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Welcome, Crazy Cat People!
When thinking of adopting a Maine coon you are bound to have numerous questions such as ”Will my Maine coon jump onto my kitchen counters” and how can I prevent or stop my Maine coon from engaging in this behaviour?
I have studied cat behaviour and cat training for several years so have decided to write this article to answer your question and helo you rectify this behaviour.
Maine coon cats love to climb so it is common to find them jumping onto your kitchen counters. They may jump onto the counter out of curiosity, to get your attention, and they may also do this while looking for scraps of food; fortunately, you can train them to stop this behaviour.
Later on in this post, I will show you exactly how to deal with the behaviour and some interesting ways of going about it!
So keep reading my fellow crazy cat people to learn more!
I made an ULTIMATE GUIDE on how to train your Maine coon and how to teach them a variety of tricks! Click here now to take a look or bookmark for a later read!
Do Maine Coon Cats Jump On Kitchen Counters?
Maine coon cats have the most amazing and cute personalities and are very playful cats.
They can grow to be a large breed and like all felines, they love to be in high places so yes it is quite common for your Maine coon cat to jump up onto your tables and also your kitchen counters, it is a common trait of a Maine coon.
In my experience of living with cats, I have found that some cats are floor dwellers primarily and want to be on the ground while others do prefer to be up high for the majority of their day. I dont have an issue with my cats jumping onto my kitchen counters so it has never been an issue for me.
However you may not want your cats on your kitchen counters so fortunately for you there are ways you can train them to stay off and because Maine coons are an intelligent breed this shouldn’t be a hard task for you!
Why Do Cats Jump On Kitchen Counters?
First of all, I think it’s important for me to share with you why cats jump onto kitchen counters.
Understanding the reason why your cat behaves in this way can help you learn more about their psychology and to understand their behaviour a little more!
They may be looking for food – We all know that cats love treats and they are always on the lookout for food. Maine coons are big cats with big appetites, especially male cats. So if you have been preparing food on the counters then make sure you put everything away after because if they can smell a tasty morsel you can guarantee they will be there straight away.
They may be trying to escape danger – Cats naturally hide from predators by climbing trees and running away. If you live in a multi-pet household and they have been fighting with other cats or dogs or even playfighting they may jump onto kitchen counters to escape and to feel safe.
They dont have enough alternatives high places to jump up onto – As we have already established cats need vertical space within the home and if they dont have it then you can guarantee they will jump onto your kitchen surfaces.
Cat’s are naturally curious – Maine coons are no exception, they say that curiosity killed the cat! They see you in the kitchen preparing food and if you are like me and LOVE the food you spend a lot of time in the kitchen. They just want to see what the fuss is all about and sometimes they just like the smell of your food better than their own!
They are attracted to running water – One thing you will learn about the Maine coon is that they are attracted to running water. They have a natural obsession with it and believe it or not water can keep them entertained for hours. Your cat may jump onto the counter because they are attracted to the tap!
Do Maine Coons Cats Like To Climb?
I have answered this question for you already but I thought I would go into a little more detail for you. The natural wild cat has historically always been a climber.
In a cat’s mind, they are either hunting or being hunted, this is a natural born instinct.
Just like a wild cat will jump from tree to tree your Maine coon is going to jump from place to place in the home, from the top of the wardrobe and onto the bed, on top of the sofas and up to the refrigerator.
if you are not comfortable with an animal who jumps and climbs then maybe consider getting a dog rather than a cat.
In the wild cats will jump up high to hide from and observe their prey before they go in for the kill, this provides a safe space where they can stalk their prey. They will also hide in trees to avoid larger predators that they may be at risk from.
Cats can also jump up high and proudly sit in their place as a sign of status. The most dominant cat in the home is often the cat who sits in the highest point. It can make them feel powerful while they look down on their servants below them! Yes, cats can be little snobs at times!
Reasons You May Not Want Your Maine Coon On Your Kitchen Counter
The choice of whether you allow your cats onto your kitchen counter is up to you!
I have never had a problem with it and my cats generally have free roam of my house. It works for me because one of my cats is very greedy when it comes to food so he is fed on the floor and my other cat is fed from on top of the refrigerator and she needs to jump up onto the kitchen side to reach her food.
This post is not just about my opinion though and there are some reasons you may want to keep your cat off your kitchen surfaces –
It can be unhygienic –
Your cat may go into the litterbox and spread traces of poop from their feet onto the kitchen counter and spread bacteria to these areas. I am a little bit OCD with cleaning and always wipe any surface fully clean before I prepare any food on it so as long as you keep up with hygiene practices this shouldn’t be an issue.
