My 7 month old kitten doesn't suckle but instead chews and chews HARD. How do I get this to stop?
About 3 mos ago I rescued a 4 month old stray kitten. I was told the mother was feral and when they brought the mother and litter in the litter was only a few weeks old. They intended on spaying the mom, having her stay with the kittens until they reached about 7 weeks old and then releasing mom back out because she was feral. However, she died on the table. That said, my kitty wasn't taught some things most cats are (for example, she doesn't cover her poop). My question is this: While I know suckling is normal, especially for cats taken from their mom too early, my cat (Vienna) doesn't seek out skin to suckle. She seeks it out to bite down and chew. I will wake up to her in the middle of the night kneading, nuzzling me with her nose then the teeth come. Where does this come from? How do I get this to stop?
on Dec 26th 2012
in Behavior & Training
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Some kittens need to add more pressure when nursing to stimulate milk flow and do resort to biting. It could also simply be a strange behavior she has picked up on her own. Cats are notorious for playing happily one moment and biting the next out of over stimulation, it could be that your kitten is over stimulating her senses when she kneads and is experiencing a similar reaction. What to do: While having a kitten knead on you is an aw inducing sweet moment no one wants to be bit in a moment of pure happiness. When she does use her teeth try using a cue word in a high pitched tone, like "OW!" or "EEP!". This should startle her enough to make her stop in the moment. If it works and you are consistent with it the habit should be broken. One of my cats was declawed by his previous owner and now uses his teeth in play. I have used this technique with him and it has greatly decreased the biting. When he does bite and I remind him with an "OW" he immediately stops and begins to lick instead.
George answered on 12/27/12. Helpful? / 0