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Discussion Starter #1
Alright here's what's been happening lately. Tony is about eight weeks old, I've had him for two. So I'll be sitting at the computer and he'll come and start attacking my feet. I'll pick him, tell him "no" sternly and put him on the ground. Then he'll come back, harder than the first time. I'll do this again, firmly saying "no" and put him back on the ground. This is how it's like though: I push (saying no) and he pushes back harder (attacking harder). Then I picked him up by the scruff of his neck (read that on about.cats.com) like his mother would to discipline him and held him to the ground for 3 sec and told him no. But I mean he doesn't stop! This probably went on for like 45 sec, I wasn't being violent or being rough or anything, he was attacking me like crazy though! Finally I grabbed the jar of pennies and gave it a good shake and he took off. About 20 sec later he went over to his scratching post to attack it and he's been there for about 10 minutes now, still attacking.

The last time I had a kitten I was pretty young so I don't remember it to clearly. Is this normal? Like I mean after he took off he's been pretty much just playing with his toys, and it doesn't seem like he's mad/scared of me or anything. Does it sound like I'm taking the right corrective actions? Anyone with similar experience/advice please tell me anything you got.

Thanks
 

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yup, sounds pretty normal to me :lol: . these behaviors will get a little less frequent with age, but until then, have fun with your little one!!! :lol: My Sasha, about 8 1/2 months, still does this kind of stuff, no matter how many times u tell her no. She calmed down quite a bit after we spayed her, but you have a good 2 to 3 months before you can do this, so until then, just enjoy kittenhood!
 

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haha that sounds like my two kitties too. but they tend to take it out on eachother more often so my suggestion would be to get your kitty a friend! that way they can matrix hop all over eachother (mine do ALL the time, right on down to the high arch jump body slams) :D

it's cuter to watch them do it to eachother than to have them do it to you. :lol:
 

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I'm guessing he's just playing, some kitties are much more active than others. Sounds like he's got a lot of steam he needs to let out!

Here are some cheap and quick ways of keeping him occupied:
- Try tying a small plastic bag in knots so it becomes a ball - of sorts. Wave it around in front of his face and throw it as far as you can. Most cats I know would run for it and the plastic 'ball' would definitely keep him occupied for quite a while.

- If you have big boxes, you can cut 'windows' in it and let him play house. My cats are nuts about boxes! It keeps them occupied for weeks upon end! When he's in the box, stick your finger in and out of the 'windows' quickly like it's an insect. I'm sure he'll love it.

If that doesn't keep him busy for long, tie a string of garlic around your ankles. Cats, like vampires, hate garlic, and he'll stop attacking your legs just 'cos they stink! heh...
 

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Disciplining does not work on cats for the most part. Not sure about this case. Generally disciplining just makes them a little scared and then they do the behavior when you aren't around. But in this case they CAN'T do the behavior when you aren't around since it involves your leg.
 

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No. Using physical force on a kitten is like trying to lasso a hurricane. Holding him down will only make him upset and more likely to bite back. Restraint is frightening to a cat. The "holding down" and "rolling over" types of discipline are not even recommended for dogs any more, because it makes them more aggressive. Same with cats.

Obviously, you have already noticed this. When you push him or hold him, he comes back at you even harder. That's very predictable. Using physical force will make him more violent and aggressive.

You have posted a couple of times now about "discipline" and "correction" and "punishment." It seems like you want to have a lot control over this little being. Cats are known for being independent, and that's what this little guy is. Punishing him or trying too hard to control him will only get you a morose, unfriendly adult cat.

Just as with a child, the art of "distraction" is the key. If he's attacking your ankles, it's because he's full of energy and needs an outlet. So give him one that's more acceptable--toys! Good suggestions have been made. Also, regular play sessions will go a long way toward helping Tony be a calmer and happier pet. It's a good habit to get into now. Plus, he may be telling you to "take a break" from the computer--good for you, too! :wink: See http://www.littlebigcat.com/index.php?a ... w&item=012

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I'm not sure your intention in your "advice" but it makes me feel like I am a control freak, which is not the case at all.