They may jump onto the stove and burn themselves –
This is, unfortunately, quite common, especially with electric stoves. One of my cats did this a few years ago and I never forgave myself. I had been cooking and he had jumped onto the hot stove and burned his paw pad. I didn’t realise until he was hopping around the next day. I took him to the vets where he needed an antibiotic and painkilling injection.
Please always cover up the hot stove with a pan of cold water after using it!
They may eat rotten foods that have been left out –
Again this can be a problem for some people but again just make sure that any food scraps or sharp bones are put inside the bin rather than being left out on the counter.
How Do I Get My Maine Coon Cat To Not Jump Onto Kitchen Counters?
So now we know why cats jump onto counters and the potential risks of allowing them to.
If you decide you want to stop your cats from jumping onto the counters then there are a few ways you can go about this.
Cats not only hate the feel of aluminium foil but they dislike the sound it makes too when they walk over it.
A lot of cat owners have success with this method of keeping their cats from jumping onto surfaces. Just lay the foil onto the surface and maybe try to stick it down with some blue tack and your cat will not be impressed.
It will only be a matter of time before they associate the kitchen countertop with that nasty shiny foil! You may also wish to try using sandpaper too.
Cat deterrent sprays
Some sprays keep your cat off surfaces and a lot of the time these sprays contain essential oils that your cat dislikes such as bitter apple or anything with a citrus smell.
These scents although fresh and nice to humans are vile to your Maine coon and can be a good way to keep them off the kitchen surfaces.
However please make sure that they contain ingredients that are safe for your feline friends.
The one I recommend is this 3 in 1 cat spray! It is safe and 10x the strength – it smells lovely and fresh to us but it may just be the thing that keeps your cat off the surfaces! – Click the image below to take a look on Amazon!
Motion-activated Spray can
Let’s say you don’t want your surfaces smelling of oranges and lemons all day and you don’t want Aliminium foil all over your countertops! What can you do instead?
Here comes the PetSafe Motion-activated pet deterrent, if you have never seen these then you need to check them out.
Just place it on the surface you don’t want your cat to be and if they go within 3 feet it releases an odourless and safe fine spray that will keep your cat off the surface. They are effective and worth every penny in my opinion –
Provide alternative places that they can jump up onto
Whenever you take away something from your cat you want to replace it with something they can use instead.
You also want to make sure you reward your cat when they do what you want them to. Maybe they are curious and just want to watch you in the kitchen so when they have learned that they need to keep off the kitchen counters you could place a cat tree nearby.
When they jump onto the cat tree give them as much positive reinforcement as possible by offering treats to build up a positive association with climbing on these objects.
It is also a good idea to provide wall mounted cat shelves for your cat that run around your home thus providing enough vertical space for your Maine coons.
This is the cat tree I use – Click here to take a look!
Ever seen wall-mounted cat furniture? Check out this selection by clicking here! Easy to assemble and will keep your cats entertained for HOURS!
Check out this video on Youtube by the Cat Daddy Jackson Galaxy on the importance of ”Catifying” your home and how to do this easily when living in an apartment!
What not to do?
What you don’t want to do is shout, yell or worse be physical with your Maine coon for jumping onto the kitchen counters.
You can say a firm ”No” while they are on the counter and remove them but getting angry with your cat will just teach them to become scared of you and that’s the last thing you want.
Can You Train A Maine Coon Cat Not To Jump On Furniture?
You can train your cat not to jump on furniture in the same way you teach them not to jump on the kitchen countertops.
It is best to begin this training when your Maine coon is young and the best way is to simply say ”No” firmly when they jump on the furniture and remove them straight away.
Be consistent with this and make sure that every time they are on the furniture you remove them from the situation as you don’t want to allow them to do this one time and then punish them another time as they will get mixed messages and likely become stressed and anxious.
You can use double-sided sticky tape on furniture to keep your cats away, it is very similar to kitchen foil and cats hate anything shiny or sticky.
I think it’s more important to ask yourself why your cat is jumping on the furniture? Do they get a good view from on top of the sofa? Are they craving to have vertical space in the home? If so make sure you have enough cat trees and alternative areas in the home your Maine coon can climb up onto.
Another one of my ultimate favourite pieces of cat furniture is window hammocks for cats!
In my opinion, these are a necessity if you have indoor cats. This will not only give them something to jump up onto but they can observe the birds and wildlife outdoors and hunt with their mind!
Key Takeaways: Do Maine Coon Cats Jump On Kitchen Counters?
- Maine coon cats are keen jumpers and climbers
- You can train your cat to keep on kitchen counters
- Try tin foil on your kitchen surfaces
- Citrus oil sprays will keep your cat off kitchen surfaces and they smell nice too
- Be consistent with training
- Make sure you design your home with your cat in mind and provide places, where they can jump up onto cat trees and wall-mounted shelves
As always take care of yourself and your little fur babies!
Mark (The Crazy Cat Man)