How To Train Your Older Cat To Accept A Kitten
Adrienne Kruzer, BS, RVT, LVT, has worked with a variety of animals for over 15 years, including birds of prey, reptiles, and small mammals.
Many cat owners do not realize their friendly, single adult cats may have trouble getting along with a new kitten. A new kitten is typically eager to make friends, but the older cats in the household may want nothing to do with the younger one. Often times the older cats will appear sad, reclusive, hiss a lot, and sometimes even stop eating if it isn’t adjusting well to the new member of the family. These behaviors are because cats do not like change, especially when it involves their established territory. Introducing a kitten to an adult cat can cause a lot of stress in your household, but there are some things you can do to help make the introduction go more smoothly.
Preparation is the key to a successful introduction of a new kitten to your older cat. If you prepare your cat for the new arrival and make the changes seem less drastic, then it is more likely to adapt to its new roommate. Give yourself plenty of time to prepare for this adjustment with these steps.
My Cat’s Play Is Starting To Lead To Injuries What Can I Do About This
Under-stimulation, an excess of unused energy, and lack of appropriate opportunities for play can lead to play-related aggression. This may be exhibited as overly rambunctious or aggressive play, which inadvertently leads to injuries to people. In some cases, the play can include a number of components of the cats predatory nature, including the stalk, pounce, and bite, which can be extremely intense. Although play is usually more common in kittens, it may persist through adulthood, especially in cats under 2 years of age that have no other feline companions.
Moving objects that can be stalked, chased, swatted, or pounced upon best stimulate cat play . Providing ample opportunities for self-play, interactive play with owners, and social play with other cats may aid greatly in reducing or eliminating inappropriate play with owners. Successful interactive toys include wiggling ropes, wands, dangling toys, and items that are thrown or rolled for the cat to chase. In addition, before you consider using one of the interruptions , the cat should first receive a sufficient number of play alternatives. Anticipate your cats need to play and initiate interactive play sessions. You should not tolerate aggressive play that is initiated by your cat and directed toward you. Owners that allow the cat to initiate affection and attention-getting behaviors run the risk of these behaviors escalating into more aggressive sessions should the owner refuse the cats demands.
Right Before You Put Down Food For Your Cat Pet Your Cat A Little Bit Then Put Down The Food
What creature on earth doesnt love food and being fed? Eating is vital to our survival, so it makes sense we enjoy it so much and are incredibly happy when we are fed same goes for cats.
If you pet your cat really gently and not for too long right before meals, your cat may begin to associate petting with getting food, which is definitely an incredibly positive experience.
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Let Her Recognize Your Good Intentions
Let your cat see and understand that you only want whats best for her. Always provide her with tasty wet and dry cat food, clean water, interactive toys to play with, and a litter box thats regularly cleaned. These are the basic resources that make cats happy and contented and once she sees that your relationship will most likely improve.
Make sure to spend time with your cat and let her know that you are her meal provider, guardian, and friend. If she has been ignoring you, go the extra mile and approach her. Talk to your cat in a soft and calm tone even if she does not come near and eventually she may start seeking your company.
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Pet Your Cat While Hes Eating
When youre trying to increase your cats level of happiness and make him act nicer, youll have to focus a lot of your time on bonding. By bonding with you cat, youre making him feel closer with you and more comfortable around you. It also allows your cat to learn to trust that youre a nice person and not going to hurt him.
There are lots of ways to bond with your cat which Ill talk more about below, but petting your cat while hes eating is a great way to do this. Eating is something that most cats look forward to. So, by being there and petting him lightly while hes eating, hell start to associate you and attention with the same positive feelings that food brings.
Kinda sneaky, but it works!
When youre doing this, you do have to be careful. Some cats are very protective of your food and may see you as a threat. You need to know how to read your cats body language because not every cat will like this.
If you noticed that his tail is waging or he starts growling, those are both signs that he doesnt like what youre doing so you should stop right away. Instead, just sit there beside him while he eats and dont touch him.
Whether youre able to pet him or not, youll still be bonding and building up his level of trust for you. Afterall, youre not stealing his food!
Ideally, probably after many months of bonding, you should be able to reach for his food or pet him without feeling scared that hell hurt you. This will come with time and your hard work.
Roleplaying A Warrior Cat
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Tips For Raising An Affectionate Cat
Grumpy Cats cattitude has been a popular internet meme, but having a cat like Sir Grumpy is not what most new kitten parents have in mind for their babies. Most of them just want to raise a sweet, friendly cat. But just like human children, cat temperaments differ.
However, following these 6 tips can help you train your kitten to enjoy human contact, be less anxious around noises and unfamiliar objects, and generally grow into a well-socialised cat:
Keep Calm And Stay Positive
If youre a dog person, you may be used to interacting with pets in a jumpy, excited manner. But according to our experts, that kind of behavior tends to send cats running. Dont make any sudden movements, gestures, or sounds, says Koski. The more predictable you can be in your actions, the more trusting the kitty will be of you, she says.
In addition to staying cool as a cucumber, Krieger advises engaging in behaviors that cats can associate with positive results. Krieger recommends giving the cat food or a treat in greeting and making a habit of using the cats name. Make everything positive, so everything good happens around you, she says.
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Outside The Litter Box
You may not realize your cat is choosing somewhere other than the litter box to do his business until you stumble upon face-melting stench behind the TV, for example. Your cat may be marking his territory by spraying or might not be happy with the litter box situation.
Do a check of your carpets, walls, and furniture to make sure your cat has not been marking them or using them as his potty spot. Use an enzymatic cleaner to clean the targeted items or simply toss them in the garbage.
