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my biting cat is part velociraptor

This is a place to gain some understanding of cat behavior and to assist people in training their cats and dealing with common behavior problems, regardless of the method(s) used. Keep in mind that you may be receiving advice from other cat owners and lovers...not professionals. If you have a major problem, always seek the advice of a trainer or behaviorist!

  


Member Since
01/08/2012
 
 
Purred: Sun Jan 8, '12 7:30pm PST 
Schmitty is 8mo old. He picked us out at the shelter when he was 2 months old. From day one he was active and engaged. He never hid or avoided us, and was instantly at home. He has a harness and leash to sit on our balcony with us, but we live in an apartment building and it isn't safe for him to be out by himself. His indoor life might be a contributor to his maddness, but he has a myriad of toys, treats, and climbing/hiding playhouses. The issue is Schmit has 2 speeds... asleep, or mostly so and bloodthirsty. He bites. Not a playful nip, Schmitty will viciously attack your face, legs, arms at the drop of a hat. We used to put him for time outs, but he started destroying things. We tried a squirt bottle, but he's in love with water. Most of the time if we admonish him, push him away from our bleeding limbs, or tell him NO! he will wait til we sit, or turn around and come back for a "revenge attack" He will bide his time and stare with crazy eyes til he sees our guard drop and then it's on.
We are covered in scars, but we love him, and hope he's just a kitten with too much energy. (he does let us snuggle and pet him, but it isn't long or often.) However, the amount of bleeding he draws, and the ambush attacks after he's been told no are getting very very old.
Any one have a suggestion?
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ZACK

BLACK is- HANDSOME
 
 
Purred: Sun Jan 8, '12 8:17pm PST 
wave

Ouch!

Is Schmitty neutered? That would be my first question. And if he isn't, that might help.

Have you thought of getting a kitty friend for him? Then he would have somecat to play with and get some of that playfulness out of him and keep him busy. 2 cats have so much fun together.

cat on moon

Also if you get a chance watch "My Cat From Hell" on Animal Planet. The new season started yesterday and you should be able to catch a repeat. The behaviorist Jackson Galaxy covers alot of problems and fixes to things that might be bothering the cats that humans don't realize and that is why they act the way they do.

Edited by author Sun Jan 8, '12 8:22pm PST

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Scmitty- Admiral- Ackbar- Robbins

Schmitty - "the beast"
 
 
Purred: Sun Jan 8, '12 8:49pm PST 
Schmit was neutered at the shelter before we got him at 2 months old. He was always active and playful, but this biting thing has gotten out of control for the last few months. like i said in my post, it's his revenge attacks after we tell him no or squirt him. we tried a pharamone collar, and calming treats, but they did little to nothing.
i'll watch the show you suggested. thank you so much for your response. wave
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Scmitty- Admiral- Ackbar- Robbins

Schmitty - "the beast"
 
 
Purred: Sun Jan 8, '12 8:54pm PST 
also, i forgot to say that we can't get another cat as much as i want to. my boyfriend, room mate, myself and schmitty share an upstairs apartment that is very small with no safe outside for the cats to play.
thanks for the suggestion though (hopefully we will move to a house with a yard in the next couple of years)
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ZACK

BLACK is- HANDSOME
 
 
Purred: Sun Jan 8, '12 9:48pm PST 
Schmitty is adorable. In his main picture, you can see a bit of the beast in him. laugh out loud

He sounds like a great cat otherwise besides the biting. But the biting is bad and a habit you do want to break which is why you posted. I hope someone else has some good suggestions for you to stop this behavior. Usually I would think a cat would bite when they want you to stop doing something like petting them too long or holding them when they don't want to be held etc to tell a human they have had enough. They don't have too many ways of saying "no". Some people like to hold cats like babies and cats do not like that as they feel very vulnerable and will likely bite then. But to bite alot would be out of control.

Here is a preview of The Cat From Hell's new season.

