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Hello, I have a crazy bengal kitten :)

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
We have a 14 week old bengal kitten. She is very nice and playful. However, lately she is becoming too playful, so couple of questions:

I know kittens in general and bengals as a breed are high energy. But is it normal if kitten runs around almost all the time and plays with anything in the way? Looks like she is in hunting stage, so she hunts everything, including hands when we try to pet her. She even bites during play, though her teeth are small. It is fine when she is kitten, but when she becomes a cat I am afraid all this playing is not going to end well for us:-) She has a scraching post and bunch of toys (she becomes even more exited when she plays with them). I kinda want to calm her down a bit, she seems overexcited....

Any suggestions?

Also,

We tried feeding her different dry foods (IAMS, Purina) and wet foods (Friskies, Wellness). She seems to only like Friskies so far and ignores other food. I know Friskies are cheap and no good, so need some advice. I tried mixing friskies with dry food, she won't touch it.

Any suggestions?

Thank you
post #2 of 14
She sounds very normal in her behavior for a kitten, especially for her breed. Many people get two kittens for this reason, to help give outlets for energy. Play with her at least an hour a day, this will help her boundless and endless energy, pole toys are good like Da Bird.
About the food, I would try to switch her to something higher quality for sure.
post #3 of 14
I've had some success with softening dry foods with a bit of no - or reduced-sodium chicken broth. You might try that and then if the kitten goes for that, gradually reduce the amount of broth until she is eating just dry food with the friskies as a treat. Just remember to pick up the moistened food after about 30 minutes to an hour so it doesn't become fly-blown.
post #4 of 14
Thread Starter 
We play with her probably more then an hour a day...it seems she wants to play all the time though...the only time she settles down is when she sleeps. Does the energy decrease as kittens grow?

Second cat is not an option, we have a 1 bedroom apartment...
post #5 of 14
The energy is typical of a kitten. I don't know anything about her breed, but I can tell you my cats have all calmed down with age. It took Jordan the longest to really start acting like an adult cat, he was around 4 when I noticed a real difference in his energy. The others were around 1-2 years old when they calmed down.
post #6 of 14
Sounds like a kitten. We worry when they DON'T bounce off the walls.

I'd say, keep increasing the amount of playtime until it tires her out. I like a laser pointer for this because it works even at times when the kitten is high energy and the human is not, but be careful not to zap her eyes with it--the safest way is to use it on the ceiling or high parts of the walls, if she'll respond to that, rather than actually pointing it toward her.
post #7 of 14
This sounds absolutely normal.

Bengals are very high energy cats and as kittens they can be complete nutcases (but in a good way). I have a bengal girl and now at 3 years old she's a lot easier to live with. It was probably at around year, year and a half that she got out of the most kitten insaneness. So settle in for a ride, it'll be a bit before the kitten calms down some.

Also she's still very very active, just easier to live with and she's a bit better at entertaining herself.

Redirection is the main thing to get cats off attacking feet and hands etc. have toys always on hand or within arms reach and redirect to those and play some. You'll learn to read the body language of your cat and pre empt it so you distract them with the toy before they've even started thinking about going after your hands.

In terms of getting to pet them etc. when they're in hunting mode, that's not really going to happen, you've just got to tire your kitten out first with play.

I had to play with Nikita around 2 almost 3 hours a day for the first several months. I also rearranged my flat to have more things for her to explore, stairs to climb, boxes to hide in etc. My schedule was pretty much, wake up an hour early to get an hour of play in before work, go to work, play another hour when I got home from work and then again almost a full hour just before I went to bed so that I would tire her out before I got to sleep so I had better odds at getting to sleep through the night without having a mad kitten running all over everything and waking me up.

Bengals are beautiful but they are not low maintenance cats, that's a part of the high energy that's always mentioned when trying to describe what they're like and as a bengal owner you're now experiencing it first hand.

To iterate, your kitten is completely normal, it's not going to work trying to calm her down, not really, instead you've got to play even more with her and give her a constructive outlet for all her energy, otherwise she'll end up finding her own way of releasing that energy (and most likely through climbing curtains and attacking your feet etc.) she will calm down some with age but it will take a while.

In the meantime enjoy her, you'll look back fondly onto the kitten antics later on when she's more settled.
post #8 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Siggav View Post
This sounds absolutely normal.

Bengals are very high energy cats and as kittens they can be complete nutcases (but in a good way). I have a bengal girl and now at 3 years old she's a lot easier to live with. It was probably at around year, year and a half that she got out of the most kitten insaneness. So settle in for a ride, it'll be a bit before the kitten calms down some.

Also she's still very very active, just easier to live with and she's a bit better at entertaining herself.

