During the first weeks of life, the little kittens learn a lot about how to behave from their mother and in fact also from their siblings.
But it is still necessary for humans to get involved in raising the kitten. The mother cat does not raise the kitten directly to adapt it to human reason and etiquette.
As a human being in a kitten’s environment, it is you who must make it understand that the curtains, wallpaper and sofa are not there to sharpen your claws.
Therefore, it may be helpful for you to understand why your cat has certain behaviors. When the cat sharpens its claws on wallpaper, curtains and other things in the home, it marks its territory with scent glands in its paws.
People do not feel the finely tuned smell, but so do other cats and other animals. At the same time, the cat sharpens and cleans the claws to the outside and stretches and stretches the body.
In other words, sharpening the claws is a completely natural behavior. Of course, your dear little cat must be allowed to continue to do so, but not on the interior, but on a claw tree or on a claw board. You can usually make it clear if you have a little patience, empathy and calm.
Raising kittens is childishly easy – but you probably also need a little luck
It is also important to know that cats are solitary animals and not herd animals. Therefore, they do not look at the people around them as alpha animals. And for that reason, they do not necessarily always follow what people want to give them from upbringing. In addition, different cats have different abilities to obey. In principle, it is good to raise kittens if you have a few tips in mind:
- It is important that you react immediately to your cat’s behavior. If the kitten e.g. has gone up on the table, puts his nose over the edge of the table or sharpens his claws on the sofa, wallpaper or curtains, you simply say firmly and yet softly “no”. Then you lift the cat down from the table and possibly put it down on the claw tree, if it has sharpened its claws.
- Place the claw tree or even better the claw trees in one or more places where it is easy for the cat to get to. It is also recommended to place the claw trees near furnishings on which the little cat is happy to sharpen its claws. You can also entice it to use the claw tree further if you spray some catnip on the tree.
React immediately to the kittens’ behavior
You only have one to two seconds to react to the kittens’ behavior. It is important to stay within this time period so that the cat connects your negative or positive reinforcing reaction to its last action. All the consistent and immediate actions you take that are coupled with a positive reinforcement of all the good things your little kitten has done, usually have a quick and sustained effect. Then the kitten will adopt the rules that you set up.
Let the kittens stay with the mother for a long time
It is especially important to leave the kittens with the mother for as long as possible. Proximity to the mother is important for the little cat’s physical and mental health. If you remove the kitten too early from the mother, it can, among other things, make it much more scared, which leads to a poorer quality of life for the cat and a poorer opportunity to raise it. The little kittens are simply more receptive if they feel safe and mentally balanced.
Aids to provide positive reinforcement
You can use different aids when raising kittens. Some cat experts think you should use clicker. You can get very good results with clicker training where you use so-called cursor sounds to reinforce good behavior in the cat. Actually, all cats can be raised with clicker training, but even here there can be individual differences in how much upbringing each cat can absorb.
Clicker works with the distinctive sound that the aid produces. In the cat’s normal environment, there is no such sound. Clicker gives the cat an immediate positive reinforcement that it has just done something right.
In connection with the clicker, you again have a short time, one to two seconds, to e.g. reward the kitten with some dry food.
Clicker training is also used in situations where you want to teach cats to do tricks. For example. this is also used during filming where cats are involved. If you have taught your kitty the basics of a common harmonious life with the help of clicker, then you can usually use this on larger tasks and succeed with it. Many cat owners even teach their cats small pieces of art with clickers.
Reward with snacks and pats
However, not all cat experts think that it is good to have an aid that has a sound that sounds like Easter bangs. Some people find it a little too impersonal to use clicker as a parenting method. It is important to be able to build a deep relationship and a relationship of trust with your dear little family member.
Clicker critics think that you should only use food, pronounced praise and pats to let the kitten know that it has done something right. In this way, you show the cat genuine joy for good behavior.
With positive reinforcement, you achieve rapid and lasting positive changes in the behavior of the miss. However, it is absolutely not recommended to use penalties such as water spray because it can ruin the relationship of trust you want to build. Building a trusting relationship is a must in a successful cat upbringing.
If your cat does something that you do not think is good, it is best to immediately say a clear and unequivocal “no”. At the same time, you should remove the cat and put it gently down on the floor, in the basket, on the claw tree or similar if it is on the kitchen table, workbench or other places where it must not be. Usually, your cat understands this fairly quickly.
Kittens quickly become housetrained
The little kittens also usually learn to go to the cat toilet in a short time.
But still, it is important to point out that a cat can obviously have a small accident when it learns. If this happens, you should not get annoyed, but react gently and patiently and then simply put the cat on the cat toilet. Talk to it kindly and maybe pat it on the head a little extra. Then you can discreetly retreat so it can do away with itself without anyone standing and watching.
If one of the little kittens is on the toilet, this is usually an invitation for the other siblings. As soon as one has seen one of the others on the cat toilet, it also goes there. Quite often, two kittens walk on the cat toilet at the same time. Later, however, the cats should have their own toilets.
Do not pet the cat for too long in one place
Even if kittens and cats like to be petted, their sensory receptors can be overstimulated by cuddling it too much in one place. This can lead to the kitten after a certain time showing that it becomes too much. You should take this into account and refrain from patting it in the same place for too long.
We wish you a pleasant and harmonious time together with the cat – both as a kitten and later as an adult cat.