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how do you stop cats from jumping up on the counter?

My cat asimov always jumps up on the counter when i am preparing food.

I have tried using a spray bottle to keep him off the counter...

But it felt kind of mean so now i just put him in my room with the door closed when i am preparing food.

I don't like doing that.
 

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This is a constant struggle for me as well, although it is getting better. It pretty much takes 1,000 times of saying "NO" and spraying in the face with water for me, Stephano HATES the water bottle, so usually now just a shake of the bottle in his direction is enough to keep him from getting up there. Still, if we cook something that is very tempting to him, he'll get up there the second I walk away, so we do have to put him up if we are not able to cover everything with lids. That is what I do, I cover EVERYTHING with lids, or foil, and then set a bigger pan on top of the covered dish, it is exhausting. He is so bad. He will also steal our loaf of bread, so I have to keep that somewhere he can't get it. He has also stolen a box of cheese its and chewed through it. The other two cats are older, and don't do it anymore, so there is hope that Stephano will tire of this one day, but for now, it is exhausting. Stephano was a starving little stray when I found him, this is why he still feels the need to hunt for food all the time.
 

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A lot of us have given up this battle. They're not being brats, they simply like being up high, checking things out, and seeing what we're doing. I put all my food away, make my counters as boring as possible and wipe them down before I prepare food. Now, they're rarely up there when I'm not in the kitchen. I do like it when they keep me company while I do the dishes, though.
 

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I have been blessed with cats that for the most part don't jump on counters! I don't think I do anything extraordinary - they just don't do it as a rule (when I am around). On the very rare occasion that one will try, all I do is use my BIG MOMMY VOICE and give a firm but unmistakable NO! while snapping my fingers and pointing to the floor. The message is clear - DON'T DO THIS. Works for me.
 

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say, "NO!" or "OFF!" or both. Give them a gentle push on the bottom to help them move along if necessary.
But like the other posters say, it is going to take a few times and be persistent.

The best you can hope for is not to be there while you're around.

I get to see evidence of what looks like dance-a-thons on my stove top (stainless steel) most mornings, but no one will dare get up there while I'm there lol
 

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One of mine loves the dining room and kitchen table. He knows he's not supposed to be up there because everytime I catch him, he has the guiltiest look on his face like "oh, I know you told me not to get up here yesterday, but I thought that was just yesterday. You mean today too????" He gets down immediately when I see him, but I've given up trying to keep him from getting up there. I tried foil, but he just pulled it down.
 

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My SO said plz no cats on the counters. The first time my tuxy tried I did the deep voice of doom and said NO really loud. He hasnt tried since.
 
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