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Do kittens go through the "terrible twos"?

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 

I'm hoping that's what this is because that means it won't last laughing02.gif

 

Our 7 year old cat Tulip passed away in November. After much thought we decided we wanted to adopt a new kitten. We already have Tulip's sister Pansy and our almost 2-year old black lab Isis.  In February, we adopted Storm from the Humane Society.  Her name definitely suits her. She's a wild one. Thankfully we're at a stage where her and Pansy sort of get along, Pansy is at least able to tolerate Storm even if she's annoyed by her.  Storm has always had a habit of getting into things but the last week or so she's gotten worse. She relentlessly jumps on the counter, knocks things over, and tries to climb the screens on the windows.  We try to use the spray bottle and tell her "no" when she's doing something bad. She doesn't like to be sprayed but she doesn't always jump off the counter when we're spraying her either. She actually will run over to the stove and climb up on the back of it, as if she's safe there. Crazy cat. My fear is that she'll run over there when the stove is on and burn herself, she doesn't seem to smart with things like that (she has stuck her chin and paw in hot wax of a burning candle...I only turned away for a second, needless to say, we've stopped burning candles).

 

Her and Pansy both scratch at the carpet on the stairs, they have a scratching post (two actually) right at the bottom of the stairs, we've tried countless times to redirect them to the scratching post but it doesn't seem to help...

 

Anyway, I guess what I'm wondering is if anyone has any other ideas we can try to get her to calm down. Her and the dog get along great and they often play together. But her constant jumping on the counter and getting into things is getting old fast. Not to say we'd ever give her up because of it. She's just lucky she's cute! smile.gif

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 8

It could be the "terrible two's"  I have had a couple of mine go through them.  My boy, King Arthur, has his moments lately, as well (he'll be 2 in July) but his sister and littermate, Morgan La Fay, not so much.... So I think it depends on the personality of the cat?  My Phoebe is my wild child... She has calmed down a lot in the last year or so... But she was hell on paws from the time I got her to about 3 years old.  Not in a bad sense... But she was a hot mess... Into everything, tears up everything, crazy, crazy, crazy... But she is the sweetest little girl.  She just believes in living life to the fullest, that's how I explain her to people.  But she is a joy. 

 

King Arthur has been a brat lately.  He has his moments where I just grrrrrrrrrrrrr... But I love him.  He is still my angel boy!!!  Paige went through the terrible two's badly.  She was a witch in every sense of the word!!  Luckily, she also is doing a lot better this year.

post #3 of 8
More of a "teenager" stage than "terrible twos", I think. And, yeah, most kittens are crazy until they're about 18 months old. Some longer, some shorter. Some are crazier than others tongue.gif.
post #4 of 8
Thread Starter 

I forgot to mention that she's about 6 months old, she was born in November sometime. I just figured the "terrible twos" must coome sooner for cats ;)

post #5 of 8

6 months old so it probably means your "stormy" days may last for about 18 more months or so. bigwink.gif When I had 6 kittens all the same age, they were a handful but one in particular - Go - got himself into everything. Guess because he was the smallest, he wanted to prove himself to the others or something. 

"Terrible two" is a good phrase for a cat. Their first 2 years I think, is when they are the most curious, active, brave, defiant, I remember reading that cats turn the equivalent of a 24 year old human by the time they are 2 years old, which explains a lot about their behavior. smile.gif

post #6 of 8

Has the kitten been spayed/neutered?  If not, it may be time for that.
 

post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 

Oh yes, she was spayed when we got her...which I thought was kind of early...but it's been done.  Well thanks everyone, looks like I just need to keep my patience in check for awhile yet.

post #8 of 8

Kittens have a huge amount of energy to burn and also get bored easily, which is why I almost always have got two at the same time - they entertain each other far better than I can, and are far less inclined to bother older cats that want a quiet life.

 

Your kitten is also becoming a teenager, except unlike most human teenagers she is bursting with energy.  Think terrible twos crossed with hormonal teenager.

 

It's certainly high time to get her neutered which may help a bit, but she probably also needs a more interesting environment.  Some more (a lot more!) play with her with things she can chase might help (Da Bird and so on), and personally I would shut her out of the kitchen when I'm cooking so she can't hurt herself.  I would give the candles a miss as well until she's calmed down.  In my own home I always put the lid down on the loo, as the consequences of a cat slipping as it tries to drink don't bear thinking about. 

 

Do they have high places they can go?   More high places than cats?  Your older cats might like high places to get out of her way!  Mine are manic (they are Orientals so they never really calm down) and I've managed to cat-proof my back garden.  They love playing out there, and since I finished it a year ago I think they are calmer in the house.  They also love sitting where they can see out, and threatening the birds.  If you can manage some sort of safe outdoors with free access for them that might help a lot.

 

This is how one couple made their home fascinating for their cats:

http://www.thecatshouse.com/

 

And another take on environmental enrichment for cats:

http://www.fabcats.org/behaviour/cat_friendly_home/info.html

 

(This mentions beds.  My cats very kindly let me share their bed!)

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