Pets.ca - Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 

-->

cat biting

lilvarn
May 23rd, 2005, 01:09 PM
My cat has this little problem...he likes to bite me...my right leg specifically. I don't do anything to provoke it, usualy at random. He does break the skin and I have several marks already form previous bites. I've tried to thump him on the nose, but that just makes him angry and he really bites me. He hasn't really bitten anyone else, yet, but I'm afraid he might. Getting rid of him is NOT and option...a friend suggested having his canine teeth removed...he is an indoor cat, so he doesn't need them for defense...is this a cruel thing to do? Do vets do this procedure in situations like this? I don't know what to do at this point?

Lucky Rescue
May 23rd, 2005, 02:40 PM
I've tried to thump him on the nose, but that just makes him angry and he really bites me.
Now you see why punishing and hitting cats does not work. Please don't do that any more. You will have to undo the damage you've done by this before working on the problem.

We need more information. How old is your cat? How long have you had him? Is he an indoor cat? Neutered? Do you have other pets? Any stray cats hanging around your house where your cat might see or smell them?

CyberKitten
May 23rd, 2005, 03:09 PM
Cats NEED their teeth!! How will your kitty eat if you do such a cruel thing? <Shudder> Sorry - I was just amazed that anyone would recommend such a thing to you!! I agree with lucky - need more info and NEVER hit a cat! That don't get it and they just become afraid of you. Most of all, it hurts them!

lilvarn
May 23rd, 2005, 04:48 PM
You people make me sound like I beat the crap out of my cat. I simply said I thump...I don't smack him across the room or anything. Rocco is 2...I have had him all but about 2 months of his life. I love him as if he was my kid. He is neutered, front de-clawed. Small dog in the house as well. Possibility of strays wondering around outside the complex. As far as getting rid of the teeth, it would just be the canines...not all his teeth...I'm not a cruel person and I am offended at the inference to that.

levimh
May 23rd, 2005, 04:58 PM
It doesn't seem like a cat would just bite you - or anyone. Has he seen a vet lately? Do you wear a certain scent that maybe the cat might not like? Maybe he thinks you're playing with him, when he bites you? My cat used to grab my feet when I was in bed, but I'd wiggle them around on purpose for her.

chico2
May 23rd, 2005, 05:00 PM
Don't be offended,but honestly,the biting might stem from him being declawed..also if you remove his canines,what else are you go to remove... :confused:
He scratches you remove his claws,he bites,you remove his teeth...
Please don't,declawing was bad enough!!
Also,what he might be doing is a"love-bite"showing you he wants attention.One of my cats(Chico,has all his claws)) does that if I stop petting him,I just go"ouch!!"and he'll stop.It depends what kind of biting you are talking about,if he attacks,it could very well be he's angry at a cat outside.
But if he lays close to you and all of sudden bites,it probably means he wants attention.Just say a loud"Ouch"and No and pull back,he'll get the message,it worked with my Chico..

lilvarn
May 23rd, 2005, 05:03 PM
As I said in the first post...he bites unprovoked. I could just be standing in the kitchen minding my own business, and he will come up behind me, bite my leg and walk away. If I react, just yelping in pain or surprise, he gives me this glare and then procedes to attack again.

levimh
May 23rd, 2005, 05:11 PM
Maybe he's secretly a fashion consultant and doesn't like your fashion choices. :D

lilvarn
May 23rd, 2005, 05:22 PM
Im being serious...I would appreciate serious input.

Sneaky2006
May 23rd, 2005, 05:29 PM
You are getting serious input, relax.
I also think he's biting because he has no claws. My sister's cat did the same thing and he was declawed too. Cats claws are their defense, take them away and you get biting instead. Please don't remove his teeth, whether or not he needs them to eat isn't the issue, the issue is cats have claws AND teeth for a reason.

JDG
May 23rd, 2005, 05:40 PM
unprovoked you say? hummm. . . .

I've never had a cat that just randomly attacked me or my family. Of course, we've never declawed any of them either. . . I agree with Chico that the declawing might be a factor.

