My kitten won't stop sucking the blankets.... - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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Old 08-01-2004, 12:46 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default My kitten won't stop sucking the blankets....

Hi! This is my first post on the board, but I've been around as a reader for quite a while. Before posting this I ran a few searches and saw some great threads, but I have a different angle I want to ask about...

Basically, my kitten won't stop sucking on my blankets. He only does it at night, and only when I'm in the bed under the blankets. In fact, he doesn't even sit or lay on the bed at all unless I'm in it.

I learned a lot from some of the similar posts on the board, about why they do it (being separated from Mommy too soon) and the fact that they may, or may not, grow out of it...

But it's getting to be a really big problem. He keeps me from sleeping. He kneads and claws on me and sucks and purrs like a diesel truck all night. If I put him out of the bedroom, he cries & claws at the door and the carpet all night, which also keeps me up. I've had him for about 2 months now, and he's done it for most of the time that he's been with me but it's gotten progressively more vigorous, and I see no reason why it won't continue to get more so unless I find a way to put a stop to it.

I've had some luck with switching blankets & bedsheets every other night (he didn't seem as interested if they're fresh out of the wash) but even that doesn't seem to be working anymore, he's caught on.

So the next idea I had was that maybe there's something I can add to the laundry wash water that would make the blankets unpleasant to the taste for him (but obviously not hurt him!)? Anyone have any ideas, or any other thoughts as to how I might stop the behavior? I'll try anything at this point, I want some sleep!
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Old 08-01-2004, 12:50 PM   #2 (permalink)
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My sisters cat used to do this every morning on her dressing gown when her cat came for a cuddle. I think it's like them suckling their mother and it's a comfort and affectionate thing for cats. Dylan just licks, I think I'd prefer it if he sucked something lol.

I know bitter apple can stop cats chewing wires etc, but I dunno how well it'd work on sheets (ie if it would stain or anything) If not a light mist of the stuff over your sheets may help I think most pet stores stock the stuff.

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Old 08-01-2004, 12:58 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I love that idea! I'm not really all that concerned with whether or not it stains my blankets--I can always use old/dispendable ones. I don't know why I didn't think of that (maybe because I'm sleep deprived? hehe!), I think I'll go get some today! Thanks!!

You're definitely right about the affection part--"affectionate" should be his middle name. He is the sweetest kitty ever, and I know that he only does this because he loves me, so I feel really guilty about wanting him to stop.
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Old 08-01-2004, 05:01 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Hmm, my 12 week old kitten does the same thing.
However, we realized she took a real liking to a gray fleece throw in particular. So, now...every night we fold it up neatly and put in bed next to me (this way she is still in bed with us) and we sit her on it. She immediately starts suckling and kneading ON the blanket. The running joke in our house is not to forget to get Addison's "Mama" before we go to bed. When we put her on it, we say..."Here Addison, here's your Mama."

It seems to do the trick. Try giving your kitten it's own blanket and maybe put it on top of yours for a little while and then slowly move it next to you once it goes into the kneading "trance". She doesn't care where we move her (as long as she's on her blanket) when she's in that mode!

Good Luck.
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Old 08-01-2004, 05:37 PM   #5 (permalink)
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We've tried a few things... when he first started doing this, we noticed that there was one blanket in particular that he liked. Eventually we removed that blanket off the bed, put it on the floor next to the bed, and put a different blanket on the bed. We thought he'd still sleep on the original blanket, but he didn't.

We did have a couple of night's peace, but then he started sucking on the other blanket. So we took that off and replaced it with another, same routine, and so on. Until we ran out of blankets.

What we eventually figured out is that he doesn't seem to care for the blanket unless we've been sleeping with it for a couple of days (I guess it takes that long to gather up smells like us, like him, and like our other cat).

I even tried to be sneaky and put an extra sheet on top of the blanket, making sure the blanket was covered entirely. I thought maybe he only liked blankets, and not sheets. But that only worked for a couple of days too.

I just got back from buying some bitter apple spray, so we're gonna try that tonight. I think I might also try the idea about folding up the "latest favorite" at the end of the bed to see if he'll use that instead. Lots of great ideas, thanks ya'll!
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Old 08-02-2004, 12:08 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I'm not sure if this will help, but I'll tell you about Chester and his preference for kneading. He loves my pajamas when they're "balled up" on the end of the bed. He also loves an afghan that I use when watching TV.

I suspect it's my scent that he's cuddling up to, so if the blanket doesn't work, you might try an article of clothing that has your scent all over it, put in an appropriate spot?

Good luck!

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Old 08-02-2004, 02:10 PM   #7 (permalink)
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How was last night? any luck??
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Old 08-02-2004, 03:55 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I got the spray, and just put like a real light spraying over the covers. It worked at first--I got several hours of sleep in!

Eventually he started sucking again though--and since I was asleep, I can only take guesses as to how this happened... but I'm wondering if he found a spot that didn't get sprayed, or if he just gradually licked the stuff off until he had cleaned a spot.

Tonight's plan is to apply a slightly more thorough layer of spray. I've also started imagining up some other ideas to incorporate the blanket-moving process. I have a really good feeling about this!
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Old 08-02-2004, 03:59 PM   #9 (permalink)
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oops, double post!
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Old 08-17-2004, 09:34 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default my cat does the same thing

I just got him yesterday and he does the exact same thing, i changed the cover to a rougher one n he still did it. i don't think he's ever been in a bed before so i dont' think he's used to it. but he's real cute!
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