Thursday, December 2, 2010

BITNG THE HAND THAT FEEDS

DON'T LET THAT SWEET INNOCENT FACE FOOL YOU

Tucker and I had a bit of a rough time last night. He truly is a cute kitten who likes to cuddle and play. He greets me at his door every morning and stretches his little paws up on my leg so I can pick him up and hug him. He's sweet as can be most of time, but I've begun to wonder if he has a split personality. He bit the heck out of my hands last night, the little vampire.
I'm having a difficult time with his rough play biting. I know he's not vicious or anything near it, but I can't understand why he's so rough when I've been so tender with him - well, until last night. I was very firm with him after he bit me so hard. At one point his ears were laid back and he had a wild look in his eyes. I've raised many kittens but none has acted as roughly as Tucker. I broke my own rule last night - the one where I say to always be kind and loving to kittens, never smack them, don't flip their noses, etc. Well, Tucker had his nose flipped last night. Telling him "no bite" and offering something for diversion did not work. I'm thinking I may have a spoiled rotten kitten on my hands - and whose fault would that be? Ahem.
My plan is to call the SICSA vet today and see if she thinks there is something more I can do to help him get out of this rough biting mode. These are not little pinches he's been giving me. My hand and wrist were bleeding after our last "play" session. One minute he was cuddled beside me in the chair, purring. The next, he was on my lap with all fours wrapped 'round my arm and teeth sunk into my flesh. That hurt! My fear is that he'll be adopted to a family with young children and he'll be too rough for them. Some people mistreat animals if the animals don't act perfectly. Tucker may be experiencing growing pains but I need to find a way to help him learn this is not acceptable behavior.
When I placed Tucker in his room last night, he reverted to the sweet docile boy with whom I love to cuddle. What gives?

7 comments:

Cat Haven Crafts said...

Hi Kady!
It seems Tucker is into his terrible twos! Here is a website that may help? http://www.perfectpaws.com/handle.html

Cat Nap Inn Primitives said...

oh he is just too cute..but the biting does hurt and he needs to learn..hoping the link above that Laurie sent will help.;)

Anonymous said...

I remember the same behaviour with kittens I've had in the past Kady, you would think they were schizo!, but I also remember they do grow out of it, although it's tough when you get scratched and punctured. I hope you find a gentle solution to curbing this behaviour. He's a smart cookie, he'll learn!...Merilyn

Karen said...

Kady, this situation is right up my alley. Our little Gracie is 10 years old and still likes to bite. She has always done that and no matter what we do, she still likes to go after the knuckles. She can be so loving and purr and enjoys our affection and then, she lets us know she has been handled enough and goes for the hands.
I hope you can break the habit for Tucker. Please let me know what the vet tells you.

QUILTING IS BLISSFUL, DI said...

Hi Kady--I have had cats that do this too--some stopped some did not--yet they were great loving cats--so don't know what to tell you at this point--hopefully someone has an answer--gracie is trying to bite some--but so far it has been gentle--I do think it has something to do with there hunting instincts--flesh is flesh--and they do play with there catch first then they get down to "business"--so maybe just instinct to them!!!???
Hugs, Di and miss gracie

Linda ★ Parker's Paradise said...

My Dad's cat-Sammy-is 15 and he still plays rough. You need to nip this in the bud ASAP. I don't know if a physical response ever works. If anything, it reinforces the physical play. When he does something you consider inappropriate, quickly and firmly put him on the floor and say firmly - NO-and you can add Bad Kitty, if you want. They really only understand a few words. They will better understand your voice and facial expression. Being exiled from you is the worst punishment. Try just putting him on the floor and if that doesn't work, put him in his room for a half hour or so. Doesn't he play with other cats? He needs his litter mates to kick his butt! I'm sure your older cats only put up with so much. They will straighten him out.
My Dad has never made Sammy behave and he is so old now. You would think he'd mellow out but he hasn't. It is Dad's fault. He has always played rough with that cat! Sammy never does anything like that with my Mom, or anybody else for that matter.
I can remember having a Siamese cat when we were growing up. After they declawed her ( a crime against nature! If you don't want your furniture scratched, don't get a cat!) Anyway, Buffy would sit on a kitchen chair and bite people on the leg when they walked by!
*Linda*

Jenny Carter said...

Well, by now he is in a new home and this post probably wont matter. But I have rescued many kittens mostly feral and I can tell you that he is growing and at this age there may be a little harder play. He would be doing it with his siblings, so he does not know better that it would hurt a human hand. Our hands are different from a sibling cat's fur... Anyway, another reason is a scent you may have on you or just a mood. Cats and kittens go thru them just like us. Sometimes they are grumpy and want to rough house and others they are sweet as can be. He is young and he will learn, but looks like he'll have a dog to rough house with. Again he is a teenage BOY remember. lol They are very like us, ya know. Teenage boys are temperamental and can get into trouble...lol