How to Teach a Kitten to Be Loving

Gently hold and pet your kitten starting when she's about 2 weeks old.

Gently hold and pet your kitten starting when she's about 2 weeks old.

With those sweet kitten purrs and those innocent eyes, it's not too difficult to see how much love a kitten holds in her heart. Socializing your kitten early on will help her to adapt to her environment and understand that people are her friends.

Begin Socialization Early

Begin socializing your kitten when he is between 2 and 7 weeks old. According to the ASPCA, a kitten will be receptive to socialization beginning at this point in its life. Gently handling your kitten, softly petting him and using a calm voice around him are all purr-fect ways to help him get used to people. Having positive experiences of both people and other pets in the household will ensure that he is well adapted in the future. Avoid separating a kitten from its mother before 4 to 6 weeks of age. A kitten's mother is the best example he can have when it comes to learning how to be a cat.

Limit Handling Time

Place kittens back with their mother and playmates after a few minutes of handling. As tiny as kittens are and as new as the whole world is to them, a little stimulation by humans goes a long way. On the other hand, too much of a good thing in this situation could mean that the kitten becomes traumatized or anxious because she was kept away from her mother and littermates for too long. Limit handling time to a few minutes at a time. Allow kittens younger than 2 weeks of age to stay by their mother at all times. If she is out of the room for a few minutes, it's OK to pick up them up momentarily.

Introduce Toys

Introduce an array of fun toys to your kitten starting around 4 weeks old. Many kittens and cats are tempted to play with moving fingers because they look like fun. It's important to keep in mind that your tiny kitten's harmless scratch at your finger as a kitten could hurt quite a bit more when they get bigger. Toys will encourage your kitten to play and refrain from batting at or pouncing on your quick-moving fingers and hands. Toy mice and fishing pole toys can provide lots of fun and entertainment for active and curious kittens.

Limit Time Alone

Limit the time your kitten spends alone. Although it is impossible to be with your kitten at all times, try to avoid leaving him locked up in a room for long hours. This can lead to a very hyper kitten who may pounce and bite after being left alone for so long. A kitten who is left alone with no mental stimulation for hours on end has no way to release energy, especially when he is confined to a small space such as a bathroom. Just like a puppy, kittens need playtime.

 

About the Author

Pamela Miller has been writing for health, beauty and animal health/welfare publications for seven years. Miller holds a Bachelor of Science in Organizational Communication from MTSU.

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