Cat mom who thinks cats need stimulation as much as dogs do!!
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Hello! We are working towards being able to live in a camper van and travel North America for a year with our cat Posey

Taking away buttons for a bit to travel

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Currently my cat has 8 buttons and is definitely showing signs that she needs more (pressing "snicky snack" when her kibble ball is stuck and she needs help with it, me saying "play later" or "play now" without having a button for "now", etc). My problem is that I am planning on living van life for 1.5 years starting in the fall (hopefully, depending on covid and borders). Posey will be coming with us as she absolutely loves hiking and living out of the van, however I don't have enough room to add buttons there so am I being a bad pet parent by teaching her these buttons to take them away from her for a while when we travel? I'm worried that giving her more words and then taking them all away on our trip is going to frustrate her. Thoughts on how I should navigate this?Β 
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Allowing space for multiple button presses

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Up until this point I have responded immediately when my cat pushes a button. I wanted to reward her right away so she understood that the button she pressed received that reward. Recently I've noticed that if I am a little slower in responding (busy at a task, in a meeting, etc) she then will use multiple buttons or else press the same button! So I think by me immediately responding to the button press I had stifled her need to create a sequence, but with a little bit of room she now will say things like "outside play" or "play lemon" "outside walk" etc. And if she really wants just one button she will press it again (and again and again and again) until I respond. Once she started doing this I also noticed that she will respond to things I say with buttons. This is the conversation we had today that blew my mind:
cat: choo choo (means training so she has to do a trick and receives a treat)
me: choo choo all done (I take the certain number of treats she's allowed in a day and when she uses them all up whether its 9 am or 9 pm then she is all done for that day)
cat: choo choo all done
me: yes, choo choo all done!Β 
cat: pauses with paw on choo choo button, then leaves to go lay in the sun (insert mind blown emoji here!!)Β 
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Presses button and then walks away/ignores me

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My cat consistency uses outside and play buttons, but lately she has started pressing the button and walking away. She started with "play" and then wouldn't engage in play but would walk away to a different room all together and ignore me. I thought it meant she was bored with her toys and I needed to buy some new ones to keep her engaged. Now she started doing it with "outside". She will go press the button and then walk away to a different room like she doesn't actually want to go outside. I'm not sure what this means but she does it often! I was thinking she wants attention but doesn't have a button that works with what she wants at the moment and this one gives her immediate attention? Any other thoughts or ideas. She still using the buttons for their intended purposes, when she wants to go outside she presses it and stays by the door waiting for me to let her out.Β 

List of words to add

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I swear there was a list of word ideas to add in a certain order on this website, but I can't seem to find it! I just received 4 more buttons and am not sure if I want to do "help" "momma" "food" or really what to go with next. Anyone know where that list is? I currently have "outside" "play" "all done" "lemon" (her favourite toy)
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Posey (Marissa)

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Learner Name: Posey

3 years

Teacher Name:

Started Learning Word Buttons:

Number of Words
: 8

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  • Outside
  • Play
  • All done
  • Lemon (her favourite catnip filled toy)
  • Choo Choo (means Training where she has to do a trick for a treat)
  • Snicky Snack (we feed her small amounts multiple times a day - when the food runs out for that day it's all done)
  • Walk
  • Attention


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