How do I stop my cat from jumping on the table?

A question some cat owners ask is “How do I stop my cat from jumping on the table?” One answer is to remove items from the table. This technique is said to remove a cat’s desire to jump onto the table. If there is nothing on a table for a cat to get or play with then he won’t jump up. That is the theory. I suppose it may well work for a decent percentage of cats but each cat is an individual. I don’t believe the only reason all cats want to jump on a table is to knock something off it or play with an item.

Cat on a table
Cat on a table. Photo by The Marmot (Flickr)
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A lot of people will come up with a deterrent as a answer: put something on the table that puts the cat off. Smells and sounds come to mind but this is a form of punishment for doing something natural and it only makes the home less friendly for a cat. I think deterrents are to be avoided.

The answer is to cat-proof your home if you are concerned about furniture and household items (which actually works both ways as some items can be dangerous to a cat). I would doubt if cat lovers are sufficiently concerned about possessions to want to bother to cat-proof them (except for dangerous items like drugs). Also I am sure that only a relatively low percentage of domestic cats like to knock things off tables.

If a cat owner is concerned about their cat leaving paw marks on their table, as mentioned, leaving the table bare might help and what about putting on a table cloth when you are not at home? Or, as shown in the picture, provide a nice comfortable spot which she can use.

The reason why cats jump up is because they like to be high up for safety. It is inherent behaviour. Perhaps a good alternative such as a cat tree or condo is a sensible solution. There’d be no need to climb onto the table.

The absolute answer is not to worry about your table or possessions. Or get a cheap table 😉

33 thoughts on “How do I stop my cat from jumping on the table?”

  1. I can’t think of any reason why I would want to stop my cats from being on tables or counters.
    This is their home and, as I’ve always said, I’m grateful that they allow me to live here.

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  2. I think it’s a height thing, the cat just wants to get as high as possible, I had a cat who used to sit on top of an open door, so give the cat something higher than the table to climb onto.

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