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Discussion Starter #1
Ok its been a month since i took in my Sonic, he's 8weeks at the moment~

My problem is his biting~

Everytime he bites me or attacks my feet, i put him in a custom made carton cage for 5mins...
Do i still play with him after i let him out?

Infact any physical contact will result in him biting & shouting "NO" or "Ouch" doesnt works...btw the "ouch" is genuine...he's biting & gnawing really hard~

any attempts at carrying him in arms or sitting on laps results in the same thing...

honestly speaking...i dun play much with him daily......im gone in the morning at 8am back at home only at 7pm...

after doing housework feeding my 2kids *3yrs old & 18months* eating my dinner i dun really have much time left...as i need to sleep early with my son so that he's able to wake up early to go childcare the next morning...but i always end up falling asleep first...

is it due to lack of attention thats making him behave this way?
after giving him timeout 7 times in a row for biting, i really get demoralised and feel like giving up~
 

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He's trying to play with you and is too young to know he's hurting you. Others on here will have some good suggestions, but

Get a couple toys, maybe some sort of large one like a small stuffed kong type that he can attack, and you can substite that when he tries to bite you.

A kitten definately needs play time. If you don't have much time to give him attention, a second kitten would give him a playmate and maybe teach him some manners regarding the biting.
 

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Your cat sounds very normal to me. I've recently had success with the same problem with one of my adopted cats. First, I avoid letting him play with me directly. Toys are fine, my hands, etc. are not. When I initiate play, its always with a toy. When the cat initiates play, I get a toy and continue. When he would bite or claw too hard (almost always) I discovered a way to stop it that actually worked within a few weeks. The instant he bit or clawed too hard, I made a loud PSSSFFFFT sound while giving him a fast but not hard tap on top of his head. Then quickly get a toy and continue play that way. Kitty got the message! He mostly brings me a toy if he wants to play. And when he does use teeth or claws, its almost always very gentle now.

Some here would say my method encourages the cat to play with me whenever he wants. True, I have sort of "trained" both of us. But I believe play has so much benefit for a cat (and me).
 

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You took him in a month ago and now he's 8 weeks old.
So you got him at 4 weeks old?
That's much to young to leave Mom and I'm not surprised you're having problems, kittens should stay with Mom until they're at least 12 weeks old, that's how they learn proper behavior, they learn from their litter mates how to play nice.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
yes i have tried toys, stuffed toys but it would seem that my feet and hands are more appealing.
might be hard tapping on the head...his gaze is always locked on the hands/fingers whenever i squat down and come near...
So i should just cut off all contact with him and give him toys?
They only hold his attention for less than 5mins...and right now me spending time with him = locking him up in his time-out cage all the time every 5mins...once he's out if im still sitting near him, he'll come for another bite less than 2mins......
I have to totally keep my hands way way off his sight...cant pet or carry him at all~
When im doing my work on my bar counter stool, i have to keep my legs up if not he will jump and bite...in the meantime he will just sit right below me and wait for me to come down......
Only time he doesnt atks me is feeding time.....
Yes i have more or less gathered from the various posts around that this is normal kitten behaviour...so i just maintain to alienate any physical contact with him?
No i have never done the scruff thing on him before as im not very good at it...he pwns me totally, all my attempts failed terribly when he's naughty...my vet did that to him tho...saying that i would need to discipline him more.....
 

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Discussion Starter #7
You took him in a month ago and now he's 8 weeks old.
So you got him at 4 weeks old?
That's much to young to leave Mom and I'm not surprised you're having problems, kittens should stay with Mom until they're at least 12 weeks old, that's how they learn proper behavior, they learn from their litter mates how to play nice.
well he's a stray and i didnt find any cats nearby when i picked him up...which brings to mind that the first 2 days he was hissing at everyone but he didnt bite or atk us the 1st week at all...which led me to think that its me who is not bringing him up very well...getting a 2nd kitten is not possible sadly~
 

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well he's a stray and i didnt find any cats nearby when i picked him up...which brings to mind that the first 2 days he was hissing at everyone but he didnt bite or atk us the 1st week at all...which led me to think that its me who is not bringing him up very well...getting a 2nd kitten is not possible sadly~
Sorry my bad, I have read your previous posts that he was a stray, teaching a unsocialized kitten how to be a well behave cat is not easy.
 

