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-   -   Kitten will not stop biting and scratching (http://www.pets.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=74242)

Raiee2010 December 27th, 2010 11:33 PM

Kitten will not stop biting and scratching
 
hello ,
i have a 16 week old kitten who will not stop biting and scratching,.. we have had him since he has been 6 weeks old.. and he has been doing it since.. he will not stop no matter what we do i always try distracting him , but it dosent seem to work , and i dont like hiting him like some poeple tell me to do .. BUT... the odd thing is when its just me and him he is fine and his daddy lol ( my boyfriend) gets home he acts out with the biting and scrtaching , he jumps on your arm and wraps his paws around it... im not sure what to do to make him stop , but any help would be great my arms look crazy from him..

sugarcatmom December 28th, 2010 12:21 AM

[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973089] we have had him since he has been 6 weeks old..[/quote]
:( Why did you get him when he was only 6 weeks? Kittens should stay with their momma and siblings until 10-12 weeks. That's how they learn about bite inhibition and other vital socialization skills.

[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973089] and i dont like hiting him like some poeple tell me to do .. [/quote]

Don't ever hit your kitten. Whoever is telling you to do this needs to give themselves a smack. This will only cause your kitten to mistrust you and won't teach him a thing about controlling his teeth and claws. Could even make him worse.

[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973089] he jumps on your arm and wraps his paws around it... im not sure what to do to make him stop , but any help would be great my arms look crazy from him..[/QUOTE]

He's playing. That's what kittens do. If he had a sibling or playmate his age to do this with instead of your arms, it wouldn't be such an issue. Any way you can get another kitten for him to hang out with? 2 are better than one, and he won't be lonely when you're not at home.

pattymac December 28th, 2010 12:58 AM

I agree totally with Sugarcat, biting and grabbing is totally normal and had kitty been left with littermates a few more weeks, he would likely not be so bitey and grabby with the claws. I may have the same issue with the kitten I picked up as a stray. Don't know how long she got to stay with mom but right now she's pretty gentle and while she'll hold with her paws, her bites are more like little nibbles. If you can find your kitten a decent sized stuffed mouse that he can grab and hold onto to kick and bite that should help. When he starts getting a bit rangy, give him that to bite.

I also agree with the 2nd kitten...they're so much more fun when they have a playmate.

Love4himies December 28th, 2010 08:34 AM

I agree with Sugarcatmom. This kitten was taken away from his siblings and momma much too early and he is just playing like kittens play.

Is your BF 100% consistent with the rules of NO PLAYING with the hands/feet, etc? Are you gentle with him when you are telling him NO and distracting him with a toy? Does he have a toy that is big enough for him to wrap his legs around and bunny kick?

Please no hitting, that can teach him that it is OK to play rough or if the hitting is hard, he will not trust you. A second kitten the same age would certainly help out in socializing him.

14+kitties December 28th, 2010 12:08 PM

[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973089]hello ,
daddy lol ( my boyfriend) gets home he acts out with the biting and scrtaching , he jumps on your arm and wraps his paws around it... im not sure what to do to make him stop , but any help would be great my arms look crazy from him..[/QUOTE]

I would venture to say it's been your bf that the kitten has learned how to play with. He probably allowed it when the kitten was tiny. Now kitty is getting bigger he wants it to stop. It's fair game when the "big cat" is home.
As the others have already pointed out - 6 weeks is way too young to be taken from mom and siblings. From the time they are tiny until they are around 3 months mom is teaching them valuable lessons on survival and socialization. Their siblings are teaching them, and each other, how to play but not too roughly. I have a family right now who never try anything rough with me. With their siblings they do but they know their limitations. I also have a kitty who was found by himself and brought to me when he was a tiny little gaffer. He is quite rough with his biting when he decides he wants to play. He also shares my food with me but that's a different story. :D
The best thing to do when the kitten starts misbehaving is to say a sharp NO or respond the way a playmate would - by meowing - and redirect to a large stuffie. You should always make sure there is a stuffie close by when you know kitty is going to react to the bf. You have to be 100% consistent. Not 99. Not 98.
A playmate in the same age bracket is always a wonderful thought as well. :thumbs upPlease make sure it is another cat and not a dog. :rolleyes: That opens up it's own set of issues.

