terrorist kitten - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
 
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-12-2005, 08:02 AM Thread Starter
 
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terrorist kitten

Hi
I'm hoping someone can give me some advice - I have a 4 month old kitten (never having owned a cat before) and I already have 2 houserabbits. The kitten gets on fine with one of them as the rabbit initially stood her ground but the other rabbit gets chased pretty much constantly and jumped upon.

Is this just the kittens way of playing and will she grow out of it as its pretty destressing for my rabbit? I have introduced them over a period of time, keep them apart when I'm not arround and I also use a water pistol when the kitten attacks (which doesn't work particularly well).

Any advice would be gratefully received - thanks!
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-12-2005, 08:10 AM
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The kitten will grow out of her rambunctious ways as she ages, but if she isn't put in her place now, she'll never learn (well, eventually when you start teaching her... anyway). You may need to keep them apart, and gradually allow them together, but the second your kitten gets to playful, take her away from the rabbit. It may be helpful if you give her a nice long play session so she's tired first (if that's even possible with kittens!!).

Its not to save your rabbit from being pestered by the little thing, its to save your rabbits LIFE. Cats can easily hunt and kill rabbits in the wild of your backyard (I know, I've seen the wild rabbits people bring in to put down after a cat attack). Cat bites are serious. They're full of bacteria and close quickly, resulting in deadly infections (even in humans if untreated). I'm not saying your cat WILL do this later in life, but its possible. I mean, even with the best behaved cats who grew up with rabbits, its always possible... but not as likely.

You need to work with her now so she can understand how she's allowed to act around the rabbits and what behaviors get her removed from her playtime with them. It'll take a while, but its all for the best.

Good luck, keep us updated! (and post pictures!!)

Jessie

"There is no snooze button on a cat who wants breakfast."
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-12-2005, 02:06 PM
 
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It's natural for kittens to pounce on fellow kittens and wrestle around to play, it's what kids do. I'm guessing that she thinks your rabbits are play companions too. As she grows up she can inflict serious harm or death to your rabbits. As I'm not experienced with kitten/rabbit interactions, I'll leave the suggestions to the more experienced members who have both.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 01-12-2005, 02:28 PM
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I currently have 2 house rabbits, and 3 very young cats. They get along fabulously, but for a few reasons:

- the kittens have eachother to burn off energy with, to play fight, wrestle, chase, etc. They don't feel the need to do likewise with the rabbits.

- my rabbits are very bold with the cats, and completely unafraid of them. If I had a timid rabbit, I would not encourage him to try playing with a predator

- the cat/rabbit interactions are always closely monitered, and I am prepared to intervene if necessary.

Also, I have lost a rabbit due to a small bite from a cat . If there is any risk to your rabbits, please do not continue to let them play with your kitten. This may just be a matter of waiting until your cat is a little older to play with the bunnies, or providing an area for your more timid bunny to hide where the cat cannot get to him/her. And try to exhaust your kitten as much as possible with an interactive toy, like Da Bird. That way, she doesn't feel the need to expend all her predatory energy on your bunnies.

Let us know how things work out .
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