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Like little toddlers, young kittens need a lot of attention and supervision, especially since this kitty missed out on so much socialization with its momacat and litter mates, and really has not learned to control his bite or claws. This takes time, which you don't have, and a young family that needs your attention. For the good of this kittty and your young family, imo I think you should find a new owner. Maybe not the advice you want to hear, as you're likely attached to him, but as he get older and stronger, the biting will likely get worse.
 

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To save time I've just put my responses next to yours in the quotes, but bolded my answers.

yes i have tried toys, stuffed toys but it would seem that my feet and hands are more appealing.
might be hard tapping on the head...his gaze is always locked on the hands/fingers whenever i squat down and come near... Don't do this. Your instinct is right, he'll likely just think you're playing and you'll teach him hand are an acceptable target. No good.
So i should just cut off all contact with him and give him toys? Um, sort of. He's just a baby, so at his age I would say "No" and then use the toy rather than hands. He should realize after a while what you're trying to teach him. When he's about 4 months old he should know this well enough for a correction, which is when you say "No." then get up and walk away. Removing your attention as a consequence for bad behavior. But only for about 5-10 seconds. Then you're back with a toy.
They only hold his attention for less than 5mins...and right now me spending time with him = locking him up in his time-out cage all the time every 5mins...once he's out if im still sitting near him, he'll come for another bite less than 2mins...... He's too young for time outs. Now you need to teach him what to do inseatd of chomping you. If you don't make sure he gets the idea of "bite the toy, not the people" at this age it will be MUCH harder to teach as he gets older. So, substitute your hands for toys EVERY TIME!!!
I have to totally keep my hands way way off his sight...cant pet or carry him at all~ If you play with him more this will settle down. He's a baby, he has energy and nothing to do with it. The fact that he's trying to play with YOU shows that he's bonding, which (despite the bite marks) is a good thing. Play with him. It's how he'll learn manners. And little kittens get tuckered out pretty quick, then it's snuggle time.
When im doing my work on my bar counter stool, i have to keep my legs up if not he will jump and bite...in the meantime he will just sit right below me and wait for me to come down...... Yep. He's a kitten, not a plant. He needs your attention to grow into a happy healthy companion.
Only time he doesnt atks me is feeding time.....
Yes i have more or less gathered from the various posts around that this is normal kitten behaviour...so i just maintain to alienate any physical contact with him? NOOOOO! Kittens NEED contact. They are like babies. They sometimes bite, claw, or run around like maniacs...but they need snuggles too. In order to learn what NOT to do they need to test things out. Its much easier to deal with this when he's little, like now, than when he's 9 months old with no manners. We do have forum members dealing with this right now. It's NO fun at ALL.
No i have never done the scruff thing on him before as im not very good at it...he pwns me totally, all my attempts failed terribly when he's naughty...my vet did that to him tho...saying that i would need to discipline him more..... Your vet was wrong. A kitten this age doesn't need hard dicipline, he needs love and attention and someone to teach him what he IS supposed to do.
well he's a stray and i didnt find any cats nearby when i picked him up...which brings to mind that the first 2 days he was hissing at everyone but he didnt bite or atk us the 1st week at all...which led me to think that its me who is not bringing him up very well...getting a 2nd kitten is not possible sadly~
My Muffin came from a very similar sitution. His mum was feral cat (wild, would only let me within 10 feet of her and only when I had food), and when he was about four weeks old I took him. I would have left him with his mum if I could have, like you, but that wasn't possible. He was 'feral' for all of 5 seconds. After that he was fine, and he was purring and snuggling within a day even though I gave him about 4 baths. (...whole 'nother story.)

