Instructables
I found a kitten in the ditch as I was walking down the road one day.  I brought her home and cleaned her up with all intentions of giving her to one of my lovely friends.  Soon I was once again reminded of the old adage that "kittens are like opinions, everyone is trying to give them away".

To make a long story short; I was stuck with her.

So I decided to teach her how to fetch.

This is how I did it:
 
Remove these adsRemove these ads by Signing Up

Step 1: Find a toy that cats like

I grabbed a plastic bag and pretended like it was the coolest thing on Earth.  I made a lot of noise with it which really piqued the kitten's attention.  I acted foolish like that until she was entirely focused on the bag. 

Step 2: Make the bag into a ball

Then I tied the loud plastic bag into a ball and rubbed some cat treat on it to make it even more appealing. 



Step 3: Keep this in mind (a lesson in cats)

Carrying something in their mouth is natural for cats. It's what they do (especially female cats with their kittens).

You'll be able to tell if this is something natural for your damn cat or if it doesn't want to play fetch.

Dont get angry with your kitty if she doesn't want to play fetch. Just try different methods to get her to actually see YOU carry the ball back to the starting point (mostly in your mouth). Whenever she actually picks up the ball and tries to bring it back, Reward her! Simple playful pets work great! Once in a while give her a food treat (POUNCE, tuna, etc).  Don't spoil her with rewards though.  If you spoil her, then she'll just turn into a snobby cat like your friend's cat. 

Rewards should be random after she realises the routine. 

1-40 of 147Next »
hmm, lucas is two years old but not the brightest spark....ok..he is utterly brainless (but great, loving pet)
he should love this!!!he loves going for walks like our dogs

he is also a living fur scarf! so cute!

PS_ that is one cute kitten

Female cats are much smarter than males. It's just the same in every species and especially human.

my cat isn't very playful, and i've already spoiled him a bit...

catlily4 months ago
Adorable pet!
paste-eater2 years ago
I didn't even have to teach my kitty to fetch. I was shocked when she brought her toy back to me to be trown again :p
Demon45112 years ago
that is sooo cute I'm teaching my kitten that A.S.A.P!!!!
tsanun2 years ago
When i got my cat I was so happy. I always said "Kiss" and then put her lips to mine. Now whenever I hold her near my face and repeat the command she gives me a Kiss.
Athena783 years ago
If you want to teach a cat to play silly games, it is best to start when they are small, 6 mo or less. An older cat can still learn, but are more likely to look at you like you've lost your marbles and continue doing whatever they were doing. Younger cats can get up in the fun of it all a lot easier Also, I realized, when teaching my cats silly stuff, I have always talked to them like dogs, they seem to understand that the change in how I am talking to them means something, so I have my normal everyday voice, one to let the cats know they did bad, one to praise, and the "talk like a dog owner" to play.

All I did to teach my older cats fetch was to throw a paperball for them and call them back once they had it. I have cats and 3 learned this way. One learned by being a pest, I was NOT trying to tech him fetch, I just threw a paperball for him (as in "go play over there, you're bugging me") and he brought it back. I thought to myself, "OK, it's a cat, fetch is nothing new to me with cats" and threw it again. He brought it back. Like he taught himself. This particular cat is very obsessive though and fetch had to stop with him. He won't let the other 3 play with paperballs and he just doesn't stop. He will seriously play fetch for HOURS until I am so fed up I throw the toy away, then he gets it out of trash and meows to play. Or steals money or receipts from my pockets to play with. Fetch is fun, but an obsessive cat can make it not so fun anymore. ***psst*** he is the black and white in that pic. The Siamese knows fetch, but his specialty is sitting on my shoulder while I walk around the house. It cuter when he was little, now that thing is nearly 20lbs and a tad heavy for my shoulder.
rsmaudsley5 years ago
USE CAUTION WHEN TRYING THIS FOR THE FIRST TIME! Of my five cats, I have three that would make a MEAL out of a plastic grocery bag. They don't play with it, they EAT it. Apparently, during the manufacturing process, most bag makers add a fish-oil to the mix to make the bags not stick to each other. Some cats are inclined to eat the bag. But bread-bag twist ties or plastic clips, crumples up paper or a plastic water\soda bottle cap often work well. :-)
So THAT'S why I have one cat that licks bags and another that eats them...... and I thought they were just stupid.... Anyways I have one too, I got this cute little feral cat and he had decided plastic was funtime, he was playing in a grocery bag and got it stuck around his neck. He panicked and was FLYING around the living room, peeing everywhere, ended up under the bed attacking my hand while I tried to remove the bag. I finally just had to take the shredding to my hand to get the entire thing off him, his back claws had tore it up real bad so I was getting bag shreds for a few minutes instead of the handle around his neck. 3 years later, he is totally PARANOID about a shopping bag crinkling, but any other plastic bag, he eats it. The little weirdo also plays fetch with paperballs. No one taught him, we just threw the ball and he brought it back, now he finds paper anywhere he can and brings it to us to make him toys. Did I mention this cat is a weirdo?

Mine too. She loves plastic. She'll eat rubber bands, hair clips, plastic bags, plastic film off of gum packages. It's crazy!!

