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Published: Oct 25, 2011

When a dog misbehaves, most owners will give it a stern "NO!" Many dogs recognize this and understand that they should stop doing what has been deemed inappropriate. However, trying to correct a cat's bad behavior can be a bit more difficult.

VCA Animal Hospitals reports that yelling at a cat can cause fear, anxiety and even owner avoidance. It's important to remember that owners are punishing the behavior, not the cat. For example, if a cat is scratching on furniture, but doesn't have the means to scratch on anything else, it's simply doing what it would do in nature and shouldn't be scolded. In this instance, purchasing pet supplies like a cat scratch post may solve the problem.

Behavioral issues like continued rough play, chewing on household items instead of suitable toys or constant hissing should not be tolerated. To curb these problems, VCA suggests trying remote punishment. This is when an owner stays out of sight and watches the cat from a distance. Keep a close watch on the problems spot, like the couch it scratches. Once it goes into the trouble area, remain hidden and wait until it begins the destructive behavior. When it begins, spray it with a long range water bottle to chase the cat out. After a few times the problem should stop, and the cat won't blame you for its punishment.