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My aggresive Tom

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
Well, I would like to inform you all that Tom and Bug (the tabby and the black kitten Twiggy had) are healthy, have their first sets of shots, are pooping, and are schedules for a neuter in a few months (both are males).

Now, Tom, the tabby, is at least twice the size of Bug and is a little Tom in the making. Issue is is that he is rough. Rough with everyone and everything.

You give him a toy, and he will growl, snarl, and bite you if you try to take it from him. I have tried grabbing the toy right out of his mouth and walking away with it, he will run after you and bite you. If you are not fast enough to get it out of his mouth, he will swat and bite your hand, arm, nearest body part. I've tried locking him in a carrier and playing with Bug (so he learns that aggression is not okay and if he plays nice he will get to come out and play), but he comes out even worse so I had to stop doing that.

If you play with him without a toy, he will wrap his paws around your hand and bite you, hard, he's drawn blood on me twice now and he does it with everyone. We've blown in his face, told him no, got up and left (which again, results in him chasing you and biting your legs), pushing him away, scruffing his neck, everything I've read, but he seems unfazed.

He also seems to pick on his brother. If I have Bug and am cuddling him or playing with him, he will run over to Bug, bite him (which usually results in Bug crying rather loudly) and jumping onto my lap. If I am cuddling Tom and Bug comes over, Tom does the same thing.

He is only aggressive if you attempt to play or he has toys or something he wants. Otherwise, he cuddles, will sleep and cuddle with his brother, and otherwise be the cute kitten in the picture you'd think of. But he is very possessive, to the point that he will attack people if they go near me now and he sees. He's only 10 weeks old, has been hand reared since he was 2-3 weeks old, and seriously has been this rough since he learned to play. Today I pushed him off me because he was biting me and he ran around my back and as I tried to get up, jumped on my back and bit me, it's like he thinks he is boss and I am trying everything to show him not to and I do not condone this sort of behaviour.

Grrr, how do I stop him from being a bully?
post #2 of 8
Wow..I'm actually kind of speechless seeing as how the cure for play aggression is usually toy distraction. But he's aggressive with his toys as well?

Can I ask what types of toys you have? They aren't made out of substances like rabit fur or stuffed with food? If they are, or even if they are stuffed with catnip maybe just try some regular toys that aren't made with anything designed to entice little kittys?

As for the jealousy aggressive tendencies...I hope someone here has some good advice for you because that just baffles me.
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Nekomania View Post
Wow..I'm actually kind of speechless seeing as how the cure for play aggression is usually toy distraction. But he's aggressive with his toys as well?

Can I ask what types of toys you have? They aren't made out of substances like rabit fur or stuffed with food? If they are, or even if they are stuffed with catnip maybe just try some regular toys that aren't made with anything designed to entice little kittys?
His first sign of toy aggression was with a ball on a string with a feather on it (fishing rod thing). Needless to say, he growled and ate the feather off the toy in a matter of minutes before we had to take it away. We had those felt mice (no catnip), he loves them and carries them around like he actually killed something, but you can't touch them unless you are really sneaky and he doesn't see you. We had plastic balls with bells in them and he has no interest in them whatsoever. We have a mouse toy thats made of the same material you use on scratching posts and that is one of 'his' toys too. We bought a dog toy, a big stuffed animal thing, to try and use that when he would wrap his arms around us and bite (thinking we could teach him to bite that instead) but he has no interest in it.

And aggression, yeah, it's strange. I have no idea why he does it. Tonight I was sitting on my bed with Bug while Tom was with his toys and Bug meowed at me. Tom heard ( I presume), jumped on the bed, bit Bug really hard (latched on, like you'd think he was a big angry dog) and wouldn't let go until Bug screamed. Then he proceeded to sit on my lap and hiss at Bug until Bug got off the bed. I put Tom on the floor, said no, and picked up Bug, Tom jumped on the bed and jumped at Bug again, I had to open up Tom's mouth to get him off of Bug and again told him no and put him on the floor. He freaked and tried to do the same thing so I ended up having to leave the room with Bug and leave Tom in my bedroom. Tom screamed, cried, whined, attempted to climb my door, etc and I refused to come in until his 10 minute rant was over. I came back in, put Bug on the floor and cuddled Tom because he had been quiet and didn't attempt to kill Bug, and he acted totally fine until again, Bug came over and he did the thing all over again. I didn't let either of them on my bed (which takes a lot of convincing, more so for Tom than Bug), he will act totally fine with Bug and even lets Bug play with a toy (unless Bug attempts to play with the one Tom is playing with, then it's a whole other story).

He is such a strange cat. I never babied either more than the other, they both got equal treatment. In fact, Tom was always fed last as a baby because he was bigger and didn't scream as loud, but they've been on solid food for weeks now and they both get fed at the same time. He isn't possessive around food at all which is good but his crazy aggression is starting to put me at wit's end because he hurts Bug and he hurts me and he's scratched and bit almost everyone in my house thus far and no one has ever done anything to hurt him.

For the first little while, I let their fights over toys and sleeping spots go because I assumed they needed to establish a heirarchy of sorts. But he gets to the point that you can hear Bug scream and it's not really a fair fight so there is only so long before I feel like I have to stop him and get him off Bug. Sometimes he lets go right after Bug will scream once or twice but more so he's been getting to the point that he just holds on to his face or neck, and uses his back paws to kick him and hold him there. I swear, my little tiger cat is a real tiger LOL.
post #4 of 8
An easily stimulated kitten with a high drive. They're not the easiest to deal with - If you found a vet to do so, you could easily get him neutered now. It would be best to get Tom done as soon as he's a good weight to handle neutering.