And, by the way, if your cat is peeing or pooping outside the box, take him to the vet. This behavior can be a symptom of many medical issues.
Six Reasons Your Cat Bites You
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Watch Your Body Language
If a cat feels fear, shes more likely to hide or avoid you. When greeting a new feline for the first time, its important to make her feel comfortable. Cats are tiny little things compared to people, Krieger says, so its very important that they feel safe and secure.
Dr. Marci Koski, Ph.D., a certified feline behavior and training professional at Feline Behavior Solutions, agrees. When I meet a new cat, the first thing Ill do is crouch down and greet the cat on her level, she says. Making yourself smaller is less intimidating.
Koski also says its important to check your body language. Direct eye contact can be considered intimidating or even aggressive, she says. Even body language that is directly focused on the cat may appear to be somewhat confrontational.
Youre best bet? Play hard to get. Dont pay attention to her, Koski advises, shell get to you in her own time.
Completing Warrior Cat Names
Next youll need to pick a suffix to complete your Warrior Cat name. These are usually something that matches what you chose for the first part of your name. For example if you chose Tiger the last part might be claw or tail. There are also a few suffixes that have meanings you can use: star is for a leader, kit is for a young cat, and paw is an apprentice.
Alternatively, cats without a Clan just stick to the first part of their name, which is also a great way to name your cat. For example:
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Taking Good Care Of Your Cat
Dont Treat Your Kitten Like An Adult
Ideally, kittens need to spend the first 8 weeks with their mom and siblingsif that isnt possible, you may need to bottle-feed, cuddle, and nurture your little kitten. This will require nearly around-the-clock care, the younger the kitten is. If your kitten is younger than 8 weeks, the same care you give to ensure its good health will help it to begin to rely on and trust you as its human parent. Bear in mind that at this age, you will need to:
- Bottle feed special kitty formula to your kitten every 3 hours until it is ready to wean and begin solid foods
- Cuddle and keep the kitten warm the same way its mother and siblings would if they were all together
- Youll even need to help a kitten under this age go to the bathroom by gently stimulating its bowels as its body may not be able to do it alone just yet
- Keep your kitten clean and away from other pets and older cats as its immune system is not strong enough, and it may not yet be old enough to start kitten vaccinations.
Learn more about the developmental stages of kittens and take appropriate care at each stage.
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Always Work With Your Veterinarian
A medical workup is essential for all aggressive cats. Some cats behave aggressively because of a medical condition or complication. In addition to acute painful conditions, cats with orthopedic problems, thyroid abnormality, adrenal dysfunction, cognitive dysfunction, neurological disorders and sensory deficits can show increased irritability and aggression. Geriatric cats can suffer from confusion and insecurity, which could prompt aggressive behavior. Certain medications can alter mood and affect your cats susceptibility to aggression. Even diet has been implicated as a potential contributing factor. If a medical problem is detected, its crucial to work closely with your veterinarian to give your cat the best chance at improving.
Still Wondering How To Calm An Angry Cat
If you have tried these methods but nothings helped, it might be time to contact your vet. They can give your cat a full health examination to check for any underlying illnesses or medical conditions. Some possible illnesses, where aggression is a symptom, are high fevers, ear problems, wounds or gingivitis.
If your vet out rules an illness, anger in cats could also be related to anxiety. Your cat might be experiencing anxiety towards a specific situation. In this case, anti-anxiety medication may be prescribed for your cat.
If you are in the Tucson area, give us a call! We, at Acoma Animal Clinic in Tucson, will work with you to find the underlying reason for your cats aggressive behavior and help bring back ease and peace to your companion.
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If Your Cats Keep Fighting
If your cats aggression is severe or becomes unmanageable, contact a Certified Applied Animal Behaviorist or a board-certified veterinary behaviorist for guidance. These professionals can provide deeper insight and guidance on behavioral modification for your cats.
Unfortunately, some cats simply cannot live together peacefully. If youve exhausted your resources, time, and energy in the hopes of resolving aggression or fighting between your cats, it may be time to consider finding a new home for one of them or keeping them permanently separated.
Raw Meat Diet: A Recipe For Healthy Cats
The following recipe was developed by Pierson. It yields enough food for 10-14 days for the average cat. For more guidelines in making this food, go towww.catinfo.org.
- 3 pounds of whole fowl or rabbit, including bones, organs, and skin
- 1 cup water
- 2 eggs
- 2000 mg wild salmon oil
- 400 IU vitamin E
- 100 mg vitamin B-complex
- 2000 mg taurine, powdered
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Common Types Of Aggressive Behaviors Between Cats
Cats are very territorial, much more so than dogs. Territorial aggression occurs when a cat feels that his territory has been invaded by an intruder. Depending on where your cat spends his time, he may view your whole neighborhood as his territory. Female cats can be just as territorial as males.
The behavior patterns in this type of aggression include chasing and ambushing the intruder, as well as hissing and swatting when contact occurs. Territorial problems often occur when a new cat is brought into a household, when a young kitten reaches maturity, or when a cat encounters neighborhood cats outside. Its not uncommon for a cat to be territorially aggressive toward one cat in a family, and friendly and tolerant to another.
Adult male cats normally tend to threaten, and sometimes fight with, other males. These behaviors can occur as sexual challenges over a female, or to achieve a relatively high position in the cats loosely organized social dominance hierarchy.
Defensive aggression occurs when a cat is attempting to protect himself from an attack he believes he cannot escape. This can occur in response to punishment or the threat of punishment from a person, an attack or attempted attack from another cat, or any time he feels threatened or afraid.