Kittens adore playing, but when they get overly enthusiastic, they frequently scratch and bite. Others are wary of these delicate parts, while some kittens don’t mind having any part of their bodies stroked. This is especially true if your kitten is playing with a young child. Fortunately, training kittens can usually stop this habit from occurring.
The Reasons Cats Bite and Scratch
Kittens frequently play-bite and scratch one another. They learn how to play, engage with their siblings socially, and push boundaries in this way. However, sometimes biting and scratching can be a sign that your kitten is frightened, angry, or in pain. Undoubtedly, this is not the norm in most cases:
If someone other than you is criticizing the cat’s behavior, observe how the kitten and that person connect. Since some young children are unable to understand how they can injure a pet, they may unwittingly play too rough with the cat.
You shouldn’t touch your kitten’s face, paws, or belly. Although this behavior is typical for kittens and typically doesn’t signify animosity or anxiety, if left unchecked, it can grow into a serious problem.
Gently examine your kitten while petting it all around.
If it consistently reacts adversely to a light touch in one region, it undoubtedly aches. If that’s the case, a trip to the vet is required.
Verify that your kitty is not acting threateningly or violently. For instance, does the scratching only happen in particular rooms of the house, or when certain people or animals are nearby? In that case, you could want to research the likelihood of fear.
If you’re not sure why your kitten is biting and scratching, schedule a visit with your veterinarian.
Stop Biting and Scratching: How to Do It
It’s possible that kittens who bite and scratch have previously been encouraged to do so. If you or your children thought the kitten’s behavior endearing as a young kitten, this is especially typical. You should never engage in “roughhousing” with your cat and you should never let them bite or scratch.
The cat learns that its hands are toys in this way, which makes it more challenging to subsequently unlearn. Try utilizing cat toys instead of your fingers when playing, and only use your fingers for gentle caressing. Make sure that everyone in the household (as well as visitors) is aware of these rules so that the cat receives a consistent message.
Even if you’ve avoided direct contact with your bare hands and ensured that your cat’s biting and scratching aren’t related to any medical issues, you continue to receive kitten scratches and nips. Here are some ideas for handling the situation and training your cat to stop behaving in this way.
Remove the claws.
Claw trimming, as opposed to declawing, is a common technique that causes no harm to cats. Purchase a cat-specific clipper or use sturdy human nail clippers in place of scissors. Your veterinarian can show you how to trim animals to the right length.
Say “Ouch” loudly and clearly. Utilize the chance to gradually withdraw your hand from your cat’s hold. The cat will try to re-grasp it if you remove it since it will think that the game is still going on. Place your hand away from the cat’s line of sight instead.
Please “Time-Out” the kitty.
You can leave the room, or you can take your kitten to a small, quiet space and leave it there with the door closed. It’s possible that your cat is just overexcited and needs some quiet time to recover. Open the door when 15 minutes have passed. If the kitten is sleeping, which might happen frequently, let it alone for a while.
If the cat is awake, it may begin to yearn for some delicate treatment. Put off playing for now and just give your kitten a loving pet to show it how much you care.
Shift the kitten’s Attention
Your cat will frequently playfully bite your hands or feet when it’s bored or trying to find a toy. Several times per day, give your cat 15 minutes of interactive playtime with a toy. It’s a great idea to use Da Bird or other teasing toys.
You can also use “gloves” from a store that have very long “fingers” hanging off of them or a laser-beam-shaped toy that kittens can chase and pounce on. Once you’ve educated your cat that hands are not toys, your playtime with them should be more enjoyable for both of you.
In addition to the active activity, a scratching post (or two) is a useful addition to your house. Now the kitty is encouraged to scratch in these places. Experiment with both horizontal and vertical posts as well as ones with different textures to determine the kind your kitten favors.
If you and your family have been persistent and used these techniques but your cat is still biting or scratching, it’s time to speak with a veterinarian or seek the assistance of a feline behavior specialist. These experts can visit your home periodically to examine the situation as it develops and offer special recommendations and remedies for your cat’s predicament, lifestyle, and way of life.
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If you suspect your pet is sick, call your vet immediately. For health-related questions, always consult your veterinarian, as they have examined your family pet, know the pet’s health history, and may make the best recommendations for your pet.
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