What you need to know about kittens like this is that their mums didn't teach them ANYTHING about how to behave, with people or with other animals. At 4 weeks they are supposed to be learning basic coordination, and a few rules (like don't bite mum when you're nursing). It's at 8 weeks that mum starts teaching them about claw and tooth manners. Your boy totally missed those lessons, so it's up to you to teach him. The sooner the better!

Like little toddlers, young kittens need a lot of attention and supervision, especially since this kitty missed out on so much socialization with its momacat and litter mates, and really has not learned to control his bite or claws. This takes time, which you don't have, and a young family that needs your attention. For the good of this kittty and your young family, imo I think you should find a new owner. Maybe not the advice you want to hear, as you're likely attached to him, but as he get older and stronger, the biting will likely get worse.
...I have to agree with catloverami that if you aren't willing to put some serious effort into raising this kitten the best idea might be to find him a home. One with a cat that's 6 months-2 years would be good, then he'd have a playmate and someone to learn manners from/with. It's a descision you should make NOW. While he's cute enough to rehome easily.

If you do want to keep him then this is the point when you realize that it's not all sparkles and rainbows. Kittens need work, training, and lots of love to grow into wonderful pets. If you do keep him then stick around! We'de love to see pictures as he grows, and to support you when he's naughty. We all have kitten horror stories, so you'll be in good company.
 

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To be honest, i have on more than 1 occasion seriously thought about giving up and posting online for another permanent home or foster...
I have been to the point where i have finished typing out everything just short of pressing the submit button online...but i cant help but worry over on how the new owner will be treating...will he eat enough, dry food or wet food...will he bring him to the vet when sick and so on...
im not sure what the situation is like over everyone's country, but over here dogs are way valued more than cats...
Just to state an example...80% of the housing here are known as HDB flats, the housing law over here is that cats are not allowed to be reared in HDB flats...here comes the irony...dogs are allowed~
This is the government's regulation~
Unless u live in a private estate *terrace house or bungalow* otherwise u cannot keep a cat, u can only keep a dog.....
Im in singapore btw if anyone is curious~
The reason i came to this forum is because i failed to find any dedicated local forum over here for cats, sure there are a few, but its mostly adoption or selling stuffs...not really much active postings going on~
There is a local CWS (Cat Welfare Society) over here and i always see abandoned cats and their fosterers looking for a new home for the kitty~
The vet i go to has a facebook page which she frequently posts photos of stray & non-stray cats/dogs that ppl bring to her for treatment.....the injuries and condition are really horrific sometimes...from really disgusting maggot wounds to limb amputations, removal of eye......

When i think of all these...im really worried to give Sonic up...albeit he might not be getting all the attention or love he needs from me as i work from Mon - Sat, but at least i know he's not going hungry or being abandoned again on the streets or getting into any dangerous situation...
well there are dangerous situations at home too, i freak out all the time when my younger son starts running towards sonic with a toy car in hand lol~
There are times when i feel really quite stressed out.....i took him home without any prior knowledge on cats, never had any pets before *unless u count fishes & terrapins* zero experience on handling him, i cant manage to clip his nails or wipe his nose clean *side track a bit, its getting a bit dirty do i clean it or leave it?*
I end up squirting most of his deworming medicine over his face and im seriously dreading feeding the next dosage in another week's time.....

Im not too sure how to describe my feelings right now...cats live for quite a long time...if i give him away...what will he be like in 10yrs time down the road?
Healthy? abandoned? or in a worse state??
Granted i totally wouldnt be giving another thought or worrying about him at all if i just left him at the carpark that day he would be just another stray cat on the streets......
But i didnt......i picked him up and brought him home~
I have come into his life, whatever actions or decisions i make will affect him dearly for the rest of his life and mine~
Not a day pass at work without me thinking about him...what food should i get for him, is he eating enough, is what im doing correct etc~

Quite lost now actually......i dun really know what would be the best thing i should do for him right now...not too sure how other ppl would put up with his bitting IF i really give him up......

