Positive Pet Parenting
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Error Free Kitten Raising Tips™

by Rolan Tripp, DVM and Susan Tripp, MS

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Dog vs. Cat - Which Makes the Best Pet?

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Getting Started - Setting Up House Rules

An ounce of prevention…

A common mistake people make with new kittens is allowing bad habits to form by not paying any attention to what the kitten is doing and learning from day one at home.

Supervise your kitten's activities so you can  instruct your kitten by praising what's right and interrupting what's wrong. Provide constant supervision indoors until ALL house rules are learned.  Keep your kitten in a small kitten-proof room when you can't supervise. 

Provide for your kitten's basic feline needs for scratching and stretching by providing tall scratching posts. Buy toys that mimic prey to provide mental stimulation, physical exercise and companionship.

Supervise exploration and you can help your kitten learn your house rules. Shape your ideal kitten personality by encouraging confident, relaxed, loving, friendly behaviors. Teach your kitten using praise, treats and extra loving attention for behaviors you want.

Ping, pong kitty

Call your kitten any time you have food. When your kitten has learned to come when you call, then try this game. Start with a hungry kitten and human partner. Sit on either end of a hallway with the hallway doors closed and the kitten with you. Take turns calling the kitten from one end of a hallway to the other.  Give the first treat for free to get the game going. If your kitten knows how to sit, give one treat for coming and a second treat for a sit.

Reinforce learning:  Call your kitten before every meal and before anything wonderful happens. Praise and give treats each time the kitten comes to you. 

Late Socialization: 9 to 16 weeks old[1]:  

  • Continues to learn social skills.

  • Social play peaks.

  • Social conflict over status may emerge.

[1] AAFP. (2004). Feline Behavior Guidelines.

Unwanted pet behavior is a leading cause of pet neglect, abuse, abandonment to back yard jails, surrender to shelters, and euthanasia 

For your education

Library Topics

Teaching Cats to Sit
Teaching Come


"Helping you raise a happy, well-behaved cat and a fabulous feline friend for life."

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