Are you bringing a new kitten into your household? Congratulations! Little Fluffy’s kittenhood is not only almost unbearably cute, it’s also a crucial phase of her development. Just like human childhood, a feline’s youth is when she develops her opinions and personality. You can definitely influence your kitty’s character as it emerges. In this article from your local Miami vet, you’ll learn how to bring out the best in your little ball of fur.
Use Positive Reinforcement
Negative reinforcement rarely, if ever, works on kitties. Fluffy tends to follow her own natural instincts, so she won’t understand why she is being punished. Therefore, negative reinforcement can backfire, and can even cause your cat to become nervous or even aggressive. It’s perfectly acceptable to tell your kitty ‘No,’ or ‘Stop!’ but you should never yell at or scare her. Instead, use rewards to mold Kitty’s behavior. Food and praise tend to work well. Your cat may not understand what you’re saying, but petting her, praising her, and offering up a tasty snack will help form positive associations.
Offer Proper Options
Rather than try to get your cat to ignore her natural inclinations, redirect them. If Kitty tries to attack your hand, for instance, tempt her with a toy instead. If your furball scratches your carpet, focus her attention on a scratching post. Be firm and consistent, and your little furkid will learn proper kitty manners from the start. Never offer little Fluffy your fingers or toes to play with, and don’t encourage her to pounce on your feet. This might be cute while she’s little, but it will only lead to trouble when your furbaby grows up. Don’t let your kitten bite or scratch you, as this will just lead to bad behavior down the road!
Choose Which Behaviors To Enforce
You can definitely influence your furball’s character while she is young. For instance, if you answer your kitty when she meows at you, you’re encouraging to vocalize. If you let her snuggle up on you when she gets sleepy, you’ll likely wind up with a lapcat. The more you cuddle, speak to, play with, and pet your furbaby, the closer she will bond to you, and the more interactive she will become.
Please contact us, your local Miami vet clinic, for all of your pet care needs.