Ask an expert

16 Jan 2004

Kittens behaviour
I love my kitten-but enough is enough already!!!!
He is very, very affectionate-actually I would go as far as to say DEPENDANT! He follows me everywhere-even to the toilet-if I keep the door closed he cries, then screetches till I open the door & if I do let him in he wants to sit on my lap! When I bath he wants to sit on the side of the bath with me. When I come home from work he runs to me, jumps & claws his way up to my shoulder & sits there. If I walk around he is under my feet all the time, If I sit down he doesn't want to sit on my lap he wants to sit on my chest & he meows very very loudly when he doesn't get his own way! When I leave for work He iether runs after me & I have to make ten trips trying to get him back inside the house or he sits at the door & wails for almost half an hour. While I am away at work he terrorises my grandmother (who lives with me) in the exact same way. He cannot stand to be alone!!! What is wrong with him? I have another cat who was nothing like this as a kitten & is nothing like this as an adult!!
Answer 388 views

01 Jan 0001

Hi "Annoyed"
You don't say how old your kitten is, but it is possible that he will grow out of this behaviour in time. However you need to do something now to help him get over it. This is known as over-attachment and is unusual in cats, but can be due to a kitten being removed from its mother too early. What you need to do is spend some time each day at home, but in another room from him. You can either close the door or get a crate or cage to put him in. Start off with a minute or two per occasion and gradually increase the time he is alone. You can give him special toys, catnip or even a drop of Rescue Remedy each time you do this to calm him down or distract him. The most important thing is to ignore him completely, even if he scratches or cries. Try to time your return with him being calm, not while he is "performing", if possible. You grandmother will need to do this exercise too. When he demands attention you must try not to give it to him as he needs to learn that meowing does not bring rewards. When he is quiet go to him and give him some attention or a treat. Give him toys he can play with on his own and things to climb and scratch on. You need to encourage independence.
Karen Gray-Kilfoil
The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical examination, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.