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  • Gayle Hand


Updated: Apr 16, 2020

Respect your new kitten/cat's need for privacy and freedom. Let her approach you when she is ready for affection rather than trying to pick her up when she isn’t interested. Invite her to sit with you by calling her name and patting your lap where you would like her to lay. Teach children to do the same. Avoid being abrupt or rough, do not use hands in play. Avoid using hands in play. It is best to get into the habit of utilizing toys on strings or flexible poles for play. (For safety, hide toys with strings when not in use and supervise small children with poles. Sewing thread and needles are especially dangerous if swallowed by your kitten/cat. Do not keep houseplants such as Poinsettia or Lily that are poisonous to felines). Cats can play rough and what seems tolerable for a kitten to do will hurt you or your children when he's grown. Please remember he should never be punished for what is normal cat behavior like climbing and scratching. Punishment won't change these natural instincts but it can make a cat fearful and spiteful. Use behavior modification to redirect his needs. Provide a scratching post and always praise and stroke him when he uses it. For inappropriate behavior (like scratching the furniture or jumping on counters) a little squirt with a water pistol is a good aversive measure to use.

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