Need Advice: Super Assertive Foster Kitten

Sara KangSara Kang Member Posts: 403
edited 22 January, 2009 in Behavior & Training
One of our new foster kittens is a beautiful Siamese Lynx point mix. Despite the fact that he is drop dead gorgeous with stunning blue eyes, the kitten has ADD apparently! He is staying in our large guest bathroom, and he keeps clawing at me to get my attention (yes, he uses claws, not just paws). he grabs my legs like a tree trunk and tries to bite me. He then bites my toys and won't let me even feed or brush off stray litter without him attacking my hands, feet, legs. Its only been since last Sat that we had him, but I am getting more reluctant to go in there and play with him. I know its important to them being socialized, so I do my best but I keep getting shredded. I am also worried this won't make him as adoptable? Will there be someone who wants a rambunctious, hands on kitten who needs a lot of attention? He means well b/c he is sweet, rubs up on me, and just wants love. He purrs instantly and doesn't stop even after you stop petting. But he never learned NOT to use his claws. And I don't know how to stop him, other than saying "STOP" or "NO" or "SST" which has minimal effect. His blood brother is the total opposite-- the sweetest lover and mellow lap kitten so I'm not sure if this was an early detachment from MOm thing. I can't even play with him properly b/c he slides all over the floor, and he claws at me accidentally!

Comments

  • Cassandra NoneCassandra None Member Posts: 406
    edited 21 January, 2009
    I think your foster is just anxious. Face it, his world just changed a million percent and it's only been a few days. Give him time and patience and TLC. Keep up with the training commands but please be patient. He's a goody - just confused and scared.
  • Tara WTara W St. PaulMember Posts: 939
    edited 22 January, 2009
    Yes yes yes.... I am familiar with this tactic and all I can say is thank goodness you'll have a chance to fix it while he's young and small! When the big Gordie monster came to live with us he had this same behavior, but was a strong adult cat. My arms and legs were bruised and bloody from claws and teeth. It took a lot of work to break him of the habit. He wasn't being mean... he just didn't know how to play nicely. So first thing to do is to show him that that behavior will definitely NOT result in playtime. Put him in a five minute timeout every single time he lunges, grabs, claws, bites or whatever behavior is unacceptable. After five minutes go back in and try to play again. If he starts being rough... say "no" and leave. Do it every time. He'll learn. He wants your attention, so he'll figure out that if he does that you'll leave. If he grabs on to your arm or leg with claws and teeth and you need to free yourself first of all don't freak out. Stay as still as you can, say "no", grab his scruff and hold him down on the ground. You don't have to be mean or anything. You're just showing that you're the bosscat and biting is not cool. Then leave for the five minute timeout. Remember that pulling away from him will cause him to grab on even tighter so just stay still, say "no", scruff, hold to the ground, timeout. You can do this! He'll be a sweet boy before you know it. Thank you for fostering kitties in need!
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