Redirection is the main thing to get cats off attacking feet and hands etc. have toys always on hand or within arms reach and redirect to those and play some. You'll learn to read the body language of your cat and pre empt it so you distract them with the toy before they've even started thinking about going after your hands.

In terms of getting to pet them etc. when they're in hunting mode, that's not really going to happen, you've just got to tire your kitten out first with play.

I had to play with Nikita around 2 almost 3 hours a day for the first several months. I also rearranged my flat to have more things for her to explore, stairs to climb, boxes to hide in etc. My schedule was pretty much, wake up an hour early to get an hour of play in before work, go to work, play another hour when I got home from work and then again almost a full hour just before I went to bed so that I would tire her out before I got to sleep so I had better odds at getting to sleep through the night without having a mad kitten running all over everything and waking me up.

Bengals are beautiful but they are not low maintenance cats, that's a part of the high energy that's always mentioned when trying to describe what they're like and as a bengal owner you're now experiencing it first hand.

To iterate, your kitten is completely normal, it's not going to work trying to calm her down, not really, instead you've got to play even more with her and give her a constructive outlet for all her energy, otherwise she'll end up finding her own way of releasing that energy (and most likely through climbing curtains and attacking your feet etc.) she will calm down some with age but it will take a while.

In the meantime enjoy her, you'll look back fondly onto the kitten antics later on when she's more settled.
Everything Siggav said but I will add this: As the owner of not one but two Bengals (and three other moggies) I see no harm in feeding Friskies wet to her if: A.) She actually EATS it, and B.) it does not give her runny poops.

Switching a bengal to a new food can be hard on the cat, as most bengals are known for having sensitive tummies.

I do feed my cats a higher quality dry food daily, but when I give them wet, they get Friskies shredded chicken & gravy, because they like it, it doesn't mess with their tummies and there is no fish in it. It IS a nutritionally complete food.

Just be sure that at her young age you are giving her at least 3 feedings a day if she is eating no other food. Bengals require a lot of fuel to replace all that energy they burn off and that goes triple for bengal kittens.

Now...where are some pictures of your bengal baby? *hint, hint*
post #9 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by GingersMom View Post
Everything Siggav said but I will add this: As the owner of not one but two Bengals (and three other moggies) I see no harm in feeding Friskies wet to her if: A.) She actually EATS it, and B.) it does not give her runny poops.

Switching a bengal to a new food can be hard on the cat, as most bengals are known for having sensitive tummies.

I do feed my cats a higher quality dry food daily, but when I give them wet, they get Friskies shredded chicken & gravy, because they like it, it doesn't mess with their tummies and there is no fish in it. It IS a nutritionally complete food.

Just be sure that at her young age you are giving her at least 3 feedings a day if she is eating no other food. Bengals require a lot of fuel to replace all that energy they burn off and that goes triple for bengal kittens.

I am tatally agree with you.
post #10 of 14
Thread Starter 
I appreciate all the responses, thank you
post #11 of 14
Hi, I have two bengal kitties, both age 3. The male is very calm and the female is a firecracker. She only stops moving when she's asleep She loves water and will stand outside the shower and *SCREAM* (and try to jump over the shower door!) until you let her in. She talks constantly and can say multi-vowel "words". She actually says, "Hello!"

I laughingly say she has FOCD (feline obsessive-compulsive disorder) because she has several strange compulsions. She will find and then lick anything sticky - tape, stickers, etc. Also she must be in the water if there is water to be in, anywhere - the sink, the bathtub, the kitchen sink (!). She must stick her head in any drinking vessel left unattended and yes, knock it and it's contents all over the place.

So, I think your Bengal is just being herself. We, as humans, have to change our behaviour to balance any issues with their behaviour, cuz they're sure not going to change!

I recommend that you think seriously about feeding your Bengal a higher quality food. IAMS is not good for them. Bengals need a very high protein food with no grain fillers. My cats love Innova's EVO, which is I believe 50% protein, and very good for a bengal.

If she is biting now, you must not let her do that. If she bites, stop petting her and continue to do so until she gets the message.

Good luck and enjoy your very wonderful, unique kitty!
post #12 of 14
One would think that a person who was going to take on a purebred cat would do a little research beforehand to get an idea of what to expect.
post #13 of 14
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zane's Pal View Post
One would think that a person who was going to take on a purebred cat would do a little research beforehand to get an idea of what to expect.
A first-timer could still reasonably wonder if their particular case was normal or something else, though. Nothing wrong with being a newbie and knowing it!
post #14 of 14
Thread Starter 
Every cat is individual, so behaivor has nothing to do with researching a breed. I have 2 close friends with bengals and the cats act completely different. Mine became crazy in past few weeks, before we would call her lap-cat, cause she would just jump on my lap and sit there.

She bites during play, so what's the best way to prevent her from doing that? If I stop petting her it doesn't help..any other ideas?
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