game and we used a horn to scare her off. The horn was more obnoxious to us then her. My kitty will not get up on the counter unless we are ignoring her and then it's her last ditch effort to get attention. Overall she's been pretty good about it and I sanitize my counters with Clorox spray and Clorox wipes. This past week has been a war though, my husband's mom died and his sister is staying with us. She's a self proclaimed animal "disliker" and I think my cat jumps on the counter just to freak her out! :roflhard:

10-23-2006, 09:54 AM
I have never had a cat get ontop of my counters until I got my current cat Felix. He loves to lay on the counter and watch me do dishes and he also uses it as a leg-up to get on to of the fridge. When he was younger I tried many attempts to make him stop, but I finally decided that I would rather him lay on a counter than scratch up my couch. I can't say that it bothers me. Sure, sometimes his tail knocks over a cup or a plate of ketchup, but I clean it up. I also pinesol the counters twice a day. I've just learned to live with it.

BTW... I did try double sided tape, aluminum foil, putting a bunch of things on the counter in hopes that he wouldn't be able to jump up there, and a squirt gun when he was a baby.

He chewed up the tape and foil, knocked over a bunch of stuff or somehow made an amazing jump and squeezed in between things, and I found out that he loves water lol. I just let him now. He doesn't bother anything and I don't mind having a fan club while I do dishes. :roflhard:

10-23-2006, 03:17 PM
May I also mention that they INSIST on drinking out of the toilet bowl, and then immediately drinking out of my cup? I can't leave a glass of water unattended around this house! :!!!: I've been having stomach problems since Thursday and I'm betting that SOME furry beast may be to blame! :grrr:

10-23-2006, 03:28 PM
Yes, I must admit that my cats walk on the counter. I used to try to keep them off, but it never did any good, then one day, I realized that it really doesn't bother me, as long as I'm not working with food, at which time the cabnet can easily be cleaned.

Yes, the cats own the house...we just live here to serve. :roflhard:

10-23-2006, 03:36 PM
May I also mention that they INSIST on drinking out of the toilet bowl, and then immediately drinking out of my cup?

Whenever I'm going to leave any food or beverage unattended for even a little while, I make sure it's out of kitty's reach. I saw her dip a paw into my chocolate milk once -- and ever since then, I've been very careful.

As for the toilet bowl... maybe you can train your family to close the lid so the kitties don't have access. It can't be healthy for them, either.

10-23-2006, 09:25 PM
In January my wonderful cat Pounce died. He DID get on the counter when I wasn't looking, though not too often. He liked looking for butter. He knew better so would only do ii if I was gone or sometimes if I was down the hall and he thought I wouldn't notice. I really don't think my other cat does get on the counter-- but I can never be too sure.

10-23-2006, 11:36 PM
Kashmir is good about the counter. The table on the other hand is right in front of the french doors, so she loves to sun there. I moved a chair next to the doors and now she sleeps there. She's a great cat and isn't interested at all in human food. Keeping her out of the closet is impossible though.....


10-24-2006, 11:18 AM
my cat likes to lounge on the dining room table because it's near the sliding glass door. I don't mind that because we just wipe it down before we eat. what i don't like is when he gets up there while we're eating...

10-24-2006, 12:46 PM
We had a male cat, Rocky, who generally did whatever he liked. He especially liked pastry/baked goods. We could never leave a box of donuts on the counter, table, top of the fridge, because he would find it, open the box and take a sample from each donut. One day, I left a cake cooling on the counter (it was hot outta the oven), and when I came back a few minutes later, he had eaten the middle out of it. I had to buy one to take with us to a church function.

Of my current girls, only Cleo has any interest in the counter tops. We've tried the spray bottle and it scares her off for a few minutes, but if she's determined, well...

My DD used to let Cleo sit on the table for company while she ate her breakfast cereal. Cleo would wait for DD to turn her back or get something from the fridge and then lap up the milk in the bowl. More than one breakfast went into the garbage.

I just wipe the counter down before I use it. I think I'd rather put up with my kitties than the annual ant invasion! Now that's really disgusting!!

10-24-2006, 01:02 PM
That is so funny, a cat eating the middle of the cake!

Only my Toisie cat goes up on the counter (not my boy Paolo) but only when I'm doing something up in the cupboards and have dragged the stool over. Then she has to investigate what I'm doing. They like the dining room table though but usually get right down when we yell at them, unless they're feeling particularly uppity that day. (once again, Toisie the female)

ohhhhhhh how I love caaaaaaaaaaaaats

10-25-2006, 05:04 PM
We have three cats. The older one has never really liked counters and is now probably too old to truly jump up on them, but she is the kind of cat that likes little dark cubby holes, so counters are probably too open for her. Our boys OTOH would try to get to the highest places in the house and would try to get on the counters. A few times getting on to them and that has stopped (although I did vote that they probably do it when I'm not looking LOL!)

10-26-2006, 07:36 PM
Have you tried putting citrus peel on top of kitchen roll paper?

Most cats detest the smell of orange/tangerine peel - it would mean scooping up the peel and paper when you needed to use the counter but at least it'll stop them establishing the counter as a 'favourite' roosting place.

Citrus peel is also good for deterring cats away from electric plugs and cables - it's kinder than pepper dust because you're not risking hurting your cats eyes with the peel.

Limey (no pun intended)