Captured on Tape

Since I first wrote about clicker training in June, one month after my first equine workshop with Alexandra Kurland and Cindy Bennett Martin, the boys and I have been brushing up on our clicker routine every day. Cindy visited yesterday and was so kind as to take this video to show you.

Cindy explains it: “Who says you can’t train cats? Wonderful job teaching Barney to high five (party trick), spin (party trick + helpful for crate training), and to self-load in his carrier. No frantic, frustrating attempts to stuff the cat in the crate. He even waits to be invited out when the door is opened.”

Or here.

I think it was Cindy herself who suggested building the spinning behavior outside the crate. You can see how well it worked. Barney went from going straight in the crate and presenting his tail to the outside world, to the polished and elegant nose-front behavior you see in the video. (The occasional background banging was caused by photo-bomber Bugs batting at the screen door, demanding to be let out onto the Catio. Yes the front door was open. It was 60º F. In December.)


Barney is happy to accept your kudos.

Bugs can also do the crate-trick thing. He’s just too much of a dude to brag about it.


The book is by Maeve Binchy. It’s A Few of the Girls, a collection of stories full of the feet-on-the-ground wisdom and good cheer I have come to expect from Maeve, who, alas, has since passed over. I was so happy to find a story in the voice of a cat named Audrey. Maeve had a cat named Audrey. Here’s a picture, Maeve with Audrey or maybe somebody else. Of course Maeve loved cats:


Here’s where I got this pic.

In the waning days of 2016, filled with dread for the coming year(s), I hope all who need refuge find it. Maeve and I will be joining the boys in their crates.


About nadbugs

Anita loves cats. This must be because she, too, has had nine lives. She’s been dancing since she could walk, she was a commercial artist and advertising producer, she earned a third-degree black belt in Aikido, she is a drummer with the Afrique Aya Dance Company, she is an attorney, and she’s a meditator and a devoted student of Nonviolent Communication. She also spent one lifetime sidelined with a devastating back injury in 1992. Since then – FELDENKRAIS METHOD® to the rescue. The FELDENKRAIS METHOD is all about dreaming concretely – thinking intelligently and independently by way of a gracious and kind physicality. The work affords all who study it a process by which to reach, with movement, into the mind and the heart, to make nine lives into one whole being.
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7 Responses to Captured on Tape

  1. Summer says:

    Barney did awesome! And my human learned a few new things to add to my training – thanks!

  2. one and two girl kitties says:

    OMG Barney is a superstar!!!! He was fabulous!!! I am going to show this to the girls…..we need to get training…:)))

  3. Wazeau says:

    Awesome training! And excellent book

  4. Karen Lucas says:

    I was worried when you said that about being filled with dread, thinking you were sick, and then I remembered. I try not to. Love your clicker training. I have the clicker and about 6 books and want to train my 15 year old who has been with us for 3 years and is hypothyroid and needs regular blood tests. She has to be sedated at the vet because she is so terrified. I thought maybe she could be clicker trained to be more calm. My holistic vet smiled at the thought. I am hopeful and that is my plan for 2017.

  5. Connie says:

    I so wanted to clicker train my cats, but it was very hard to ‘load the clicker’ with four highly food motivated cats all trying to steal the treat. I think everyone should try it

  6. Well done! I was thinking/dreaming about doing this with Lumi. He is such a smart little man. I don’t want him to get bored, either, so maybe learning something new will help with that.

  7. kittiesblue says:

    What a wonderful job you have done with your training. Concats to Barney and Bugs for being such excellent students. XOCK, Lily Olivia, Mauricio, Misty May, Giulietta, Angel Fiona, Astrid, Lisbeth and Calista Jo

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