Also, why did you hit your cat, a small thump or not?? . . . I'm kinda not surprised that Rocco took a bit out of you if you retaliate to his behaviours like that. Whats that old saying. . .'you catch more flies with honey than you do vinegar'. . .You need to praise Rocco for good behaviours, and give a simple verbal scold for bad behaviour.

We have found with our new kittens we need to be consistant with what we use to 'scold' them. We use 'NOOOOO' in a stern voice. If they jump on the kitchen table or chairs (which is an off limits place) we say 'NOOOOO'. . .we dont say 'down' or 'off' or something - we only use 'NOOOOO'

Marty and Minou our little kittens are very well behaved, they understand when they are being bad - but we are big praisers when they are good. I think alot of the reason they are so well behaved is down to a very social, loving foster home. . .

---------------------------------

Is this a new behaviour or soemthing Rocco has done for all his life??

If its new, what has recently changed in your house?? Are you feeding Rocco something different, have you moved something - like his litter box, is there someone new in your life (and thus his)?? Have you just moved?

chico2
May 23rd, 2005, 05:43 PM
Seriously,no claws,no canines....what you will then have,is a totally defense-less cat,actually no more a cat in the true sense :sad:
Please do not even consider removing his teeth,re-homing him would be better,at least for him....just the thought of pulling his canines horrifies me and should you to if you love your cat.

levimh
May 23rd, 2005, 05:47 PM
Sorry about my previous post. I was just trying to lighten things up.

I agree with JDG though. If you use the word "No", in a firm, low voice then your cat might start responding to it. My male cat chases my female cat from time to time and he knows he's not supposed to. When he does, I'll say "nooo" and he'll shrink down like a dog does and then just walk away.

lilvarn
May 23rd, 2005, 05:55 PM
I've tried the stern "NO"...that doesn't work. I was told that a thump on the nose isn't terrible. You people make me feel like a terrible person for front de-clawing him. Next you're gonna yell at me for nuetering him!!! I would NEVER do anything to intentionally hurt my cat!!! Please don't patronize me!!! I was looking for advice...not criticism. I'll go elsewhere.

Safyre
May 23rd, 2005, 06:16 PM
lilvarn - I'm sorry that you're getting jumped on this forum. Ppl on this website are VERY against declawing, in any sense, for any reason. They will not yell at your for neurtering, as all on this website are for spay/nuetering.
I have had declawed animals all my life, and have never had behavioural problems with them.

What it sounds like, to me, is that he is just trying to get your attention. What do you normally do when he bites the back of your leg? Is he just walking up, nipping your leg, and then walking away? Is he GRABBING your leg with his paws, trying to bunny kick it and bite? If you would prefer, you can PM me.

badger
May 23rd, 2005, 06:28 PM
If you go away now, you may miss out on some really good ideas, or at least, some things you can try.
Does this happen often? Does he come looking for you, as if you were prey?
When he does it, lean down, look him right in the eye, and say NO. Then put him in another room for a time out.
Maybe he wants to play? I admit that it's a poor opener.
If you give him catnip, stop. In my experience, some cats go loco on the weed.
I do know a few declawed cats who tend to be biters but I'm not sure if there's a connection.
If there's nothing medically wrong with him that would cause aggression, you may just have a feisty cat. I imagine you avoid him because of it and maybe he picks up on that. When a cat is aggressive with me, I get in their face as much as possible, in a tender way, so that they know I'm not a threat (not in the moment, of course, but later, when they're not biting).
Does it happen when you've been playing or snuggling with the dog? Could be deferred aggression (ie he'd like to bite the dog but you're less of a threat)?

mona_b
May 23rd, 2005, 06:29 PM
I have a cat who also bites.And yes he will attack for no reason.You can walk past Casper and he will go after you.You can also have him in your lap,pet him,and he will turn and attack.He did this when he was a kitten.I'm sure LR and chico remember me asking what to do about this situation with Casper when he was younger.And no he is not declawed,he is deaf though.He is not as bad since we adopted a little sister for him.He will still do it at times.Hubby did(I gave him crap) tap him on the nose,but that pissed Casper off even more.Trust me,hubby never did it again.Remember,I am dealing with a deaf cat,which is harder then a hearing cat.


lilvarn,please don't thump him.It will only make matters worse.As you have already stated..And PLEASE don't even think of taking out his canine.That is wat to cruel.And to be honest,I know of no vet who would even consider this.

