Pediatric Behavioral Problems in Your Cat

By August 24 | See Comments

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Between birth and puberty, some kittens exhibit either extremely aggressive or fearful behavior. Such behavior is easily acquired and can be hard to change later on. Owners must take preventative measures in the early days when cats are most susceptible to environmental and psychological changes. There are no breeds that are avert to these behaviors, although research suggests that genetic factors can influence cats' behavior.

Symptoms

Pediatric behavioral problems may show up during play where, the cat is extremely aggressive. This includes extended claws, biting and general rough behavior. Aggression can also be a defense mechanism and cats usually hiss, flatten their ears and have dilated pupils. Fear is also a factor for these kinds of behavior. Another pair of symptoms that is usually seen as a problem is soiling in undesirable areas. Referred to as elimination behavior, it includes not using the litter-box and defecating in the house and other prohibited areas.

Causes

Often behavior problems are a result of the cats treatment by people. For example, perceived aggressive behavior towards humans maybe a result of not having anyone to play with. Aggressive behavior will be spurred by humans that spur the cat on with teasing and rough play. Fear can also be a consequence of rough play and handling by people. This includes correction techniques like hitting, spanking or yelling.

Treatment

Treating your young cats behavior usually does not require any medication or surgery. Proper handling and care go a long way in raising a healthy car. When trying to rid your cats of unruly behavior, try using toys, moving objects and play instead of physical punishments. Flicking, hitting, spanking and yelling all need to be avoided.Cats that have a problem adjusting to people usually get better when another cat is introduced into the home. Additionally, cats can be introduced to humans slowly and in a comfortable environment. Make sure to let the cat/kitten make the first move and that no one grabs it without initiation.If you notice that your cat is scared or becomes aggressive to certain stimuli , then figure out what the stimuli is. Figure out how you can reduce the stimulus's impact on your cat or get rid of it all together. Handling techniques, daily play and proper nutrition can help make your cat more peaceful and friendly.Generally, behavioral problems from the cat are a result of it's environment and the way it's treated. As such, make sure that your cat has positive experiences, especially when it is between 3 to 7 weeks old. If you have children, make sure they do not manhandle the cat or tease it unknowingly. If you're unsure what kind of techniques to use to encourage behavioral changes, always ask a vet.

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