Making progress with aggression
What’s it all about?
One of the most common problems with an aggressive kitten is the 'petting and biting syndrome'. When you stroke her, she turns around to bite and scratch you. Why does this happen?
It is important to socialise your kitten from an early age to avoid problems with aggression. This is best done with gentle handling and stroking when she is young. A kitten has to be very relaxed and trusting to sit on your lap and allow herself to be stroked. Accepting and enjoying stroking is a learned response, which doesn't come easily to all kittens. To get her used to it and make her feel secure, it's good to sit quietly with her on the floor and stroke her until she feels calm. If she reacts, accept her wishes and stop. Repeat the exercise until she learns to trust you.
The best way to avoid aggression is to reward her for good behaviour with lots of attention and food and to ignore unwanted behaviour. If you know something in particular upsets her, just avoid it. If she still gets aggressive, just ignore her.
Being introduced to a new home is a big upheaval for a kitten, so she might get stressed and agitated. The best thing you can do to avoid any behaviour problems is to show her lots of affection and make her feel as comfortable in her new territory as you can. Remember that a new arrival can upset the balance in a house and even cats that have lived happily together for years may suddenly fall out, but don't worry, there's loads you can do to put a stop to aggressive behaviour:
If your little one still acts aggressively (especially towards children) even after you've done your best to make her feel safe and secure, have a word with your vet who can refer you to an animal behaviourist. Their expert advice can help bring happiness to your kitten and her home life.