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Still clawing me, biting, and now I'm bruised.

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I have been trying so hard to keep Jessie from biting and scratching. Using a spray bottle just seems to antagonize him further. He will literally look at my unmoving leg (with pants on), then latch onto it with his teeth and claws. Its always when he's in that playful mood, he doesn't care about toys, he only attacks me!

Maybe he's just trying to get my attention. Maybe I should play with him more. I dunno. He can be so relaxed and letting me pet and cuddle him, but then when he's in a playing mode, I could be doing absolutely nothing and he'll launch at me.

I've tried trimming his nails but he won't let me. He could be calm and quiet as a mouse until I just ready one of his claws for clipping, then he'll launch into scratch-cat-mode and wriggle and fight me and I have to give up.

No point doing nail caps, because you have to clip the claws before putting nail caps on, and my problem is I can't clip his nails.

And this doesn't help his biting. I can't put caps on his teeth.

Now I have a bruise the size of a quarter and a scabby scratch where his claw literally went through my pant leg into my thigh and scraped along my leg. The sad thing is I think he was just trying to get onto my lap that time.

What do I do? What methods for teaching/correction will work? I provide him lots of cardboard he likes to scratch and old phone books, but why me? Why ME?

post #2 of 14
Is he still a kitten? How old is he?
post #3 of 14
Thread Starter 
6 months old. I'm trying to be patient. But its disconcerting to be sitting there, your cat next to you on the floor, then to have claws and teeth suddenly digging into your leg (Or hands, or in the case of last night when I was in bed, having him pounce my face when I just looked at him.)
post #4 of 14
They're kittens, you need to get all that pent up energy out of them, and trust me this is no easy task!

Do you have any toys for him to run his butt off? When I play with mine, my goal is to get him panting from being out of breath.

In regards to clipping nails, it's a tough one. I can clip my kitten's nails and he doesn't care, but if I try my roommate's cat, I'm looking at some deep lacerations!

My suggestion would be to give him treats when you are clipping his nails. You should condition him to associate clipping nails with receiving a treat.
post #5 of 14
Is he neutered yet also? Instead of spraying him make a loud "OW" type noise and walk away ignoring him. He will (eventually) get the point that you don't like it and he gets no attention that way. It's what his kitty playmates would do.

Have you gotten 'da bird' toy yet? You can keep his antics at arms length and it is so enticing I will GUARANTEE he will forget all about you and your tasty legs.

It will definately take some training, patience and let time go by.

Take him somewhere to get his nails clipped if you have a hard time doing it.

Sounds like you have a spitfire of a kitty on your hands.
post #6 of 14
My mams kitten has been like that, and she wsnt playing with him enough but after a couple hours yesterday of me rolling about the floor with him and his mouse he forgot all about biting anyone
post #7 of 14
I remember your other post about this behavior. It is something that requires time and patience in order to improve along with being consistent.

I don't recall if you answered the questions about neuter.

Has he been neutered? He is old enough and this will help.

Remember....he is a TEENAGER. They will grow out of SOME of this, patience.

What I did to get through this with my 3 boys:

*Tie a couple of shoe laces together and tie this to your ankle. He will get
energy out chasing the string and NOT your leg.

*Do not use water bottle. Yell OWW, or squeal.

*Blow a sharp puff of air toward him. The noise this makes and if any air
reaches him will distract him.

*Buy those plastic bendable straws. Put them around everywhere and when
he bites, blow air toward him then give him a straw to chew on. This helped
mine the most. Try it. Replaces the unwanted behavior with the wanted.
He cannot figure this out on his own and punishment WILL NOT work with
a cat. There is info about this in the sticky above.

*Teach him to get his nails clipped slowly. Wait until he is very tired and
actually goes to sleep. Clip one nail, wait a second and try more until he
wakes. Then leave him be until he sleeps again. Touch his paws often.
That way he gets used to them being handled. It will eventually work, again
patience required.

*Do you have a cat tree or something for him to climb on? Something he can
climb on vertically will help. The cat trees usually have a scratching post
built in.

*Be consistent.

I may have left some things out. Please, do these things and what others have suggested and you will be successful. And remember, he will mature and grow out of some of this behavior.

*
post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skimble View Post
And remember, he will mature and grow out of some of this behavior.