Raiee2010 December 28th, 2010 01:44 PM

we got the kitten when he was 6 weeks old because thats when the people we got him from were giving them away , no my fault of him being so young.. and as for him playing this is not playing way he does it to hurt you , and none of this is my bfs fault because he is never with the cat only for a few hours a day i sepdn all day the the kitten and i try and give him rules and he dosent obey.. i tryed the pushing down on the toungue thing and well that didnt work worth **** he bites ever harder

sugarcatmom December 28th, 2010 02:14 PM

[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973179]we got the kitten when he was 6 weeks old because thats when the people we got him from were giving them away , no my fault of him being so young.. [/quote]

You didn't have to take him.

[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973179] i sepdn all day the the kitten and i try and give him rules and he dosent obey..[/quote]

Is this your first cat?

[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973179]i tryed the pushing down on the toungue thing and well that didnt work worth **** he bites ever harder[/QUOTE]

What exactly is the "pushing down on the tongue thing"?

Raiee2010 December 28th, 2010 02:29 PM

well if i didnt take him they were going to get rid of them , meaning make away with the kittens that were left ... and well pushing down the tounge is when they go to bite you ur supose to push down on there tounge to make them stop .. it was on here i was reading it and well no this isnt my first cat i;ve always had kittens and cats and none who have ever been this bad.. all my kittens i got when they were 6 weeks oldd:P

sugarcatmom December 28th, 2010 07:29 PM

[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973183]well if i didnt take him they were going to get rid of them , meaning make away with the kittens that were left ... [/quote]

Huh? So what happened to the other kittens then? I have no idea what "make away with the kittens that were left" means.

[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973183]and well pushing down the tounge is when they go to bite you ur supose to push down on there tounge to make them stop ..[/quote]

I'd advise not doing that. Not only can you cause harm to the cat's mouth, it obviously isn't a technique that's working for you.

[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973183]i;ve always had kittens and cats and none who have ever been this bad.. all my kittens i got when they were 6 weeks oldd:P[/QUOTE]

Where have you been getting all these 6 week old kittens from? And where are they now?

14+kitties December 28th, 2010 11:33 PM

[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973179]we got the kitten when he was 6 weeks old because thats when the people we got him from were giving them away , no my fault of him being so young.. and as for him playing this is not playing way he does it to hurt you , and none of this is my bfs fault because he is never with the cat only for a few hours a day i sepdn all day the the kitten and i try and give him rules and he dosent obey.. i tryed the pushing down on the toungue thing and well that didnt work worth **** he bites ever harder[/QUOTE]

:confused: No one blamed your bf. I believe I said he probably played a little using his hands as toys with the kitten when the kitten was smaller and therefore probably did not help the situation. :shrug:
He is a baby. Most babies need to learn over time. He is also reaching the "brat" stage. Pretty normal kitten behaviour.


[QUOTE=Raiee2010;973183]well if i didnt take him they were going to get rid of them , meaning make away with the kittens that were left ... and well pushing down the tounge is when they go to bite you ur supose to push down on there tounge to make them stop .. it was on here i was reading it and well no this isnt my first cat i;ve always had kittens and cats and none who have ever been this bad.. all my kittens i got when they were 6 weeks oldd:P[/QUOTE]

Unfortunately a lot of people threaten to "get rid of" kittens if no one takes them when [I]they [/I]want them gone. :(
I believe you are right that it was on here you read about someone pushing down the tongue to correct a cat's biting. Unfortunately you can not believe everything you read. I remember that particular thread and also believe that when the OP stated that is what she did there were a few members who told her it was not a great idea. It is painful and is not teaching your kitten to do anything but distrust you.

Raiee2010 December 29th, 2010 10:39 PM

yeah thanks 14 kittens n yeah alot of people say they will get rid of them so i toke him away from them...yeah it was a thread on here...and no its no one plays with him with there hands my bf is rarly here.. i really think he is cutting his teeth but hes getting better now got my own technique i figgured out

marko December 30th, 2010 09:56 AM

I just wanted to add that many people simply don't know that 6 weeks is a bad time to take in a kitten. They think they are doing the cat or themselves a favour, but there's no 'bad intent' going into it, just a lack of general information about cats, backyard breeding etc.

Hopefully [B]others[/B] can now read this thread, learn from it and hopefully not adopt a 6 week old cat, but for this OP it's too late.

