The only difference between your abilities and others is the ability to put yourself in their shoes and actually try. ― Leonardo Ruiz
The world is full of crazy people doing crazy cool things, so it takes a lot to impress me these days, but a young girl from the Czech Republic has trained her cat, Suki, to do agility. So have many others. Yes, you read that right: Cats are now doing agility. The sport no longer belongs to just dogs.
If you haven’t heard about dog agility, then you are missing out on some pretty amazing dog and handler skills. My dog Hocus Pocus and I absolutely love to do agility together! Nothing has strengthened our bond more. We are not experts by any means, but we do have a blast, and I discovered that she is incredibly skilled at this sport. Dog agility competitions are so much fun! Dogs soar through the complex obstacle courses with determination and speed. Now, just imagine a cat doing that.
Well, they can and they DO! Most people (even the most loving cat guardians) don’t realize that cats are easily trainable. If you have a cat that is willing to follow a dancing feather toy, or favorite food treat anywhere, then you have the tools to begin cat agility!
The videos below show cat agility in action. It’s amazing not only because cats are doing agility – quite well I must say – but it’s so inspiring to clearly see the bond that the cat and the person share together. This makes my heart sing, because it’s what I strive to teach young people; that they are capable of doing this and more with their feline companion!
Watch the 16 month young Suki’s agility in action, and performing cat “tricks” with her person! What a team!
Suki the cat at 8 months young and her person run the homemade agility course together:
Young people are practicing and perfecting cat agility in their homes all around the world. This young man has taught his cat, Cashmere, to rebound off of walls, all through the use of clicker training! Check out Cashmere and Puff!
Feline agility competitions have rapidly grown in popularity all around the world. The Cat Fancy Association started agility competitions in 2004, and other clubs have “jumped” at agility courses! The International Cat Agility Tournament is another example. The first agility competition was held in Portland, Oregon as part of the Oregon Cats show. It was titled, “Let the Cats Entertain You”. Forty-five cats entered. Some were pedigreed and some were moggies! They ranged from kittens to adults!
You can find upcoming cat agility shows (where you can enter your cat, or just watch the event) on the CFA cat show schedule and here. You can see a video of a kitten in training for the CFA Feline Agility here.
With the insight and right tools, you can train your feline friend to do all of this! Once you begin training your cat, you will interact in ways you never thought possible. It’s really quite easy, and it’s FUN for both you and your feline friend! Clicker training is how you can do it!
If you can dream it, you can do it. ― Helen Keller