How To Stop Your Cat From Biting You

Published: 14th July 2008
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Cat biting can quickly turn playtime with kitty into an unpleasant chore. So, what can you do about this problem? First, you need to identify if this is a new behavior - has kitty always bitten and scratched hard when playing with you? If this is a new behavior, there may be an underlying medical condition. Perhaps kitty has some kind of abscess somewhere, and you keep on poking that painful spot when you play with it. It is advisable to take your cat to a vet for a thorough checkup, just in case it is something worse.

In the absence of any underlying medical condition, perhaps you have simply overstimulated kitty. This is probably the case if you can usually play with your cat normally without being bitten and scratched to the point of bleeding. There is no cure for this. All you can do is to be alert for a change in behavior when you play with your cat. If it suddenly flattens its ear and hunches its body, this is a sign that you should stop playing. For its own reasons, playtime is no longer fun to kitty and it wants to stop. If you fail to respect it desire, then it will attack you. Simple as that.

If your cat always plays rough, always biting and scratching too hard, then this is a symptom that it was taken from its mother and littermates too early. Properly socialized kittens quickly learn that rough play leads to stopped play, so they learn to moderate their strength when biting and scratching. Fortunately, in this case, all you need to do is re-train kitty not to bite or scratch too hard. Every time it causes you to bleed, you stop playing. Eventually, kitty will learn to control its strength.

This last behavior may not involve cat biting and scratching, but can still be dangerous and troublesome. This has to do with kitty's hunting instincts. You may find that your cat likes to ambush you when you are busy doing your chores, or just before you go to bed. Partly, it is just exercising its hunting instincts, and partly it just wants your attention. Your first step is to put a collar with a bell on kitty. This way, you will be warned whenever your cat is trying to ambush you, and you can be more careful. Sure, the collar may not be comfortable for kitty at first, but it certainly beats having you fall down the stairs and ending up in traction. Your second step is to have a fixed schedule of playtimes with kitty. One of these playtimes should be before your own bedtime, so that you can bleed off your cat's excess energy.

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