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  • Feb 8th, 2021 2:09 pm
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Member
Aug 22, 2012
434 posts
405 upvotes

Cat biting

We got a new kitten around 6 weeks ago, he's about 3 months old now.. We love him! He's super cuddly when hes tired or relaxed, but sometimes a switch is flipped and he is a full on biter and we don't want that to continue into adulthood.

We've been trying all 3 of the following methods:
1. replace our hands with toys
2. Pull him away while hissing or yelling in a loud tone
3. putting him immediately on the floor (least effective it seems)

None seem to be really helping. I know he's a kitten and uses his mouth to explore, but we want to teach good behavior and aren't sure of the best way to do so. He bites my girlfriend much more than me, I assume it's a display of dominance as well
12 replies
Newbie
Oct 20, 2011
79 posts
64 upvotes
Toronto
Enforcer22 wrote: We got a new kitten around 6 weeks ago, he's about 3 months old now.. We love him! He's super cuddly when hes tired or relaxed, but sometimes a switch is flipped and he is a full on biter and we don't want that to continue into adulthood.

We've been trying all 3 of the following methods:
1. replace our hands with toys
2. Pull him away while hissing or yelling in a loud tone
3. putting him immediately on the floor (least effective it seems)

None seem to be really helping. I know he's a kitten and uses his mouth to explore, but we want to teach good behavior and aren't sure of the best way to do so. He bites my girlfriend much more than me, I assume it's a display of dominance as well
This is fairly common. The best way is a time out. Watch Jackson Galaxy on Youtube.
Deal Expert
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May 22, 2005
20389 posts
5843 upvotes
GTA
I offer my fingers and hands to my cats and when they bite, i move my finger horizontally further into their mouth, which makes it uncomfortable for them. I keep doing it and they've stop biting cause they know if they bite, that hand/finger is going further into their mouth. It seems to have helped but timeouts is also good.
Sr. Member
Oct 1, 2003
639 posts
395 upvotes
Vancouver
Happened to me with my kitten.

We got her when she was about 8 weeks old (I think) from SPCA. She is almost a year old now.

At first, we would never play with her with our bare hands, only with toys. She would still sometimes bite when my hand comes near her. So, that didn't really work.

When she bit me, I would yell "Ouch" and pretend to cry, to show she hurt me. That didn't work either. Maybe her intention WAS to hurt me.

Bought her "chew/teething" toys. Ignored those.

Like I said it has almost been a year (11 months) now, and in the last week, there is definitely less biting. From daily to about once a week.

Not sure if what I did above helped, but thought it might give you some hope, that maybe she just needs to "grow out of it".

At the time, all I could do was hope, as everything I tried didn't seem to work.
Jr. Member
Apr 30, 2020
194 posts
198 upvotes
Vancouver
my older kitten is a biter. now that i'm used to him, i know what makes him bite and what doesn't.
he doesn't like unsolicited pets, but once he comes to me for pets then i can just go to town on petting him and no bites at all.
sometimes he still will randomly bite even still, but i can generally detect it and then sort of toss him off me and stop the playing.
i got a second cat so hopefully it helps him understand that bites hurt.
Deal Fanatic
Jul 7, 2017
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Just testing the quality and freshness of his emergency rations. Nothing to worry about.
I smile when I see container ships sailing past my house laden with stuff made in China
Deal Addict
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Jul 19, 2012
1941 posts
314 upvotes
Canada
My 2 previous cats were sometimes biters
The one I have now doesn’t bites at all.
Deal Fanatic
Jul 7, 2017
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Re: my post 2 above, I was in bed this morning when my foot was batted and clawed (gently) before I felt 4 fangs sinking (very gently) into my big toe.

Went out to the kitchen after I got up to find that the wet food bowls were empty (as much as an entitled bred cat's bowl can be) and the dry food bowl of the cat who bit me was almost but not quite empty (there was still dry food in the other cat's bowl). Just goes to show biting is assaying the state of emergency rations.
I smile when I see container ships sailing past my house laden with stuff made in China
Jr. Member
Apr 30, 2020
194 posts
198 upvotes
Vancouver
yeah.. my cats aren't allowed in my room for that exact reason. i like sleeping peacefully.
Deal Fanatic
Jul 7, 2017
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resare wrote: yeah.. my cats aren't allowed in my room for that exact reason. i like sleeping peacefully.
But what if something happens to you and the cats can't get to their emergency rations until someone comes to check on their welfare and rescues them?

I smile when I see container ships sailing past my house laden with stuff made in China
Deal Addict
Jan 28, 2014
3652 posts
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Toronto
thriftshopper wrote: But what if something happens to you and the cats can't get to their emergency rations until someone comes to check on their welfare and rescues them?

Very true! Years ago we had a cat who loved to bite. She actually would purr and be delighted with herself. But she only bit men - she wasn't afraid of them at all and loved to cuddle with my husband and his male friends. But she did love to bite them. I was safe! But she did come to me when she wanted something - as did every single pet we have had over our several years together.
Banned
Oct 8, 2020
59 posts
13 upvotes
my pet used to do this as a kitten. i think the best solution and what worked for me is to bite them back whenever they bite you. this will let them; know its painful and to stop it. it will take some time but it works, and lots of ppl online also used this method including lots of guide experts on youtube
Jr. Member
Apr 30, 2020
194 posts
198 upvotes
Vancouver
my cat was the worst with this, but now hes like wayyy wayyy better.
he bit until he was maybe 7-8 months, now he's about 14 months and he almost never bites.
some of the problem is the owner. you have to understand what your cat likes and what it doesnt.
if you pet your cat a certain way and it really likes it but then starts to bite you, then you've prob overstimulated it.
if you pet near its tummy and it reaches for your hand to bite it, then don't pet there anymore.

i found that the best way was not to scold too strongly, but just remove yourself from the situation completely.
if my cat bit me i would just say ow, then move immediately to the other side of the couch and withdraw from him.
he would sit there confused for a bit and then eventually after doing this many times he got better.

i did the same thing for my 2nd kitten, she was not a biter at at all until she hit maybe 3-4 months old, then she started biting frequently.
i did what i explained above and within just 1 week i completely curbed her biting habit to be non existent.

never use your hands as toys, that's just the most obvious thing.

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