My Cat Bites! How Do I Stop Her From Biting Me?
There are many reasons why a cat bites – here’s what you can do about it
Do you have a rambunctious kitty who often mistakes your hands and fingers for chew toys? Cat bites can be painful, not to mention upsetting. You should take the right steps to train her that biting isn’t okay and that she should be chewing on his toys instead. We’ve laid out some tips that will help you teach your cat that biting isn’t allowed so that you can interact with her without having to worry about her teeth sinking into your skin.
Establish the Right Types of Play
No matter how old your cat is, you should establish right away that your hands aren’t toys and, therefore, should never be bitten. Cats like to bite down on things when they play, whether it’s a string or a catnip toy or even another cat, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that they would do the same to your fingers and hands. Even though it may be tempting and may seem innocent enough to let a tiny kitten chew on your fingers, don’t let her get into this bad habit. Otherwise, once your kitten grows into a full-grown cat with big fangs, you’ll regret it.
Figure Out What Triggers the Biting
Sometimes you can prevent biting altogether by simply figuring out what triggers cat bites. For example, does stress cause your kitty to become defensive or aggressive? Perhaps she becomes uneasy when friends are at your house and you bring her out for everyone to see him. Or maybe your cat becomes a little too aggressive if children in the family start playing with her too roughly. Try to examine your pet’s behavior closely whenever cat bites occur, taking note of what was going on at the time of the biting so that you can pinpoint a potential cause. If you notice a trend, you will be able to take steps to reduce the stress, defensiveness, or aggressiveness that leads to the biting.
Get Plenty of Toys or a Companion for Your Kitty
If your cat becomes bored, she may lash out and begin biting in an attempt to release pent-up energy and act out natural instinct to hunt and kill prey. Providing a variety of toys is a great way to help get her energy out, get some much-needed exercise, and pretend to be the predator that she was born to be. If this doesn’t work, consider getting your kitty a fellow feline that could be her companion whenever you aren’t home. This tactic, combined with the toys and daily play sessions, will prevent boredom and, provided that your cat adjusts well to the newcomer, may also prevent biting.
Assert Your Dominance
When it comes to training felines, positive reinforcement is always the way to go. This is because punishments and scolding may cause your cat to become frightened and stressed, and may not even be effective in training your cat to change her behavior. So, instead of swatting your cat or shouting at her when she bites, you can try clapping your hands and asserting your dominance by staring directly at her before leaving her alone for a few minutes. You should also say the word “no” in an assertive manner. The key is to be the dominant figure in the house without frightening or stressing out your cat. This is easier to do if your pet is neutered or spayed, which is another great reason to get that done once your kitty is old enough. And when your cat does behave and play well, be sure to reward the good behavior in order to reinforce it.
Cats don’t always bite to attack, so it’s important to maintain your patience and try to figure out what exactly is the root cause of the biting. Is your pet bored, is she stressed or scared, or was she brought up to think that it’s okay to bite a human as part of a play session? Understanding feline behavior is difficult, but there are ways of getting your kitty to be relaxed and happy enough to never feel the sting of cat bites.