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I am NOT a tree!

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
My 3.5 month old kitten has decided it's fun to take flying leaps onto my torso when I'm looking the other way, and sink her claws in so she can climb up on my head. I'm never expecting it and it hurts like crazy! Whenever she does it I'll yell out in pain which freaks her out and she runs off all scared. After that I can't come near her for a little while - yet this doesn't seem to deter her from doing it the next time.

I'm not sure how I can get her to understand that this is unacceptable behavior without unintentionally having her associate ME with the scary noises. She's starting to be uncomfortable with me petting her - even when she's calm - presubably because she thinks I'm going to pick her up and put her in her time out room or yell at her.
post #2 of 11
Hi, cut her nails as short as possible and this will reduce the pain. She loves and trusts you, she wants to be close to you - jumping into your arms basically, if you let her minus the pain I bet she'd like to sit on your shoulders for a ride whilst you walk about, so if you can find a way to minimalise the pain, it will minamalise you yelling at her, and hopefully help form a better bond.
post #3 of 11
Zoey used to do this. I hated it at the time, but miss it now!

I am not an expert on animal behaviour, but I guess I would just suggest that when she does it, just put her down and ignore her. On the other hand, make sure you pick her up lots when she's near you, but not latching on!
post #4 of 11
Just a suggestion of soft claws for her nails? I really don't know how to get a spazzy cat to be unspazzy. I usually adapt the best I can.
post #5 of 11
Does your kitten have an appropriate object to climb? Like a nice cat tree in front of a window? That may help detour the kitten from you if there's a more fun toy to climb.
post #6 of 11
One of my foster babies is a "people climber" I have scratches all over my back, neck, and shoulders. I clip her nails frequently so it's not quite as painful. Other than that, I find that kittens tend to outgrow this. I also agree with the poster that suggested to make sure there is something else that is fairly high for her to climb.
post #7 of 11
Oh my, does this bring back memories!! Such loving ones...and the 'jumper' is now only just a year old. How he loved to jump on our an attempt to sit on our shoulders...just to say Hi! Or see what we were doing.....and yes, it did hurt...and sometimes you just can't anticipate that he was going to do it.

Anticipate...operative word! Where are you..where is she??? Try to face her at all times and convince her not to jump. If you have to have your back to her, figure you're going to get jumped on and be ready!!

Clip her nails...or sometimes I would arch my back and try to make him drop off my back. All the time telling him how much it hurt and I didn't like it!!

He did stop it. He's too heavy now..being male, he's 15 pounds. But, if I'm on my hands and knees doing something...well, guess what...I become his table...really too funny for words.

Another suggestion..if you can....wear a good sturdy jacket around. It won't hurt so much. She will stop...she loves you and wants to be close. Her intentions are not bad ones. Try to persevere until she gets older and heavier.
It's a kitten thing!!
post #8 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the replies...does anyone have a good/effective way to clip her nails? With our older cat we just wait until she's relaxed and clip them wherever she's laying down, but the kitten won't tolerate it, so I'm not even sure how to hold her still. We've had her for over a month and I think we've only successfully trimmed them twice, and it was a huge ordeal both times.
post #9 of 11
Swaddle her in a blanket so that only the paw you are working on is exposed. The blanket or towel will need to be snug but not suffocatingly tight. Don't be suprised if you can only do one paw at a time. But with time (could take months) she'll get used to it and allow you to do more each time.
post #10 of 11
We've never successfully wrapped a kitten to clip claws. We did it when they were sleeping - one claw at a time, one claw a day, clipping every day, we just kept going around in circles until they got old enough and used to it enough to be able to do a few at a time, then all of them all at once.

post #11 of 11
Another suggestion, if possibe...and will cost money...take her to the Vet to have her nails trimmed. A freaking out kitten is hard to trim. Most Vets don't charge to much to do it $5-$10 .

One has to have nerves of steel to trim claws with a wriggling slippery kitty bound and determined not have get her nails trimmed. We usually did it by having my dh hold the cat sitting up (the cat's back against his chest) in his lap and he's in charge of holding him/her. I take the leg and bend it, then grasp the paw and squeeze gently to expose the nails...then quick as I safely can...clip, clip, clip and clip. Do the dew claw is harder but not always necessary every clipping.

Remember, you're only cutting the tips off. Make sure your clippers are sharp and meant for cats. Don't use dog clippers. By cutting off just the tips, at first, she won't really feel any discomfort..a kitten's nail is very thin and fast to clip (unlike an older, thick nail of an aging cat) A kitten's nails grow fast. She may have to be clipped twice a week.

Also, remember, the pain will be alot more tolerable with her shorter nails when she wants you to feel 'her love' !!!!! LOL Keep remembering that when's a win-win situation.

Good Luck!!
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