How to Train Your Cat to Jump through a Hoop


We are moving away from the idea of using a base trick which can be used as the foundation behaviour for a further series of tricks. This particular trick involves a different sequence of actions from your cat, commencing at floor level. In fact, this is a very simple trick to teach your cat. One word of caution: remove any valuable ornaments – you may knock them over in your enthusiasm!

Training objective: To teach your cat to jump through a hoop on command.

Equipment: Fluorescent coloured hula-hoops are available, or you can make your own from plastic tubing bought from your local Do-it-Yourself supermarket or store.

Training steps

  1. Hold your hoop vertically on the floor, call your cat’s name and encourage him to walk through the hoop. As he gets near the hoop say the word “Jump”. Immediately he has walked through the hoop, offer him a treat.
  2. Repeat Step 1 a few times, until you are satisfied that your cat has learned the sequence.
  3. Repeat Step 1, but raise the hoop slightly from the floor. When your cat walks close to the hoop, say the word “Jump”, and when he responds correctly, give him the usual treat and praise.
  4. When your cat is happy with walking through a raised hoop, repeat Step 1, gradually raising the hoop to different heights until he perceives he can no longer walk through it. Encourage your cat to jump through the hoop by saying the word “Jump”.
  5. At this point, your cat may decide to walk around the hoop or scrabble underneath it. If this happens, withhold the treats and praise.
  6. Reinforce Step 4, using a height your cat is comfortable with. Once this step has been reinforced, you should be able to raise the hoop even higher. After this trick has been mastered, you can train your cat to jump back through the hoop.
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Filed Under: Pets & Animals

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About the Author: Fred Goodson has a passion for pets and animals. He has 4 dogs and is planning to have another one. He is also a blogger who writes about pets and animals. Currently, he is living in New Jersey.

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