CyberKitten
May 23rd, 2005, 06:29 PM
Without exception, nearly every declawed cat I have ever met became a biter at some point in their lives. As you probably know, declawing is such a cruel process and takes away the primary protection a cat has so they often resort to biting. It's sad but a result of declawing. That may not be the cause here but it certainly would not help. And I am VERY serious!!!!!! I admit I do not understand why anyone would declaw a cat but won't judge you - it is possible you adopted the kitty already declawed (even tho declawed cats are the first brought in to shelters and also sometimes hrad to adopt so good for you if that is the case!)

Many declawed cats bite even in play - which means they need to learn how to play all over again. Maybe it is attention seeking as well if you are away alot or there are significant changes in the cat's life?

Lucky Rescue
May 23rd, 2005, 06:30 PM
This is not really unusual behavior in young tom cats, and yes, many declawed cats will resort to biting.

At 2 years old, he has a lot of energy and needs some way to discharge it.

I just fostered a young tom who would launch himself at arms and legs, not because he is bad but because of the energy thing. He went to a home with other cats and is fine now.

Get him some new toys, catnip, a "Kitty Tease" a climbing tree or whatever else he may like. This problem is more often seen in "only" cats which is why having 2 cats is a good idea. They can give each other a workout that no human can.

You've already deprived him of his claws - to pull out his teeth is unthinkably inhumane and will cause him further stress and pain. If you are going to remove all his defenses it would better to find him another home with someone who is willing to work with him and not chop off body parts as a quick fix..

april21h1
May 23rd, 2005, 06:52 PM
My cat honey would attack my BF's feet whenever he would walk by her or when he was getting up from the bed. It stopped when we got her a friend to play with her.

lilvarn
May 23rd, 2005, 07:07 PM
when he initially bites me I do say "NO" very sternly...but then he gets this glare in his eye, cocks his head, and tries to attack me again. When I try to grab him to get him off...he latches on to my arm and starting biting me there and doing the "bunny kicking" You should see my arms and legs...I look like I walked into a barbed wire fence. Yes, he just walks up and does it...no warning, no provocation. I wondered if it was him trying to get my attention, but I give him as much as I can...when he lets me. The vet said it's a love bite, but the look he gets on his face doesn't look very loving. I don't know what to do...I love him to death, but this has got to stop. Thanks for being a little more understanding than the rest of these people. And for the record...someone else outside of this forum suggested the removal of the teeth...it was not my idea...I thought it was a cruel idea as well...but I think I am so desperate for a solution...I was crazy enough to consider it for a moment. I love my "little Roc" and I just want to feel he loves me too.

Lucky Rescue
May 23rd, 2005, 07:46 PM
but then he gets this glare in his eye, cocks his head, and tries to attack me again. When I try to grab him to get him off...he latches on to my arm and starting biting me there and doing the "bunny kicking"

I know exactly what you mean. I know it's VERY hard, but do not struggle or try and push him off, or pull your arm away when he does this as it will encourage him to bite even harder.

As I said, I did just deal with this with a foster of mine. You can see by his pic he had the "devil" in him as well, although he was not vicious at all. I call it the "naughty boy" syndrome.

What I did when I could see him "revving up" for an attack was to freeze and say "AH AH!!!!!" in a deep low voice and NOT move even when he grabbed my arm. He would then let go, since it was no challenge or fun and I would get up and walk away. When he was nice, I would pet him, but only until I see he was becoming agitated again - tail twitching, rippling fur etc.

Again, this is not uncommon with young toms who dont' have enough outlet for energy. Try the toys and the catnip. Play with him until he's tired.You might even try Rescue Remedy just to "take the edge off".

Here is Tim the Attacker.:p

lilvarn
May 23rd, 2005, 08:18 PM
Where did you get that cat!!!! He is the spitting image of my Rocco!!! That's erie and that is the exact look he gets when he is about to attack. I'll try what you have suggested and see what happens...Thanks for the advice, I feel a bit better now!!!

