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Normal or Not

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
My female cat (1-1/2 years old) lost her mother when she was 3 weeks old and was weaned on a bottle. Ever since we adopted her at 8 weeks old she likes to curl up next to me, start kneading like crazy, and sucks on her own nipple, purring up a storm the whole time. This lasts for about 5 to 10 minutes. She can do this up to a total of 10 times a day.

Is this normal? Should I try to stop her from doing this?
post #2 of 6
I think she'll grow out of the suckling, but most cats that knead continue to do it into adulthood. I don't think you need to do anything about it.
post #3 of 6
Sucking on her own nipple? That`s one I`ve never hear before...although it sounds harmless. Cats do the darnest things sometimes, don`t they?
post #4 of 6
My 4 year old Scarlett, also orphaned at 3 weeks old still suckles (on our t-shirts and sweatshirts). She loves it, isn't harming anything, and we don't try to stop her. Some of them never outgrow it.

I would check her nipples to see if she is doing any damage - I would think not - if it hurt her she wouldn't do it. If there is redness and swelling, then I would definitely try to redirect her when she does this. Give her a soft t-shirt or something that isn't going to shed materials.
post #5 of 6
It's because she was seperated from her mother at such an early age. It is not unusual for cats who were seperated at such a young age to have inapropriate suckling behaviors. Sometimes they suck other kittens genetals, people's earlobes and other things such as thier own nipples like you described.
The behavior probably will not stop. She's just comforting herself and im afraid you'll probably just have to get used to it.
That's why it is best not to seperate kittens from momma and littermates untill they are about 12 weeks old.
post #6 of 6
I used to have a cat years ago named Patches that sucked earlobes, but he evetually grew out of it. Some do, some don't.
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