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We rescued Ruffian from a crawl space at 3 weeks and hand raised him. He was a biter from the beginning and I didn鈥檛 do enough to stop it.馃様
He鈥檚 7 months now and I actually think he mistakes biting for affection. He jumps up on my lap sits nicely for a minute-no petting- and starts to savage any exposed flesh. Does it in the middle the night as well. Once he latches on I can鈥檛 get him to detach. We can鈥檛 neuter him yet as vet is watching possible heart condition. Does anyone have suggestions? We will keep him no matter what, but need some answers. Thanks.
 

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What you are experiencing with Ruffian is what happens when a kitten is taken away from its littermates and momacat before it is 3 mos. old. From birth to 3mos. kittens learn to control their bite and claws by wrestling with their litter mates and interacting with momacat or other cats, and they learn body language and what other cat sounds mean. It's very difficult to teach a kitten that has missed this important socialization period of its life. I suggest you do not let the kitten into the bedroom at night so that you can get a good sleep. At 7 mos. now he is starting to come into his "terrible teens" as as I call them when he is becoming more bitely and feisty and bold, and can last from 8-9 mos. up to almost 2 yrs. before he settles down more. You'll need to drain his energy by playing with him several times a day with a wand toy that has feathers on the end of it., or a cord to drag around in a snakelike movement. Don't let him bite your hand, say a firm "No biting", and give him something to chew on......a rubber toy or stuffed mousie, plastic spirals, ping pong balls to bat around, and other toys.....don't put them all out at once, but switch them around so he does't get bored. If he bites your hands or ankles, leave the room and go into another room and ignore him for a while, or put him in a room alone for 5 mins. or so. Hopefully he'll learn that biting isn't keeping you around. Give him lots of affectionate cuddles, cheek scrunchies and chin scratches, and other places on his body he enjoys. Hopefully he'll learn that biting isn't going to get him any attention, but be prepared it make take quite a while, and some cats don't learn to control their bite. Good luck! and All the Best!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thank you for those great ideas! I鈥檓 going to give it Time and patience. The terrible teen analogy is very helpful.
 

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Don't get discouraged if it takes a while. I have socialized ferals - it took me 3 months to be able to pet one of them. But now he is my best buddy. Best time I ever spent!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the encouragement. I know it will take a lot of time and work but he鈥檚 such a great little guy it will be worth it.
 
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