In terms of solving your particular problem Raiee2010 one thing I would recommend (if you are doing this at any time) is to immediately stop playing with the cat with your hands and arms as 'toys'. Get actual cat toys from pet stores like a feather on a string or a wand with some toy at the end of it and encourage your cat to play with those. Redirect the cat to those toys instead of hands if possible. You may notice that the interaction of playing with the toy might also be satisfying for the cat.

Good luck.

good luck

MyBirdIsEvil May 12th, 2011 02:11 PM

As far as the 6 week old kitten thing, it's unfortunate, but it's mostly the fault of the people that won't spay or neuter their cats. There are SOOO many cats that need homes and most people give them away at 6 weeks because they want them out asap (i've seen as young as 5 weeks unfortunately), and someone either has to take them, or they go to the pound if the pound even has room, or the kittens are killed.
There are LOTS of people in this area unfortunately that will hit kittens over the head with a hammer or something if they can't find homes and they will tell people so to make them take them. Personally I will not take kittens just because someone threatened to "do away" with them. The fact is, a lot of cats get euthanized even if they are taken to the pound instead, or in the long run even if someone takes them home because they cannot properly deal with an unsocialized 6 week old kitten, so they take them to the pound where they are now unadoptable adults.
I cannot fault someone for taking a 6 week old kitten from an irresponsible owner, unless it is a pure bred and the owner was breeding for profit (in this case people not buying so young would more likely cause them release them later). But most irresponsible owners are simply not spaying or neutering, and whether the person takes them at 6 weeks, is not going to make a difference because the owners just want the cats GONE and will take them to the pound or kill them anyway at 6 weeks if no one claims them.

As far as the cat biting, I think good advice has already been offered, but it's kind of hard to offer great advice without seeing the cat biting and being able to tell if it's strictly just rough play, or it's acting out in some other manner. Obviously the roughness should be discouraged, and IMO the best way is to sit the cat on the ground and ignore it. Only give attention when it behaves appropriately. Even give treats when the cat is behaving calmly. Punishments like pressing on the tongue, hitting, yelling, etc., may either cause distrust, or will actually make the cat think you are playing and soliciting even more rough treatment, so those are a no no.
When you see two kittens playing, you will notice if one is not happy with the behavior they will back off, hiss and avoid. If a kitten bites harder and grabs at the other cat it will often solicit, and is often meant to, an even rougher attack from the other kitten. It says "Oh you wanna play rough! Ok we'll play rough!"
In some cases the opposing cat may get on top of or hold down the rough kitten until they submit, but I don't suggest people try this because they don't generally go about it in the correct manner.
I'm very physical with my kittens (I don't mean by hitting - I mean by handling, play, etc.) in order to teach behavior and boundaries, but I don't do it in a negative manner and a lot of it is actually a trust building thing. I cannot suggest physical means to others to correct their cats, even if it works for me, because I cannot trust the owner to behave properly, gently enough, or for them to have built trust and respect in their kittens prior to using the tactics (and don't misunderstand, I'm never rough or physically hurtful - whereas many people, especially those that are frustrated, may go overboard and not realize it). That's why I think when someone suggests physical means to controlling behavior, even if they are experienced and it has worked for them, often it goes wrong, because there are different dynamics between each owner and cat and differing personalities in each animal (and that actually goes for animals other than cats too). If someone came to my house and handled my cats in the same manner I do there's a good chance it would actually scare them or cause an aggressive reaction because they don't have the same level of trust with that person.
Cats do not build trust and bonds easily, but many of them DO sever bonds and trust easily, so the wrong physical correction can have dire consequences for your relationship.
Point is, if someone suggests physical aversionary tactics like hitting, pressing on tongue, etc., or even more benign things like holding the cat down, they most likely are giving advice that either doesn't work, or don't understand that not all cats and people are the same. Best to stick to advice that is positive reinforcement based.
Oh and I think it's important to keep frustration levels as low as possible. I NEVER get frustrated with my cats (hard to believe, but there's a reason I like raising kittens :p), though they do sometimes do things that make me go "What the heck are you doing?". Reason being when humans get frusted they generally act out in a negative manner that cats don't understand. Cats are much more body language oriented than humans, and even other domestic pets like dogs, and our body language and behavior while frustrated often comes off as aggressive, dangerous, or challenging. So try to keep a happy and relaxed demeanor around your cat. It will go a much longer way than anger or lashing out. If a cat does something you dislike, don't get angry as if they were being malicious, try to understand why the behavior occurred and correct it in a way THEY can understand.


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