Cats are naturally curious creatures and they often see your home workspace as an extension of their territory.
If you work from home with a cat, you’re probably all too familiar with the feeling of having your computer keyboard jumped on and your workflow interrupted. This can be annoying for you and can also appear unprofessional during video conferencing.
If your cat is constantly bothering you while you are working, let us help! In this blog post, we’ll share tips on how to keep your cat off your keyboard so you can stay productive.
Why Cats Sit on Your Keyboard
The first step to stop your cat jumping on your keyboard is to evaluate and understand why it is happening.
There are a few possible explanations. For one thing, cats are naturally drawn to the movement of your hands typing and the clicking noise your keyboard makes. This can be particularly stimulating for them, especially if they’re bored.
Additionally, some cats simply enjoy being high up off the ground. Since your keyboard is usually one of the highest points in the room, it’s the perfect place for them to perch and survey their kingdom.
Another common reason is that cats like the attention they get from their human companions when they sit close to you and get in the way.
Your cat might be jealous of all the attention you are giving to your computer and not him!
Benefits of Cats in Your Workspace
For many people, working from home can be stressful. There are constant distractions, no colleagues to talk to in person, and it can be difficult to stay focused.
Having a cat around your office can help to reduce stress levels and therefore increase productivity.
Studies have shown that stroking a cat can lower your blood pressure and heart rate, resulting in a feeling of relaxation. The sound of their purring can also have a calming effect.
So while your cat jumping on your keyboard can be frustrating, it is important to remember the benefits your kitty brings to your workplace too.
How to Stop Cats Sitting on Your Keyboard
When your cat first jumps up onto your desk, you will pick it up and move it. But then it will just jump up again.
Instead of repeating this never-ending loop, try our helpful tips on how to stop your cat jumping up onto your workplace.
The simplest solution is to block your cat’s access to your workspace.
If you are in an office or bedroom, you could close the door so your cat cannot walk in. However, they may result in it meowing loudly or scratching at your door.
You could set up a barricade for your keyboard. You can purchase plastic keyboard barriers online however they are not cheap!
They look like a small, clear table that sits over your keyboard and you type underneath it. When your cat goes to jump onto the keyboard, it will land on your barricade instead.
When you are not typing, lock your keyboard or unplug it. This will stop your cat coming in and ruining your work when you step away from your desk.
Offer Somewhere Better to Sit
Your cat may be sitting on your keyboard because it thinks it is the best option in your office.
If you offer your cat a more enticing place to sleep, it will hopefully choose to leave you alone.
Place the new bed or cave in a quiet corner of the room where your cat can relax and won’t be disturbed. Make sure it is situated so your cat can still see you and know you are nearby.
Also consider the position of the sun. If your cat loves to nap in the warmth of sunshine, place the bed in a sunny spot in your office.
Be patient and allow your cat time to adjust to its new bed.
Offer Something Better to Do
Your cat may be annoying you while you work because it is bored or wants attention. To overcome this, distract your cat with something more fun.
To redirect your cats attention, purchase a cat scratching post. Choose one with sisal rope for scratching and lots of interesting features such as hammocks, ladders and tunnels.
You should also provide your kitty with lots of toys. Puzzle toys require your cat to interact with the toy in order to get a treat. While these can be expensive, they will occupy any cat for hours. Laser toys are usually a hit too.
While not impossible, it can be difficult to train cats. You will need to be very patient and consistent.
Cats will not respond to punishment. If you yell at your cat for doing the wrong thing, it will likely ignore you or it may get scared and act out aggressively in defence.
The best approach is positive reinforcement. Every time your cat sits somewhere other than your keyboard, reward it with praise, pats or treats.
Start off with small expectations. At first, reward your cat just for sitting a little bit away from you. Then raise the goal and only reward your cat when it sits in its own bed for more than one minute.
Eventually, your cat will learn which spots you want it to sit and leave your keyboard alone.