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Still being a brat :(

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Our kitten is still kind of bratty. About 3 weeks ago we last posted on the board about this, and having been following the instructions we were given - when he bites or scratches, we say no very firmly, then put him on the floor and ignore him until he decides to cuddle nicely.

However, Thomas is now 4 1/2 months old and his biting is starting to REALLY hurt. He also has not stopped. When he feels he isn't getting enough attention he will race across the room jump up, bite, and then race away. He still attacks legs and feet in the middle of the night. We understand that he's very exuberant, but he's now strong enough to draw blood when he bites and we're starting to think seriously about having him declawed.
post #2 of 19
I really don't know alot about the effects of declawing but I will only give you my first hand observations of my mother -in- laws two cats that have been declawed. They compensate for the loss of the front claws by constantly using the back claws. These are sweet cats but everytime you pick them up they hold on with the back claws and will retract their claws alot more I think because they feel like they have to. Sometimes cats will bite alot more often because they feel defenseless without their claws. Just my opinion and what I have seen with declawed cats.....

He is still very young and he will probably grow of these crazy things he is doing. The biting thru the covers is very typical for cats at this age. We make sure we have plenty of blankets over our feet and when they attack we think it is hilarious.
post #3 of 19
Have you tried just... thoroughly exhausting him? Mackerel was a little bit like this- she'd roll over on her back, and we'd think she wanted us to stroke her tummy... but as soon as we touched her she started savaging us... kicking and biting and scratching with her front claws. In the end, we decided that as well as hissing and saying 'no' and putting her down on the floor when she did it, we'd just play with her more- especially when she rolled over onto her back, knowing that she was probably going to attack us. We have a mouse on a fishing rod that she loves and now she's often just too pooped to be savage.
post #4 of 19
I would put soft claws on my cat before declawing. Declawing is really cruel. Extremely painful and totally unneccesary.

It will also make the biting worse, which at this point probably can't seem possible. but if you think the cat is hard to live with now just wait.

Honestly, the cat is still young and feisty. Have patience, keep applying all you have learned to help curb this behavoir. My cats will act up if I am not giving them enough to do. The need daily interaction and play at that age. At least a good hour of running and playing hard.

If you really feel you don't have the patience to see this through please rehome the cat before declawing (mutilating) it. Please.
post #5 of 19
One of mine, Toby was very bad with this at 4 1/2 months (thats still a baby). I would make a hissing sound at him, like my other cats would do to him and he'd stop for awhile, eventually, he grew out of it.
post #6 of 19
You need to start clipping his claws now, to get him used to having it done. Declawing is illegal in most countries outside of North America for very good reasons!
Many declawed cats end up in shelters because of their undesirable behavious - biting and not using the litter pan.

Also, he's at the age for teething which will make him want to bite and chew.
post #7 of 19
Thread Starter 
To clarify about claws, we do clip his claws and have done since he was 8 weeks old. He's fully used to it by now as we only clip one paw each time we do it so he gets used to shorter, more frequent sessions. His scratching is not as bad as his teeth.

Also, with attacking feet under the bed covers - he's not interested in them. He's only interested in the stray foot that comes outside the covers, which he enjoys attacking fiercely and biting until you wake up with it bleeding.
post #8 of 19
Have you considered consulting an animal behaviorist? I don't know where you are, but one of the animal hospitals here has a vet whose practice is limited to behavior issues--she's board certified in animal behavior. My own vet also provides referrals to a local behaviorist if people need help.
post #9 of 19
3. This website considers declawing a drastic way to curb cat behavior. A painful ordeal for your kitty we would suggest that declawing never be considered for any behavioral issue. Health issues are entirely different. It is up to you as a responsible pet owner to explore all the different options available instead of declawing. Your cat is dependant on you to make wise choices for her, and not put her into any more stress or discomfort. Please be a responsible pet owner and research this subject thoroughly. Understand that if you are pro-declaw in your posts, you will encounter opposition. Please learn more about alternatives for declawing here in our forums as well as on our website itself. Declaw - More than Just a Manicure. Hopefully those of you with claw-related problems will find solutions by spending time in our Behavior Forum.

As you can see above, TCS does not agree with declawing, so we urge members to look to alternative methods which can work. And at 4 1/2 months your kitten is still very young
post #10 of 19
You want this behavior to stop, right? Why consider declawing? It's more likely to make a cat who already bites bite harder. I've known "biter kittens" to be declawed - they are often dumped in the shelter because they are worse once declawed.

Have you looked into Soft Paws?