The Cat From Hell

Edited by author Sun Jan 8, '12 10:01pm PST

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Scmitty- Admiral- Ackbar- Robbins

Schmitty - "the beast"
 
 
Purred: Sun Jan 8, '12 10:12pm PST 
thanks!
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Emily

Don't pet, play!
 
 
Purred: Mon Jan 9, '12 5:53am PST 
We never dealt with a biting problem as serious as yours, but with 3 teenage kittens in the house mommy did have to teach us not to bite humans while we were playing. She would redirect us to a toy (Kong Kickeroo) and we would bite, scratch and bunny kick that toy to death. She would even touch it to our belly to encourage us to attack the toy.

Also, mommy has never tried this but has read about "scruffing" and hissing at a cat like a mom cat would when their play gets too rough. I don't feel qualified to describe it, but you could google "scruffing a cat" and read about it.

If time out doesn't work, I'd probably leave the room myself before being subjected to a revenge attack. Good luck. He sure is cute.
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CK Angel- Ryder- Knowles

I'm a Carolina- Kitten in New- York!
 
 
Purred: Mon Jan 9, '12 1:15pm PST 
He must be CK's cousin. We deal with many of the same issues. We have many battle scars. Many. We brag about them! smile

That said, here is what we do. We do use the water bottle, and as that doesn't work with your little guy, you might want to try this:

1) When CK starts getting too wild, it's usually a sign he needs more engagement with us in a different way. We have a a series of little stuffed animals he plays with. One is a beanie babie kitten. The other is s small beanie baby duck that makes a jingling sound.

2) Kittens regard everything that moves as prey, and their play is geared toward skills they would use if they were hunting. Instincts run deep with cats. Get a 'da bird' and play with him. tie a stuffed animal to a piece of twine and drag it along the floor so he can chase that instead of going after you.

Positive engagement and distraction is always better than negative. However sometimes you need to speak with them in a language they understand. When he nails you, yell OW! very loudly. Don't try to pull away, it will make him bite harder. Make a loud noise and again say NO!!! and provide him with the toy instead.

When CK won't stop doing sometihng, or is defiant, we HISS at him. I recently started doing this when he started bothering Bella, who wasn't feeling well. My husband growls at him, and we notice he seems to understand this. When I hiss, he stops and backed off a step or two. When we were cutting his nails and he started getting very aggressive because we were holding him when he didn't want it we covered his eyes with a towel and when he went to bite, my husband gave a deep growl. Now a mother cat will growl to say 'stop' and you know, it worked. He stopped and was reduced to meowing til his nails were trimmed (we weren't hurting him, he just didn't want to be contained).
CK doesn't go out either. He does have plenty of company, but sometimes they don't want to bother with him. We do have a large 6 foot cat tree we find helps becuase he has a place to climb, play and nap. My hsuband says sometimes he resembles a monkey they way he climbs it and races around on it. That might work for you.
All the best. Believe me, I understand.

CK's Mom, Deb
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George (AKA- "Monkey")

1227467
 
 
Purred: Fri Jan 13, '12 7:13am PST 
My mom has had other cats with similar problems, and (while I'm an angel and have never had this happen to me) she says that hissing, if the kitty is out of reach, or scruffing, if the kitty is within reach, has proven very effective at stopping that behavior.

As Deb mentioned, both of those actions are what mother cats would do to let her baby know she was displeased. Sometimes my mom even had to hiss at the kitty WHILE she was scruffing him!

I will caution that, if you are scruffing an adult (or heavy) cat, do NOT lift them into the air when you scruff them, or if you do need to lift them, please support their body weight with your other hand! Scruffing does not hurt a cat as long as it's done properly! smile
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Scmitty- Admiral- Ackbar- Robbins

Schmitty - "the beast"
 
 
Purred: Sat Jan 14, '12 11:33am PST 
smile thank you all so much for the great advise! we have begun "scruffing" and hissing to correct his behavior and while i can't say as it's turned him around it has certainly made schmit look at us in a different light before he attacks. i hope that with continued use and diligence schmit and his humans will learn to live in a blood thirsty free home together.
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