Hand rearing them is probably the underlying problem. Kittens just don't learn all the social behaviors they should without a mother cat to smack them around and yell at them in kitty fashion.
In the past I've always had kittens like this dealt with by other cats - their mothers and cats (adult neutered males) in the home. Usually this taught them some respect.
post #5 of 8
I bottle fed 2 brothers (litter mates) that were orphaned at about a week old. I can imagine that being without an adult cat can contribute to their behavior but, my two had no adult cat to learn from and I have one exactly like your Tom and his brother is very different. The brother is laid back, more of a follower than a leader, and purrs if you touch him. The other brother was psycho kitty.

So, my experience may be the exception but I have two very different personalities from my orphans. I have later added more to the fur family and my tabby tom is the alpha leader. He has mellowed with age (2 yrs) but still has that same mischievousness.

When he was around 3 to 4 months old and a guest came in the house he would leap on their leg and attach himself while biting their leg. He grew out of many of these behaviors with our persistence in redirecting. Although he really likes the groomer that comes to take care of my dog so he leaps on her shoulder and drapes himself around her.

My only advice is to stick to redirecting. I used the plastic bendable straws. I think at that young age a time out may make them get more pent up energy that needs to be released. I blew in his face a lot and hissed at him. A loud sshhhh is good to try too. Hang in there!
post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 
Well I called the vet I normally go to and he said he will not neuter until 4 months old. I am going to ask around though to see if anyone else will do it earlier than that though.

I don't know if this makes me a bad mommycat or not but today Tom was attacking Bug (what else is new it seems) and Bug was actually fighting back a little bit. It almost shocked me because I've never seen him attempt to bite or swat at Tom back. Tom did not take well to his brother fighting back and latched on to Bug again, Bug screamed a few times before I came over, took Tom off of Bug and held Tom to the ground (I wanted him to calm down and for Bug to have a chance to get away, I wasn't being rough, just holding him there with my hand). Well Bug took this as a chance to get even I guess and he attacked Tom, I took my hand off of Tom and Bug was holding onto him by his neck! Tom took off like a bat outta hell and hid for at least 20 minutes.

I felt mean not breaking up the little bite Bug got in (normally I would break it up when Tom was the one really hurting Bug, I don't always break it up but I try to when it seems to be getting out of hand but I didn't because I was almost shocked) but it has seemed to help. Which might be strange. Tom came out of hiding and he ran over to Bug who was playing with one of the toy mice and went to jump on him and Bug bit him back, hard. Tom ran away again and hid and Bug went back to playing. I was cuddling Bug and Tom came over to jump on him and Bug bit him a few times, his tail all poofed out and his ears back, body curled and staring at Tom, and Tom walked away. Bug calmed down and I pet him a bit more and Tom came over and DIDN'T ATTACK HIM. He literally just lied down beside me and let me pet Bug and him and Tom didn't bite Bug and Bug didn't bite him either (which I was first scared they were going to switch roles).

They are now sleeping together and although Tom is still biting me, he is no longer attacking Bug all the time (well, at least not since like 11 this morning, so 6 hours ago). When Tom goes to bite Bug, Bug bites him back. I don't know how long this will last but Bug seems to have grown in confidence since his little 'I pinned ya!' a little while ago and Tom I think is shocked haha.

I think I need to take some cues from Bug and start biting Tom JK.

My mother says we should get a spray bottle and everytime he bites us, squirt him with water. Is this a good idea or is this the worst thing you have ever heard of? I dunno, it seems mean to me but I am seriously willing to try anything that wouldn't damage him.
post #7 of 8
Originally Posted by Zuma-xo View Post
My mother says we should get a spray bottle and everytime he bites us, squirt him with water. Is this a good idea or is this the worst thing you have ever heard of? I dunno, it seems mean to me but I am seriously willing to try anything that wouldn't damage him.
Some people use them and some don't. Personally I think it's useless. The cat learns to run from you when you get the water bottle, not to actually behave itself. Then you have the cats that aren't afraid of water.

Instead of holding him down, you could scuff and hold him for a few minutes. He should be young enough that it would have some effect and not scare him.
While breaking the two of them up can help some, and if it gets intense you'd definitely want to, they will have to work it out on their own eventually.
post #8 of 8
Thread Starter 
Well, he bit me again.

His started fighting again with Bug but Bug was fighting back so I decided to ignore their fighting. I normally break it up once I hear Bug crying a lot but I decided to just leave them to spar it out.

I ignored the two and was reading a book (on Cat care haha) when Tom jumped up on my lap. Bug was eating so I thought it would be a good time to give Tom some cuddles and affection. He was purring away like no tomorrow. All of a sudden he bit me again. He bit my hand, the space between your thumb and pointer finger. He drew blood and he refused to let go. I got him off by yelling OW and pushing in the sides of his mouth so he is forced to let go I had to go to the washroom to wash my hand out. I currently have four nice punctures in my hand which bled quite a bit, I'm not saying a little bit of blood, I'm talking a washcloth full. Seriously, he acts like a feral cat out of no where sometimes. There was nothing going on really, Bug was eating on the opposite side of the room, no toys, no strange movements, no strings on my pants, my hair was pulled back, I didn't wear my glasses (which all seem to be things that will provoke him into 'playmode' which in turn leads him to bite), I was petting him on his back which normally doesn't alarm him or do anything to upset him and then out of the blue he bites me again.

After wards, he went and picked another fight with Bug which I ignored because I had to clean my hand and honestly, I was too angry from his bite that I assumed it would be better for me not to pay attention to him at all (anyone else have those days?).

I have no idea what to do with him anymore. I know he's a kitten and he has lots of things to learn, but I can just imagine that if this goes unsolved and he gets older, I am going to have more issues than I bargained for.
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