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How do you get a cat to stop Biting?

By: Dr. Jon Rappaport

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Our question this week was:

My cat (2-years-old; we met 3 months ago) was declawed (front) by a previous owner (she has had several). I suspect she was also encouraged to play roughly, as she bites hard enough to draw blood. Currently, I just stop playing and withdraw when she sinks her teeth in. Do you have other suggestions to discourage the biting?

Karen C.


Answer

Hi – thanks for your email. You wrote that you have a 2-year-old cat that plays hard- bites had and can even draw blood. You asked – how do you get her to stop? Currently – you wrote that you stop playing and withdraw when she sinks her teeth in. That is perfect. Withdraw from her and ignore her when she does this. Don't hit or scream at her. If she is playing "nice" – give her tons of attention and positive reinforcement.

I'd recommend that you get some different toys that she might like such as the feathery flyer. It has ends that mimic the motions of a bird – others that have mouse like ends. Get her to play and use her aggression toward the toys. I'd not play with her in a manner where she can act out directly on you.

Articles that might be helpful to you are Aggression in Cats and Play Aggression in Cats.

Best of luck!

Dr. Jon







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