How to keep cats from going upstairs? A step-by-step guide to prevent upstairs mischief.

You won’t believe what these cats are up to! They are the cutest and fluffiest things ever and will melt your heart with their adorable faces and funny tricks.

But sometimes, they can be a handful. They love to get into trouble and do things they are not supposed to do, like sneaking upstairs when you’re not looking. I mean, what is it about those stairs that are so darn enticing to them?

Whatever the reason, you might be wondering how to keep cats from going upstairs, without hurting their feelings or causing them stress.

Well, you are in luck, because we have some tips and tricks that will help you create a cat-free zone upstairs without making your kitty feel unwelcome. Read on to find out how!

Why Cats likes the high Life: The upstairs behavior

Hey, do you know what your cat is up to when you’re not around? Chances are, they are heading upstairs to find a cozy spot to nap, spy on the neighbors, or just enjoy the view. Cats are drawn to high places for many reasons, and it’s not just because they think they are the king of your housey world.

  1.  First of all, cats are natural climbers and explorers who love to check out new places and heights. They have a strong curious and adventurous spirit like Dora the Explorer but in a cat version, and this makes them want to see what’s up there, even if it means breaking some rules.
  1. But there’s more. Cats also seek high places for safety and comfort. They can avoid any unwanted interactions with other pets, or humans who might bother them or invade their space.
  1. Another reason cats love upstairs is they can survey their domain from the top. Like a watch tower, they can watch over their territory from a bird’s eye view and spot any potential threats or prey. Being up high also gives them a sense of superiority and confidence – as they feel like a majestic king Mufasa from “The Lion King”.

However, before you give your cat the keys to the upstairs, you should know that there are some serious risks involved that could hurt them or ruin your stuff.

For instance, your cat could take a tumble from a window or balcony, climb to the roof, end up trapped in a closet or drawer, or smash some precious items. Trust me, you don’t want to deal with that mess. That’s why you need to keep your cats from going upstairs, which we’re going to discuss in the next section.

How to keep your cats from going upstairs

You know how cats are, right? They’re always fun-loving, adventurous, and have a little detective mind to explore new things. Well, that’s fine and dandy, but sometimes they can get into trouble, especially when they go upstairs.

You don’t want them to scratch your bed, knock over your favorite vase, or shed their silky fur all over your clothes. You want to keep your cats from going up. But how do you do that? Well, I have tips for you that might help. 

  1. Make downstairs more appealing: You know how they say the grass is always greener on the other side? Well, that’s how your cats feel about upstairs. They think there’s something more interesting or fun up there. So, make the downstairs a cat paradise. Give them lots of toys, cozy beds, treats, food, and other things. It’ll make them busy and they won’t look at the stairs.   
  1. Motion detectors to the rescue: This is a sneaky trick that might scare your cats away from the stairs. Buy a motion detector that makes a noise or sprays water when it senses movement. Put it near the stairs. When your cats try to go upstairs, they’ll be greeted by an unpleasant surprise.  
  1. Use cat repellent spray on stairs: Cats have noses like bloodhounds. Spray some cat repellent on the staircase. It has a strong smell that cats hate the most, like citrus, vinegar, or peppermint. If you want to make a homemade cat repellent then watch this video How to make DIY cat repellent
  1. Shiny and distracting aluminum foil: Cats dislike the sound and feel of aluminum foil. It’s like nails on a chalkboard for them. Cut some foil and tape it to the stairs. It will make them uncomfortable, nervous, and your cat will run away from the stairs. 
  1. Use physical barriers or gates: Sometimes, the simplest solution is the best one. You can use a physical barrier or gate to block the access upstairs. You can use a baby gate or pet gate that fits your staircase. Moreover, you can make your own barrier with some cardboard, wood, or mesh. Make sure it’s sturdy and high enough that your cats can’t jump over or knock it over.   
  1. Sticky double-sided tape on the stairs: Cats don’t like anything that sticks to their fur or paws. So, you can use sticky double tape to discourage them from going up. Put it at the bottom or top of the stairs and secure it well. Your cats won’t be able to go upstairs unless you open it for them.
  1. Booby-traps to limit upstairs access: This is a fun and creative way to keep your cats from going upstairs. You can put some booby-traps on the stairs that will make your cats think twice before exploring upstairs. For example, put balloons, cups of water, or bells on the stairs that will pop, spill or ring when your cats touch them.   

How to train your cats from going upstairs 

Cats are great, but not upstairs. You might be wondering if cats can be trained to not go upstairs. Well, yes you can. Some people think that cats are not easy to train, but with patience, anything is possible. Here’s how to train your cats to stay downstairs in a few easy steps, and show them who’s the boss!

  • Discover your cat’s favorite treats: You’ll need some yummy treats to bribe your cat to stay downstairs. Tuna, chicken, cheese, catnip? Get some of those goodies, but not too much. You don’t want your cat to get fat and sick. And let’s be real, who doesn’t love a good bribe every now and then?
  • Get a clicker and make some noise: Next up, you gotta start clicker training those little furballs. Trust me, it’s a game changer! Once your cats associate the sound of the clicker with positive behavior, you can start teaching them anything, like staying downstairs. It’s like magic! As Harry Potter said, “Accio kitty!”
  • Teach your cat to sit and stay: Speaking of tricks, you need to teach your cats to sit and stay, if you want them to stay put downstairs. Hold a treat above their head and move it back until they sit. It might take lotta treats, but it’s totally worth it in the end.

[Click this link and learn how to teach your cat to Sit and Stay with clicker training]  

  • Be nice to your cat when they stay downstairs: Remember to use positive reinforcement when your cats do listen and stay downstairs. A little praise, or some extra cuddles, will go a long way in keeping them happy and obedient.  
  • Be patient and consistent: Training your curious cat may take a lot of time and work, but don’t lose your cool! Sometimes you will feel frustrated, but remember consistency is the key. Keep at it, and you will have those kitties staying put in no time. And by the way, you know how smart cats are! They can learn with practice and reward, so be patient!   

What to do if your cats keep ascending the stairs

 Oh no, it looks like your cats just can’t resist the allure of the upstairs, especially when you have tried everything to keep them downstairs.

Well, now it’s a matter of concern. So, what to do if they keep ascending the stairs despite having downstairs heaven. Here are some things you can do:

Firstly, assess the situation. Find out why your cat is so obsessed with the upstairs. Is it because they have a litter box up there, or they have a furry friend or foe living there?

If that’s the case, you need to make some changes to accommodate your cat’s needs. 

Next, address if there are any underlying issues, whether it’s physical or psychological. Sometimes cats go upstairs to hide from something that disturbs them, like noise, strangers, or other stressors.

They may also have some health issues that make them feel insecure or uncomfortable. So, make sure to check if your cat is feeling okay.  

And finally, seek professional help. If your little cat is still going up no matter what you do, it can be a sign of a deeper problem. If they are facing any behavioral problem or health issue, then you may need to consult with your veterinarian or a cat behaviorist.

They will help you find the root cause of your cat’s upstairs behavior, and provide you with an effective solution. 


So, there you have it. You don’t have to let your cats rule the upstairs of your house. You can teach them to stay downstairs and have a blast there. Just follow our tips and tricks, and you’ll see the results.

Don’t forget to be nice and gentle with your kitties, and reward them when they do what you want. Trust us, it will work. Soon enough, you’ll have a happy and well-behaved cat that stays downstairs.

Now, let’s hear from you! Do you have any other tips and tricks for keeping cats from going upstairs? Share them in the comments below and let’s continue the conversation.

And don’t forget to share this article with your friends, because who knows, they might need to deal with their own stair-loving cat someday.

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