Sry for the wall of text, de-stressing a bit lol
 

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I think the big thing you have to remember is that he's a baby. You mentioned that you have young kids, do you expect them to act like adults? No, because it's not fair. You need to be able to teach him, like you teach your kids, or else he will grow up to be a brat...same as kids.

Personally I enjoyed raising kittens, but it WAS hard.

Maybe contact the cat welfare group and see if they would let you bring him in, and take an adult instead you should still pay the adoption fee, but they would probably have an easy time rehoming him and you wouldn't have to deal with kitten stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Btw thks to everyone for their input in here~

Just a quick update:

Yes Sonic is biting/atking feet less and less~
Been trying to add in as much play time with him as possible and this really seems to be working fine so far~
So far there has been only 1 incident in which i had to time out him *i have not had to time out him at all since i posted the thread*
I was sitting on the sofa and he came up and jump unto my lap and just laid there, i went to pet and fondle him *couldnt resist* and voila the biting came~
I pulled my hands away and scolded him loudly NO~!
He then literally ran/clawed up my chest trying to get to my face i blocked my my arms and got bitten really hard on my left arm's underside~
he was like clinging hanging in midair refusing to let go when i held my arms out and away trying to shake him off~

Well that was the 1 and only isolated incident, which probly is my fault...he probly still isnt ready for petting/fondling yet~
 

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It might be a weird question to ask but are you petting him properly... Alot of cats don't like stroking their head and body like we usually associate with petting cats and many cats I've met over the years can't stand it, but respond really well to chin and cheek scratches very gently.
I'm sorry you are having so much trouble with him and you should be commended for trying to find the best way to help him instead of giving him away. I really hope your efforts are rewarded with an extra special kitty in the end! I wish you the best of luck with him.
 

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well he's a stray and i didnt find any cats nearby when i picked him up...which brings to mind that the first 2 days he was hissing at everyone but he didnt bite or atk us the 1st week at all...which led me to think that its me who is not bringing him up very well...getting a 2nd kitten is not possible sadly~
I, too, call my kitten Alice the Terror. <3

Is there a possibility that you could FOSTER a litter of kittens around the same age as Sonic? I did that with my Alice, and she was exactly like you are describing Sonic. She would bite too hard, and actually make me bleed, and the high pitched noises, hissing, whatnot wasn't working. She was separated from her mother at 5 weeks (I know it's too young, there wasn't another option), and she hadn't yet been taught how to be social.

I fostered a kitten litter, in the hopes that THEY would be able to teach her how hard it was acceptable to bite in play. They taught her how to be social, and taught her all the skills that, if her litter had survived, she would have learned on her own. Sonic needs that as well, and if you can't foster a litter for a short time (usually a couple months at MOST), try finding a friend with a kitten a couple weeks older and set up FREQUENT play dates.

Interaction will help him learn what he can and cannot do when he's playing. Alice doesn't bite hard anymore, and now that she's getting out of her kitten years, she is practically an angel.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
ok some bad news...currently back to square 1 again with Sonic yesterday~
He started attacking everyone's legs again...my sis, my wife & today it was my 9month old nephew *im going to get it from my mom later when i go back*
Got a call from home couple of hrs earlier...Sonic pounced on my baby nephew~
Now he's trying to attack/bite my hands viciously again when i try to pick him up~
Personally i think its caused by my fren...he came over last nite but i was out and i think he was playing a little rough with sonic -_-
Sigh...he likes cats but i dun think he anymore knowledgeable than i was~
Since im going to start all over again...im thinking of going to buy a clicker~
We should have a sub forum on Cats Training on here...think would benefit lots of ppl~
Im intending to record on video my attempts on training him soon...hopefully everyone can help see what im doing right or wrong~

*also hopefully when i get home later my mum isnt going to issue me an ultimatum on giving away Sonic -_-*
 

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Shuyun,
I just want to say that I am very happy to see your level of commitment with Sonic! I have been following your story and he couldn't have found a better human. I know it must be tough, but I hope you keep fighting to keep him and train him into a well-adjusted cat. And I would be very strict with your guests, don't let them play rough with him, it will reverse the training you have worked so hard for so far.
 