First off, you say that I have posted a number of times about "discipline, correction and punishment", well excuse me for my limited vocabularly. I guess all that I should have said instead of these advectives is "what should I do?" I'm here to learn jean, I've never had a kitten before. It especially distresses me when I read your post and you make me sound like a control freak is the fact that the reason I sought this site is to learn about how to raise a kitten. I think that it's a very responsible thing of me, a first time kitten owner, to seek out different websites, and forums like this, in order to learn what to do. So I got some advice on other websites that you obviously have a problem with. Great, it's so nice to know that I am not reacting in the best way. Your advice on distraction did help me, that's one thing that I have been learning myself lately. I can't help like I'm being chastized by you for getting the wrong advice.

I don't know if what Tony is doing is normal, or what I should do. If I'd never driven a stick shift before, I would certainly have questions about it and I would seek out advice. If a website gave me the wrong advice, I would appreciate someone helping me out, the way you talked to me makes me feel like a bad "parent". I am not a bad parent, just a misinformed one. Actual, tangible tactics help me. How am I supposed to know that the website is wrong? It's not like the site was called www.Ihatekittens.com , it was about.cats.com, they gave advice, I followed it, it's not good advice, I will seek new advice elsewhere.

Not sure if you intended to be condescending towards me or not, but I certainly took it that way.

drjean said:
No. Using physical force on a kitten is like trying to lasso a hurricane. Holding him down will only make him upset and more likely to bite back. Restraint is frightening to a cat. The "holding down" and "rolling over" types of discipline are not even recommended for dogs any more, because it makes them more aggressive. Same with cats.

Obviously, you have already noticed this. When you push him or hold him, he comes back at you even harder. That's very predictable. Using physical force will make him more violent and aggressive.

You have posted a couple of times now about "discipline" and "correction" and "punishment." It seems like you want to have a lot control over this little being. Cats are known for being independent, and that's what this little guy is. Punishing him or trying too hard to control him will only get you a morose, unfriendly adult cat.

Just as with a child, the art of "distraction" is the key. If he's attacking your ankles, it's because he's full of energy and needs an outlet. So give him one that's more acceptable--toys! Good suggestions have been made. Also, regular play sessions will go a long way toward helping Tony be a calmer and happier pet. It's a good habit to get into now. Plus, he may be telling you to "take a break" from the computer--good for you, too! :wink: See http://www.littlebigcat.com/index.php?a ... w&item=012

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
 

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"Not sure if you intended to be condescending towards me or not, but I certainly took it that way. "

I've been here a few months now and I can tell you that Dr. Jean is rarely condescending. Just take what she said for what it was...good advice :) It is so easy to read something into posts that isn't there...

So often cat behavior is misunderstood. It can be...well frustrating at times for those of us that have already figured out our cats LOL. Just read through the list in the behavior section and you can see that for yourself. Humans often have unrealistic expectations of cat behavior often thinking it should behave like a dog or automatically understand what we want of it.

You really did do the right thing seeking help! We want to help you understand your kitten. After all, they are like little sponges at this age. So often what happens in kittenhood affects them for the rest of their life so "training" and communication is vital at this stage :)
 

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The problem with email is that it's open to interpretation, smilies aside. No, I did not mean it in a condescending way. I'm sorry you took my response in such a defensive way. I was concerned by the way you phrased certain things and therefore I tried to emphasize why the techniques you were using won't work. You did not say where you got those ideas, it sounded like they were your own.

When I respond to questions on this forum, I try to make the answers as general as possible, to benefit not only the person who asked the question, but others who have asked similar questions in the past, or who might be having similar problems now. Much of what I say, therefore, is in the way of broader information for the entire forum, as well as based on issues that have been discussed before but bear repeating.

I also tend to be a little brutally honest and frank, and sometimes that disturbs people. My apologies.

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
 

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Discussion Starter #12
"Then I picked him up by the scruff of his neck (read that on about.cats.com) like his mother would to discipline him and held him to the ground for 3 sec and told him no"

Well yes I did mention where I got this idea from but that is neither here nor there. Surely you can understand my point of view, maybe I did get defensive. The reason for that is that I am using techniques that I am reading about, reading about in order to raise a happy, healthy kitten that is being led in the right direction (ie not picking it up everytime it meows, doing the correct thing to direct his attacks elsewhere).

Let's just call this issue closed and in the future I will take into effect the way you answer posts.
 
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