Please read this thread - - Bea begs you to never declaw - save your cat the pain & suffering she will live every day of her life with.
post #11 of 19
I hear your frustration and sympathize. But - Bijou was very much like your kitty. I did the hissing and loud NO's but it took time and patience. Once he outgrew those "terrible two's" and "teenage" stages, he became the most wonderful cat we've ever had. He does not bite nor scratch. He is wonderful about getting his nails clipped - I don't even have to hold him. He is relaxed, laid-back and totally loving. Even when he wants to play and gets a bit rough I can put my face right up to him and he will not bite me or scratch me.

You kitty may be teething as well. I tossed some of those fat, plastic drinking straws around for him to chew on. He loved them and they were safe as they could take a lot of chewing. When one would get somewhat chewed up I would replace it with a new one or several new ones.

Your cat is still a kitten and needs your understanding, patience and guidance. You need to teach him acceptable behaviour and it sounds as though you are doing just that. Don't expect miracles - give it some time. You will be rewarded with a wonderful, gentle and loving cat as long as you continue with the advice you received here about the hissing, blowing and time outs. If you are rough or treat him roughly in anger you will also reap bad results and have a cat that may never trust you.

As Jcat has said, we are very anti-declaw here and with very good reasons. It is a mutilation and you could end up with worse biting and your cat refusing to use the litter box.

Please be patient and do the right thing for your cat as well as yourself.
post #12 of 19
I had 4 little kitty cats doing this all at the same time. I didnt hiss, but I certainly said "Ouch". I can remember a time, that I couldnt get any sleep because they would be biting my feet under and out of the covers, all night long.

They all played together, wrestling and playing and did that with me, as well. I was probably a lot more tolerant and patient than most because I had just lost my previous cat, Babygirl that I felt guilty about.

But my cats grew up with no discipline from me at all and none of them bite or scratch. I can pet their tummies, kiss their tummies, hold some of them upside down (and they will purr). They all come running to me when I call them. I can make a list of things that are just wonderful about them.

And that was not intervening. Your kitty will outgrow it.

Something I find very confusing is that if its more biting then clawing, why would you consider declawing?
post #13 of 19
My kitten did the same thing and slowly grew out of it. I just always redirected him to a toy when he bit me or said "ouch!" loudly and he eventually stopped.

He died a few weeks ago and I wish I still had him here biting my toes
post #14 of 19
Monster was like that when he was a kitten, biting, scratching, he did it all. But I understood that he was too young to be away from his mom when I got him, and that was probably the problem. You said that he was 8 wks when u started clipping his claws? So how old was he when u got him? You probably know that 8 wks old is too young to be away from mom. Mom & siblings teach each other boundaries.

Please don't declaw him for these issues, he is just a baby and does not know yet that what he is doing is bad. He will learn soon and grow out of this. Monster still bites and uses his claws sometimes but its not even close to as bad as it was when he was a kitten. Declawing him will not fix his problems, but could make them worse. That is not something I would be willing to risk..
post #15 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thomas was 7 1/2 weeks when we got him. I know that's too early to be separated from mom, but we got him from a shelter and mom was not there. The shelter says the litter was brought in at about 6 weeks.

We're considering declawing because he still does scratch, although the biting hurts a lot more.
post #16 of 19
Why would you still be considering declawing, if you know its cruel?
post #17 of 19
The biting will just get worse if you declaw him. Have you tried Soft Paws yet? There awesome!
post #18 of 19
Originally Posted by thomaslove View Post
We're considering declawing because he still does scratch, although the biting hurts a lot more.
Jack used to claw at the carpet, but all that stopped once i started clipping his claws, so the scratching can't be that bad if their clipped properly?.

By declawing your choosing the easy way out instead of having patience and understanding with him. But i have to warn you, if you do get Thomas declawed you may not have any support from anyone on it here

As for the biting, did you used to wave your hands in front of him a lot when you first got him?
post #19 of 19
Please don't declaw your kitty. It will not stop the biting, it will make it worse. We have a kitten named Sunny that we found outside when he was teeny-tiny. We believe that he was dumped and we took him in. It appears that Sunny was take from his mama too early, because he was an EXCESSIVE biter. I'm talking, running up to us and attacking, biting us in our sleep, biting us every time we pet him, etc. We started hissing loudly at him since nothing else seemed to work. This has really helped and now he only bites us out of spite (like when we won't let him do something he wants to - like run out the door, he gives a quick drive-by-bite).

Sunny is now 7 mos. old and he gets better and better every day. Please give your kitten a chance, as he/she is only a kitten. It will get betterI know that even with enduring all of the biting, I wouldn't trade Sunny for the world.
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