Aggression in cats is often dismissed, especially as they are smaller and considered less dangerous than certain dog breeds. However, if your feline friend is developing a hostile streak, it can be very unpleasant and lead to bad habits later in life.
You already provide them with love and affection, and took the time to compare cat insurance to get the best plan for them, now it’s time to look at a few remedies for their outlandish behaviour:
Why do they become aggressive?
There are numerous reasons why your kitten may be acting aggressively, including:
- They are fearful of something;
- They have a health problem;
- They are genetically predisposed to hostility;
- There have been environmental changes, or;
- They are exhibiting predatory behaviour.
Kitten hostility can make it hard to live with them, so it’s important to spot the signs early so that you can deal with the problem. If your cat is exhibiting any of the following then it may be time to do something about it:
- Excessive staring;
- Gritting their teeth;
- Arched back;
- Ears pulled back;
- Raised hair on their back;
- Attacking with teeth & claws;
- Attacking other animals around the neck;
- Dilated pupils;
- Marking their territory through spraying or chin rubbing;
- Holding their tail straight up.
It is imperative that you pay attention to their language, especially with kids in the home, as they can be especially dangerous towards them.
What causes their aggression?
There are numerous types of aggression that different situations cause. These include:
- Eye contact: Is a key flame for aggression. Kittens view eye contact as a hostile act, which can be as simple as two kittens happily playing before one makes eye contact and bang, the less dominant kitten is making a run for it;
- They are in pain: Pain is another reason for kittens acting aggressively. They might be trying to cover up a medical problem, which is another reason why you might want to take them to the vet if they display continued aggression;
- They might be experiencing mental trauma: This could be the result of an incident you may not know about;
- They are playing with life-like toys: This is quite normal and typically not something to worry about, and;
- Territorial aggression: They may think something/someone is trying to enter their territory, and they can be incredibly territorial.
How to deal with their aggression
As there are different causes for their aggression (territorial, a medical problem etc.) you should always take your kitten to the vet to find out exactly what’s happening.
A medical check is vital for aggressive cats, especially as it could be the result of a serious medical concern. Certain medications can affect your cat’s susceptibility to hostility, and dietary changes can also help with the problem, especially as certain commercial kitten foods have grains and cereals that can cause behavioural issues in felines.
Regardless of what is causing the problem, it is important to work closely with your vet to diagnose the issue and create a proper treatment plan to deal with the problem.
We hope this guide to kitten aggression has helped you understand if – and why – your cat is acting with such hostility. Whilst it’s not a pleasant thing to have to live with, we love our feline friends, and the last thing we want is them to be shamed because of an underlying health concern!
So, don’t hesitate to take them to the vet as soon as you notice they are exhibiting such unpleasant traits – it may be the result of something much more serious than simply acting out…