Just a quick note about the nail clipping. Our Annie was pretty much the same as your sake in the beginning about the nail clipping. When she was a kitten, as long as she was drowsy, we could clip 1 or 2 paws worth of nails at a time. When she was around 7-8 months I noticed that all of a sudden she didn't want us to pick at one of her paws - turns out that she had broken one of her nails and it must have been hurting her. I think it wasn't too bad, since it didn't bleed, but it must have been irritating at least. I'm pretty sure that it happened one day when she was climbing the curtain and got stuck (but that's a whole other story
). We took her to the vet, but there wasn't much she could do except remove the broken part and let it heal on it's own. She's never been the same about nail clipping since.
Although it's probably not the best thing for her, our new routine now is to clip the nails as a team - the dh holds her and I clip the nails. The reason this works is that dh also holds a small container full of dry food and treats at the same time
. I think the food/treats are enough to distract her from (or at least make her tolerate) the nail clipping. My hope is that with enough repetition, we'll only need to give her a few treats instead of letting her have as much as she can eat while I clip. Also, what type of nail clippers do you use? As a groomer, you probably have a nice set of clippers, but I found a huge improvement when I switched to the guillotine type - I think the noise they make isn't as aweful to her and we get a cleaner cut. Plus, I think repetition is important, we're trying to clip her nails once a week - whether she needs it or not
As for the biting - I wish I had some advice to offer. Whenever Annie bites, we usually say 'ouch, ouch, ouch' really loudly and act like she had half-killed us. It took her a while to catch on at first, but she rarely does it any more. But we've never had as severe a problem as you do - it was always playful when she was younger. Just a thought, I know you've tried redirecting the biting to a toy, but have you tried a small teddy bear type toy? Maybe something alittle bigger, like the size of another kitten might help? Also, if you don't have da bird - get it. It's absolutely worth every penny. Annie is relatively lazy now (she's over a year old), she won't even chase the laser for more than 5 mins. But she plays with the bird for an hour and a half three times a week - and I feel bad putting it away. Maybe if sake had something like that to take out her agression on? Keep at the clicker too - we've never used it for nail clipping, but we've been able to teach Annie a few tricks like 'high five', 'shake', 'sit', 'kisses' - but definitely not 'come'. I might try using it to teach 'down' for when she is on the counter (since we've already lost that battle!).
On a side note, it might help to know that while it seems funny, I was alittle creeped out by annie sometimes when she was a kitten. Usually, she was a little snugglebug, but every once in a while she would get this strange look in her eyes - like she was stalking me. Her eyes would get very wide, pupils dialated, and she would stare at me all wound up like a spring. some times she even made strange little peeping/chirping noises (not quite like when she sees a bird but close)
Even though she was fairly tiny, it really freaked me out! Then, sometimes (especially when we were lying down or in a reclining position), she would pounce up onto us and get right into our faces so that our nose were almost touching. I used to say that it was like she saw something in our eyes that she had to see, up close, absolutely immediately. It was pretty creepy since you never knew when she would do it, and sometimes it was quite a shock! Maybe it just takes them a little while to realize that we don't like to play like that? At least Annie didn't try to bite our faces though, just our hands. I really think that you're problems will improve as sake ages, but I know that it's really tough right now. It can be so frustrating when they are kittens - we had major issues with cord chewing and curtain climbing. While it might seem funny, we had to reinforce the living room curtain rods - she was still climbing them when she was 10 months old! Finally though, she's settled down - so there is hope. Just try to hang in there alittle while longer.
Good thing this was just a quick note!