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Strange behavior: sucking on ears...

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
My nine week old kitten, Sniffles, loves sleeping on my chest or my lap. She's very loving and affectionate. The only prroblem I have is that she seems obsessed with my ears. She constantly runs up my chest and begins to suck on my earlobes! I thought she only did this when she was hungry, but she does it every chance she gets. Does anyone have any idea why she does this?
post #2 of 6
You are her new mommy. It is a nursing reflex. She is a little young to be away from mom, and little ones like that often suckle on strange things. Some of them grow out of it, some never do. You will probably have soggy earlobes for a few months, at least.
post #3 of 6
Kittens who are taken from their mother too soon often have suckling issues. Generall, it is best for kittens to stay with Mom until 12 weeks, although obviously this isn't often the practice except with breeders. Suckling, especially at the age of your kitten, is done more for comfort than nurishment. They are eating solid food as their primary diet, and are weaned but will still suckle Mom to feel close to her. Your kitten sees you as her mommy now, and is taking comfort with you by suckling your ear.
post #4 of 6
Sniffles should have stayed with mother cat until she was approximately 12 weeks old. She was probably still nursing when taken from her. Many kittens who were weaned too early (by mother cat or breeder) will try to nurse on anything that feels similar to the real thing!

My guess is that Sniffles kneads soft blankets and tries to suck them also. If she doesn't, she probably will when you stop her from sucking your ear. Try to find a soft, fluffy stuffed animal with soft rubbery parts to help her with this need. If you can find one with a heart beat, better yet. These substitute mothers are available online.

The habit is cute when they're little, but not as they become large cats. Unfortunately, the general public thinks 6-8 weeks is a suitable amount of time with mother and siblings. Unfortunately, they're mistaken. Good luck!
post #5 of 6
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post #6 of 6
my boris is a suckler too! and only with me. get loves to get all his hugs in during the morning, so we have to be prepared when we open the bedroom door to be accosted by this love monster. he gets up in hubby's face and snuggles, and same with my mom whenever she happens to be there during one of his amorous moments, but i'm the one he suckles. i usually just slide my hand between his mouth and my earlobe to get him to stop--it can hurt when he does this--we've had him for 5 months and he was 6 weeks old when we adopted him, having been at the pound without his mom for a week. so he definitely has some issues, but he's still not over this one! hopefully soon!
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