*
My Zane is almost 9 and he still gets that way sometimes.
post #9 of 14
I don't have any suggestions to help you with this because I'm having the same issue with my 2 month old Siamese, Trixie. It happens at random times. Most of the time though we'll be in the middle of playing when she totally ignores the toy(s) and pounces for my leg or foot. She digs her claws into my leg and bites anything (i.e.- creases in my jeans, my knee, etc.) she can get her mouth around. A few nights ago she woke me up around 4 o'clock in the morning biting my toes. I kicked out of instinct. If I'd known it was her of course I wouldn't have done that but my imagination gets the better of me and I imagine gremlins or rats rather than a cute little kitty! She landed in the floor a few feet away from my bed, completely unharmed but a bit frazzled. Needless to say, she hasn't done it since then. At least not in the middle of the night.
The only explanation I can think of is that young cats and kittens have a LOT of energy and they can't contain it. If we had as much adrenaline as they do I'm sure we'd be rowdy and obnoxious as they are. Trixie has such a wild expression sometimes I often wonder if she isn't possessed!
post #10 of 14
For the feet at night, you just have to have them under the covers. Bare toes are way too tempting.
post #11 of 14
I noticed!
I usually don't mind getting under the covers, especially in winter, but my room is connected to my bathroom and I go to bed right after my shower so my room is really humid.
post #12 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Skimble View Post
I remember your other post about this behavior. It is something that requires time and patience in order to improve along with being consistent.

I don't recall if you answered the questions about neuter.

Has he been neutered? He is old enough and this will help.

Remember....he is a TEENAGER. They will grow out of SOME of this, patience.

What I did to get through this with my 3 boys:

*Tie a couple of shoe laces together and tie this to your ankle. He will get
energy out chasing the string and NOT your leg.


*Do not use water bottle. Yell OWW, or squeal.

*Blow a sharp puff of air toward him. The noise this makes and if any air
reaches him will distract him.

*Buy those plastic bendable straws. Put them around everywhere and when
he bites, blow air toward him then give him a straw to chew on. This helped
mine the most. Try it. Replaces the unwanted behavior with the wanted.
He cannot figure this out on his own and punishment WILL NOT work with
a cat. There is info about this in the sticky above.

*Teach him to get his nails clipped slowly. Wait until he is very tired and
actually goes to sleep. Clip one nail, wait a second and try more until he
wakes. Then leave him be until he sleeps again. Touch his paws often.
That way he gets used to them being handled. It will eventually work, again
patience required.


*Do you have a cat tree or something for him to climb on? Something he can
climb on vertically will help. The cat trees usually have a scratching post
built in.

*Be consistent.

I may have left some things out. Please, do these things and what others have suggested and you will be successful. And remember, he will mature and grow out of some of this behavior.

*
All very good suggestions! Especially the screaming loudly in pain part, that always works. Also as Skimble recommends, touch and feel his paws often as part of the petting experience, so he gets used to you touching them. And try trimming his claws when he very sleeping or very very relaxed, one at a time if you have too.

It took my cats a year and a half to get to the point where I can now trim their nails at any time so yes you need to be patient!

Also, as a general rule, cats *love* chasing after strings
post #13 of 14
In addition to all of the great suggestions, our kitten (7 months old) LOVES LOVES LOVES track toys. If you don't have one, I suggest one or more. She plays with them every day.

So far her faves are:
The Cheese Chase
The Turbo Scratcher
The Petmate Crazy Circle

We have a few others, but she's not as big of a fan. We have 2 of the Turbo Scratcher and that is by far her favorite.
post #14 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Firecat View Post
I've tried trimming his nails but he won't let me. He could be calm and quiet as a mouse until I just ready one of his claws for clipping, then he'll launch into scratch-cat-mode and wriggle and fight me and I have to give up.
I had a cat that acted like you where murdering him to moment you tried to clip his nails. I think he had a bad experience at the Vets or something and associated the whole thing with a lot of pain. The trick is the break the process down. Forget actually clipping for now, just get him comfortable with you holding him and manipulating the nails. Then manipulate the nails while holding (but not using) the clipper and so forth. I think you get the idea. If he resists, back down to the previous step. Good luck!
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