She used to climb into grocery bags until she got one of the handles stuck to her collar as she was getting out of it. It use pretty much the same as shamanwhitewolf's story. But she ran around the couch about 40 times with what looked like a cape. We couldn't tell it she was trying to save us from something or if she planned on attacking us. My wife and I were starting to get worried after lap 15 or 16. but she finally calmed down and we took the bag off her collar. I've never seen a cat pant like a dog before. Now she won't go near them unless we're around.

gibandy (author)  rsmaudsley5 years ago
AGREED! Please use caution when leaving any type of choking hazards, especially plastic bags around the house. Thanks for making us aware of this.
As to that bathroom wall quote, it most likely originated from the band Modest Mouse in their song "Out of Gas" "Had a drink the other day, opinions were like kittens I was giving them away." Modest Mouse is great check 'em out. They have a strange style which is great.
parkerace3 years ago
Sooooo cute! Can't believe you got the kitty to actually fetch. Mine would probably think I lost my mind if I tried to teach her something like this.
tinker2343 years ago
wow col tryed it my 25 pound cat wont budge to get a ball wild horses couldnt move him from my desk
Music man3 years ago
i want that cat CLONE IT!!!
Music man3 years ago
When my cat was little she used to put her hands in the food bowl and growl. I don't know why maybe it was because she shared a food bowl with my other cat but she grew out of it
u lost her like 8 years ago... :(
GreyWarden4 years ago
So in the step before this you said to rub cat food on it and afterward you put it in your mouth?
YUMMY!
Yep. Delicious!
if you don't want to take the time to teach them buy a siamease their prone to fetching you dont have to teach them to bring it back (not you have to spend the most time with them for it to bring it back usally) at least 95% fetch thats pretty good odds (did you know animal that fetch prefer certin objects like foam rings that come with cd's or a certin type of ciggerate packet lights or soft packs
Trollgunn4 years ago
What a cutie! I just love the spots.

I have two cats myself that are great retrievers. It's a fun game to play, at least for me since all I have to do is throw the ball/pompon/mouse etc. They do all the work :-)
lshar4 years ago
I really want to see a photo of this!!  A video would be even more instructional (-:
 Did you ever fake out your cat by pretending to throw it, or would that just be cruel?
nouveauanne4 years ago
She is EXCEPTIONALLY enthusiastic!!!   I love this, I had a little black and white cat once, who would play fetch and taught himself how to use the toilet!!! REALLY !! it was awesome......scared me to death, cause I heard someone peeing and was home alone..... so that's who I saw when I peeked in the bathroom, was soooo impressed, never had another cat play fetch or do that!  Yours is awesome!! Enjoy.  
harrilee4 years ago
that is so cooooooooooooooooooool
ellomate567 years ago
Yes, a cat is not a dog. Cats/Kittens don't do tricks not because ther are not smart, because they don't have the motivation (food, praise, pet). You have to find you're kitty's motivation and get lots of it. If it is petting, pet her, food, feed her, praise, talk to her. You get the idea. So, yes. A kitty is not a doggy.
In my opinion cats are rather smart compared to dogs. Maybe the reason they don't do tricks is because they are smart enough to realize that tricks are rather pointless.
actually cats will rarely do stuff for you because they're essentially egotistical self centred little balls of fur that think you're there for their amusement but it can be done when you don't feed a cat it demands food but a cat that loves people and attention can easily be manipulated in to fetching
True - but at the same time, if the cat is not overfed and a monster like ours, favorite treats are an amazing motivator :)

[I am in no way saying starve your cat, but do note how much food is a serving on the bag, it is usually a LOT less than you would think. Esp since the adults pretty much sleep something like 18 hours a day]
AKNeal4 years ago
This is a great Instructional. But my cat plays fetch naturally. I bought her a couple of those furry fake mice, she would play with them and leave them on the couch when she was finished. one time she left one of them on the couch while I was watching T.V. and I threw it across the room. she went after it and brought it right back. She put it in my lap and looked at me as if to say "do that agian". So I did. It's a great party trick.
quesoman4 years ago
i bet my scoutmaster would get a kick out of me teaching my cat to fetch for the pets meritbadge. and he's my vet
dooDIY4T76 years ago
If your cat does this I would make sure to supervise her because though rare occuring sometimes cats can choke on or actually swallow a plastic bag. And do you actually have to put it in ur mouth? Do cats realize that ur mouth is the same as theirs?
gibandy (author)  dooDIY4T75 years ago
Yes, you are correct, animals and people can choke on plastic bags. Do not leave plastic bags lying around your house if there is even a remote chance that anything living in your house could possibly choke on it. Yes, I put the bag in my mouth and would carry it back to the where i threw it from. I think some cats realize that our mouths are the same as theirs, although I am not certain.
unpro gibandy4 years ago
this step proofs that cats are the master instead :D
Well, right on then I might have to try to teach one of my cats to fetch.
johnru84 years ago
umm i'm wondering but did you use the catfood trick with this step?!?!? because i tried and... x.x it wasnt pretty.
  ROFL!!!!
krazipanda4 years ago
ur kittys soo cute :D
1-40 of 147Next »