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Wow, i never knew a kitten could be such hard work! I don't mean to brag or sound rude, but it's a kitten, how bad can it be? Maybe, because I've only ever had three cats my whole life and they've all been lovely, I find it hard to understand. My initial reaction (which is perhaps very unfair) is that the kitten is just not being handled right...They are FULL of energy at that age, it's to be expected that you're going to get bitten and scratched as part of 'playtime'!

It needs to expend it's energy in one way or another and this needs to be addressed. I also agree that a second cat would work wonders...but if it's not possible for you, then listen to the advice above...i have none.
 

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Wow, i never knew a kitten could be such hard work! I don't mean to brag or sound rude, but it's a kitten, how bad can it be? Maybe, because I've only ever had three cats my whole life and they've all been lovely, I find it hard to understand. My initial reaction (which is perhaps very unfair) is that the kitten is just not being handled right...They are FULL of energy at that age, it's to be expected that you're going to get bitten and scratched as part of 'playtime'!.
While not every kitten is like this many are. Generally kittens who were taken (or lost/ect) from mum and litter mates early (6 weeks and earlier) are prone to it. They never learn manners, or that biting hard hurts. It makes the owner's job significantly more difficult.

It is possible to deal with under 12 weeks or so, if you catch it early and know how to handle. The longer you wait, or try harsh methods, the worse it will get. The problem is that many (read: most) people instinctively try punishment, which the kitten interprets as play. So it gets worse.

Shuyun,
I just want to say that I am very happy to see your level of commitment with Sonic! I have been following your story and he couldn't have found a better human. I know it must be tough, but I hope you keep fighting to keep him and train him into a well-adjusted cat. And I would be very strict with your guests, don't let them play rough with him, it will reverse the training you have worked so hard for so far.
ok some bad news...currently back to square 1 again with Sonic yesterday~
He started attacking everyone's legs again...my sis, my wife & today it was my 9month old nephew *im going to get it from my mom later when i go back*
Got a call from home couple of hrs earlier...Sonic pounced on my baby nephew~
Now he's trying to attack/bite my hands viciously again when i try to pick him up~
Personally i think its caused by my fren...he came over last nite but i was out and i think he was playing a little rough with sonic -_-
Sigh...he likes cats but i dun think he anymore knowledgeable than i was~
Since im going to start all over again...im thinking of going to buy a clicker~
We should have a sub forum on Cats Training on here...think would benefit lots of ppl~
Im intending to record on video my attempts on training him soon...hopefully everyone can help see what im doing right or wrong~

*also hopefully when i get home later my mum isnt going to issue me an ultimatum on giving away Sonic -_-*
Ok. You need to have a chat with your friend and explain the rules. Setbacks happen, he is still jut a kitten. Mistakes will happen, but it is important to get back to routine as quickly as possible.

I'd suggest that from now on you put him away when you have guests (unless they fully understand the rules and you are SURE they will follow them), and if you aren't home to supervise. It isn't OK that he scratched the baby, but it wasn't an attack. If he had truly attacked the child it would have been awful, he was just trying to play and had (unfortunately) had his bad habit reinforced. Chalk it up to BAD timing and prepare better.

I would LOVE to see your video! I think it would really help to see what you're doing and if I can offer any better suggestions for you.

The other thing I REALLY strongly recommend is trimming his nails. It will help you be able to deal with him more safely. I know he's feisty, so play with him a LOT first, until he's lying on the floor panting! Then, grab the trimmers and nip off the little sharp suckers! I don't know what I would have done with Doran if i hadn't kept his nails nice and short. Don't worry about doing all of them at once. Aim for 2 nails a day, and call that success. If you get any nails trimmed give him something yummy...like a little bite of cheese. That will help him like trimming better.
 
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