Lucky Rescue
May 23rd, 2005, 08:50 PM
The cat in the pic was dumped on the street. We feared we would never find him a home because of his naughtiness, (and he's a big boy!) but after having him in my home for two weeks and working with him, he did improve a lot and is now in a loving home with a bunch of other cats. His attacks have now stopped since running playing with the other cats uses up his energy.

Persistance and patience work. No yelling, arm waving and no hitting, since these have the opposite of the desired effect. You want him to learn that attacking you is just a big bore since you don't react at all.

chico2
May 24th, 2005, 08:19 AM
Lillvarn..see,now the tone is better,once we eliminated the threat of pulling teeth :eek:
There can be many explainations why he is doing what he's doing.
I believe boredom can be one,he's still very young,not much more than a kitten and since he cannot grab you with his claws,will bite.
How does he react to your little dog,do they play???
Does he get jealous??A jealous cat,will do anything to get attention..
My 3yr-old Vinnie,will wrestle with my 10yr-old Rocky,they chase each other and have a great time,getting rid of all that energy.
I've been seriously attacked twice by my Rocky,because of outside cats,I came on this Forum and got help,mainly from Lucky and have been here ever since :D
I know now what to look for,to prevent another attack..
You'll have to work on Rocco,give him some extra time,play with him..buy a Laser pointer,an easy way to work off excess energy :D
I am assuming he's already neutered and no,neutering is not cruel,it is essential!
Whoever suggested removing his canines,is obviously not a cat-lover or animal-lover,period...
Let us know how you and Rocco are doing,I am sure with time and help you can stop this behaviour.

JDG
May 24th, 2005, 09:20 AM
Is this a new behaviour or soemthing Rocco has done for all his life??

If its new, what has recently changed in your house?? Are you feeding Rocco something different, have you moved something - like his litter box, is there someone new in your life (and thus his)?? Have you just moved?

I'm still curious if this is a new thing? Did you change something in Rocco's routine???



(I just realised I quoted myself hahaha, too funny)

CyberKitten
May 24th, 2005, 12:19 PM
Oh wow JDG, quoting yourself - :) I've done worse tho, lol

I think this kitty just needs lots of time and energy which since you love him should not be a tough diagnosis! Other than being neutered, he needs all his body parts! I really feel for declawed cats and I won't belabour the point but they need more attention and often become insecure so need much love and reassurance. Hitting will create the opposite effect of that but if you can redirect his energy somehow, he really should be fine! If he thinks it's OK, he will continue to do it. Ignoring him when he does it is the best advice! And then playing with him and giving him lots of praise when he plays nicely!

lilvarn
May 25th, 2005, 08:48 AM
Thanks everyone for the input. Enough on the de-claw issue...I get it, ok! As for change...yes, we did just recently move from a house with 2 other cats to an apartment with a small dog that isn't as playful. I agree that probably has something to do with it. I wish I could bring in another cat, but in our current living situation, it is not possible. I have been trying to play with him more the last few nights when I get home from work...getting down on his level as you said. I'll keep this up and let y'all know how it goes. :thumbs up PS...what is Rescue Remedy???

Lucky Rescue
May 25th, 2005, 10:06 AM
All these changes have no doubt stressed your cat. Rescue Remedy is a natural calming substance made from flower essences and has no side effects.

Not sure where to get it where you are , but you can get it online.
http://www.naturallydirect.net/rescue-remedy.htm

chico2
May 25th, 2005, 05:40 PM
lilvarn,that explains a lot of things,cats hate changes,he is more than likely very stressed,insecure and unhappy,something like Rescue Remedy,as Lucky suggested would calm him down somewhat.Good Luck!!

JessXx
May 26th, 2005, 12:50 AM
Hi, I think its 'cause you have the cat de-clawed and hes trying to play with you possibly... but other than that I have no clue.
I just want to say that I'm offended a bit by the way you are reffering to us... you say "you people" and "these people." I am infact one of 'these people' I only want to help you. I dont want to be placed in a category with rude people and I noticed that not all the people that had tried to help you said anything offencive at all.
I do, however understand how you feel. Its understandable that you'd be upset at people jumping on you for something unrelated to the topic. But please choose your words more carefully next time.
Thanks :)