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Cuddly Kitten Day: An Oshawa, ON Veterinarian Weighs In 

March 15 2024

One of the most adorable pet holidays on the calendar is coming up. March 23rd is Cuddly Kitten Day! If you love cats, as we do, it’s probably safe to say that just the thought of cuddling kittens may be enough to put a smile on your face. A local Oshawa, ON vet discusses snuggling little Fluffy in this article.

Is It Normal For Kittens To Be Very Cuddly?

It’s definitely quite common! Young cats are quite small and fragile. Like all babies—both human and animal—they really just want to feel comfortable, loved, and safe. Our feline pals also often think of their owners rather as second parents. That bond needs to be nurtured, though. Taking time to snuggle your kitten can help her feel safe and cherished.

At What Age Do Kittens Become Less Cuddly?

Many cats remain cuddly their entire lives! Fluffy really may never grow out of her love of cuddling. That said, she may be a bit more rambunctious during her tween and teen phases, which are roughly from age six to about 18 months. At this point, your pet will act quite a bit like a human teenager: she’ll want to test your boundaries, and may be determined to show off her independence. However, that doesn’t mean she won’t enjoy snuggling: she’ll just fit cuddle time in between bouts of mischief. Don’t worry: this stage usually tapers off once Fluffy is a full adult.

How Do I Make My Kitten Super Cuddly?

This one really comes down to building trust. It’s important to teach your pet that she will always be safe with you, and that you’ll never hurt her. 

Socialization is key here. You want your pet to get used to being held and handled, and to be comfortable with it. Pick her up, pet her, talk to her, and offer toys and treats. Many cats also like to sleep on their humans. Letting your tiny furball snooze on your lap or in your arms can also go a long way toward making her feel loving and affectionate.

You don’t want to force attention on a kitten. Even if little Fluffy is ridiculously cute—as many kittens are—it’s important to remember that baby cats are quite small, and can easily get scared.

Of course, it’s also important just to take good care of your pet. Offering good food, a clean litterbox, kitty toys, playtime, and perhaps some cat furniture will all help get that motor going. 

Are All Kittens Cuddly?

 Actually, no. There are a few things that come into play here.

 Purrsonality does factor into this: some cats are just more aloof than others. We’ve also had some pretty ‘spicy’ kittens.

Your pet’s history also matters. Kittens that were raised underfoot often tend to be more amiable and trusting than rescues. If a cat was born stray or feral, it may take her more time to come around and get used to people. However, that doesn’t mean rescue kittens aren’t cuddly. Many are initially wary but become little purring cuddle bugs once they realize that humans are safe.

Why Does My Kitten Bite And Scratch Me?

There are a few reasons for this. The biggest thing is that little Fluffy is just following her natural instincts and learning how to use those claws and teeth. Remember, our feline pals are predators in the wild and rely on those skills for survival. They usually aren’t too shy about using their humans to practice their hunting skills!

This is cute, but it’s also bad petiquette. In fact, it can lead to some pretty dangerous behavior down the line. Those little claws and teeth are sharp! Nip those bad habits in the bud.

How Do I Get My Kitten To Stop Attacking Me?

If your pint-sized pal bites or scratches you, then you’ll want to address the matter immediately. Don’t let it slide: that will just make it harder for you to teach your pet good manners down the line. What you want to do is teach your frisky feline to redirect her murder skills to something appropriate, like a catnip toy.

As soon as your kitten bites or scratches you, reprimand her verbally. It doesn’t really matter what you say: you can say ‘No’ or ‘Put your claws away’ or ‘Be nice’ or ‘Don’t bite.’ These are just a few examples. The main thing is to always use the same words or phrases. Also, don’t yell at little Fluffy: that could scare her. Just use a disapproving tone of voice.

Next, walk away and ignore your little buddy. Cats hate it when their humans ignore them! This should get the point across. If not, you can blow in your pet’s face or squirt her with water. Clapping your hands may also work. That will startle and annoy your feline pal. When it comes to correcting bad behavior, those things tend to work pretty well at getting little Fluffy to reconsider things. They are definitely much more effective than punishing or scaring your pet, which may just make her wary of you.

Why Is It Important To Socialize Kittens?

Socialization is key to little Fluffy’s personality. You want your kitty to be friendly, so it’s important to expose her to different types of people and experiences. Otherwise, she may grow up to be wary or even aggressive. With dogs, we also advise taking little Fido to different places. However, we recommend keeping cats indoors. 

You can have your friends and family members stop over to pet and play with your tiny buddy. (We suspect it won’t be hard to convince them.) Talking to little Fluffy and handling her gently and frequently will also help. Ask your Oshawa, ON vet for more tips on socializing your kitten.

When Should I Cuddle My Kitten?

There’s really no bad time to cuddle a kitten, assuming your hands are free! Of course, you may obviously not want to hold your kitten as you’re cooking or cleaning, or otherwise working on something. Generally, any time you’re feeling relaxed is fine.

Kittens also often enjoy snuggling up with their humans at night. In fact Fluffy will adjust her busy napping schedule to suit yours. For instance, if you work nights, she’ll still sleep next to you in bed. 

Those nighttime snuggles are great for bonding. They can also be relaxing, though that isn’t always guaranteed. While having a purring cat snuggled up for you is very soothing, a kitten smacking at your fingers or pouncing on you in the middle of the night isn’t exactly restful.

Are There Benefits To Cuddling Kittens?

Absolutely! Spending time with animals is wonderful for our emotional and mental health. Our furry pals have a way of bringing us into the present. Fluffy isn’t worried about bills or office drama: she just wants to hang out with you. 

As many of you no doubt realize, cuddling a cat can be very relaxing. In fact, cats are now often used as therapy. Many kitties seem to know instinctively when someone needs a hug. That’s why you can now find therapy cats at many hospitals and hospices.

There are also physical benefits. Cats purr at specific frequencies: usually between I25 and 150 Hertz. Interestingly, these vibrations have been shown to have healing qualities. They are even used in many physical therapy sessions.

What Should I Not Do When Cuddling My Kitten? 

As mentioned above, the main thing is not to force attention on a kitty. If Fluffy wants to get down when you are holding her, just let her go. 

Also, don’t hold her by the belly. That can actually cause internal injuries! Always use proper methods to pick your feline pal up and hold her. When it’s time to let go, put your kitty down gently.

Make An Appointment At Your Oshawa, ON Animal Hospital

Do you have questions about your kitten’s health or care? As your local Oshawa, ON animal clinic, we are here to help!

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Cuddly Kitten Day: An Oshawa, ON Veterinarian Weighs In 

One of the most adorable pet holidays on the calendar is coming up. March 23rd
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