Do You Have Questions About Your New Kitten?

Do you have a new kitten? Does your playful new kitten make it
hard for you to get adequate rest at night? Or does your kitten mistake the
living room carpet for its litter box?

If so, you’re not the only one who is having these problems due to
the adorable kitten running around your home! Here are a couple of Q & A’s
from other pet owners who are having the same troubles as you are! Q & A’s
courtesy of!

Q: My
girlfriend and I got a kitten over the
 summer. He is now 5
months old. We cannot sleep at all anymore. He tears all over our apartment all
night long and bounces on our bed over and over again. We put him on the floor
and scold him but he is right back again 5 minutes later. There is not a cat toy
on the planet that this animal does not have, so there is plenty to amuse him
in the rest of the apartment. We are going to neuter him next month. Will that
stop his behavior? Is there something else we can try? –Paul Richardson,
A: Neutering only
removes an animal’s desire to mate and any behaviors related to that. It
certainly will not stop your cat from being happy that it is alive and wanting
to share with you his joy in it.
Our cats usually
sleep all day when we are not home, so their day is just beginning as ours is
Your kitten has the
whole night now to run and play and cannot understand why you do not want to
join in. He figures that during the day you have been curled up somewhere
sleeping as he has been. You just have to close the bedroom door at night and
do not open it no matter what he does. Of course he will cry and throw himself
at the door all night long for the first few nights, but after a week of this
he will figure out that this behavior does not lead to anything. Only then will
he look for some other amusement to keep him busy all night, and you can sleep
in peace.
Q: I have a 5-year-old
female spayed cat, and a friend has a 1 1/2-year-old sheltie. The dog is
well-behaved and housebroken, but whenever the dog is brought to my house, he
wants to urinate on everything. He is immediately corrected and brought
outside, but as soon as he is brought back in he wants to repeat the process.
I’ve tried “Off”-type sprays, but they do nothing. I think it is the
cat’s scent that triggers the dog’s reaction. What can we do? –John Post,Aquebogue
A: You do not mention
if the dog is neutered. This behavior is rare in neutered dogs. It is usually
an intact male that feels the need to do this.
This is really not
an issue of training. The dog is following a deep instinct. He is not even
thinking about doing this — it just happens. He has the opportunity to do it,
and so he does. With careful management, you can deny him the opportunity. Keep
the dog on a lead when he is in your house. Monitor him constantly so that when
indoors he just gets used to the new smells without marking. You cannot let him
out of your sight. If you cannot watch him, put him in a crate. As the weeks of
this go on, he will become desensitized to all the smells of the different
environment, and since he has not been able to act out the instinct of marking
when he smells these things, he will no longer think it an option. The behavior
will become extinct. Then you can gradually allow him his freedom again.
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