Saturday, March 10, 2012

The big experiment: Can you train a cat to ring a bell?

Wentworth and Gawber normally reside in the studio/workshop and have free range to come and go as they please through a cat flap. We reckon that most cats around here would not know how to use a cat flap and to date, it hasn't been a problem. The problem lies not with other cats but the beasts they drag through either with the intention to eat or the desire to play with. Voles, mice, slow worms, lizards, birds and crickets have fallen foul of them both. It is fair to say that usually, only the mice and voles are eaten, the rest tend to escape or we set them free.

The thoughts of the house turning into a food larder or playground for beasts has so far prevented us installing a cat flap in the house. The cats do like to spend time in the house and often come in either during the day or at night for a couple of hours. Sometimes, if we are occupied with other things, they can be sat by the back door unnoticed for a long time. Occasionally Wentworth will come and find you but more often than not they wait until noticed.

We are experimenting. We have installed a small chrome budgie bell at the back door on the inside and have started to demonstrate that bell ringing = open door. The first time it was demonstrated, Wentworth went into "there is a strange alien shiny monster mode" and would not pass near it, Gawber on the other hand, sniffed, looked up and strolled out. I hope they learn to use it or are we wasting our time? Cats are notoriously awkward if they want to be... We will report back.


  1. They will . If they decide they need to train you.....

  2. I suspect you are right....

  3. Beautiful cat photos


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