A cat with a taste for ankles

DorkmanDorkman Registered User regular
edited December 2010 in Help / Advice Forum
Meet Olliver
OlliePics004.jpg
OlliePics002.jpg
OlliePics012.jpg

He is 1 year and 1 month old and is still quite a rambunctious little fellow. Hunting us while we sleep, chasing around a piece of packing strap that we have had for about 6 months now, and just being awesome.

However, he has had a habit for a while that we can't seem to shake, and that is the random, indiscriminate attack on ankles.

Generally it will occur in the bathroom while we are getting ready, but sometimes he just seems to be in the mood to walk over your foot, take exception to your foot being underneath him, wrapping himself around said foot and sinking claws and teeth in. It is obvious that it is just play as he has never drawn blood or broken skin, but the GF and I are at a loss as to how to break this habit.

We tried the high pitch yelp, the physically removing him from our feet, the walking away, but it doesnt seem to break it. Furthermore, water does absolutely nothing. As you can see he is incredibly furry (That TAIL!) so I don't think he feels most water bottle shots. Most of the time he runs away because it is water, decides to wash himself of this water, and then come back for more.

Once we break this habit, we can break his annoying habit of knocking over any bucket he sees as they collect rainwater that is leaking in through out apartment ceiling! :lol:

Thanks PA!

Poke Black 2 FC: 0390 6923 7158
Dorkman on

Posts

  • EggyToastEggyToast Registered User regular
    edited November 2010
    Does it hurt? When my cat does that (which is relatively rare), I love it because it's cute -- but it doesn't hurt. For me, what works when they're playing with me but getting too rough is to growl. A low growl in the back of your throat should perk your cat up that "hey, this isn't cool." And it's easy to do. Growling is sort of the standard animal way to say "I'm kind of pissed off, you know."

    If he does get it, you can then move on to hissing, since, you know, that's a step up in cat speak for "hey back off!"

    If acting like a fellow cat doesn't stop the habits, then you might have to move into mamacat territory. Mamacats don't have squirtbottles -- they pick the cat up by the scruff and move it somewhere else, potentially with a paw on its head or body so it can't get away. Obviously not to hurt it (and if you do pick your now full-size cat by the scruff, make sure you support his butt so you're not hurting him), but enough to say "Hey, I'm the mamacat, you get a time out."

    The last step is typically to get another cat.

    EggyToast on
    || Flickr — || PSN: EggyToast
  • mtsmts Dr. Robot King Registered User regular
    edited November 2010
    or he will learn pretty fast when you accidentally step on him a couple times.

    mts on
    camo_sig.png
  • VisionOfClarityVisionOfClarity Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Oh man, I can't get over you having a Maine Coon named Olliver when I have a Maine Coon named Dinah. They were clearly meant to be.

    But Maine Coons are active little fuckers (and they can grow until they're 5.) Mine has been feet and ankle pouncing for about 2 years now. Water will not bother a Maine Coon unless it's a lot of water. Don't grab his scruff because if you don't know how you can hurt him. We've managed to get her to cut back by grabbing her when she does it and pushing her away then ignoring her. When she's really bad and does it too aggressively she gets a time out in her carrier. She used to pounce all the time but now she mostly sticks to her toys (get him a cardboard box) and only jumps on us when she's feeling super playful.

    VisionOfClarity on
  • DorkmanDorkman Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    I would rather not use the carrier as a punishment. We have a hard enough time getting him in there when we have to take him somewhere, and I would rather try to make that easier rather then more difficult.

    As for the attacks, yes they can hurt. He does tend to play fairly rough, even when just petting him his first reaction to "I have had enough" is to nip. We have tried to physically push him away or move him away with a stern "No" when it occurs, but if that were working I would be doing this. :D

    As an aside, he isn't a Maine Coon. He's a Tabby dressed up as a Maine Coon. Although we have suspected he may have some Maine Coon blood in him. Or fur on him. He really is a tiny little guy.

    Dorkman on
    Poke Black 2 FC: 0390 6923 7158
  • HeirHeir Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Hiss very loudly and forcefully when he attacks.

    Sure it may not hurt, but visitors to your house may not like it.

    Alternatively, I've used air dusters (cans of compressed air) to scare them off too. My cats used to do this a lot. Most of the time they don't anymore. One of them is particularly stubborn though.

    Heir on
    camo_sig2.png
  • hatedinamericahatedinamerica Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    I'm gonna say the exact same thing I say in every cat thread, because it's the only thing I've seen that worked well and instantly:

    vinegar water

    apparently cats hate vinegar, so put a little bit of vinegar in some water in a spray bottle and just give 'em a squirt. They'll probably quit it.

    We had a seriously dysfunctional kitten for a while who would not stop attacking potted plants and pooping in them. So we gave them a light spritz of vinegar water and the cat never went near them again. Your results may vary.

    hatedinamerica on
    steam_sig.png
  • EggyToastEggyToast Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Dorkman wrote: »
    We have tried to physically push him away or move him away with a stern "No" when it occurs, but if that were working I would be doing this. :D

    Yeah, that's for dogs, not cats. For cats you have to think like a cat.

    When my cat was biting me too hard, I bit him back. He stopped biting so hard after that (he'd still play, of course, but definitely mellowed when he realized that I could bite back -- with a much bigger mouth). Of course I never hurt the guy, and biting around his, uh, rib-area meant there was plenty of skin so I didn't catch him in a painful way, but biting him back definitely worked for the "too rough" stuff.

    For the "no, don't do that," growling and hissing has worked for me. It's not universal, though. It definitely worked better when I got another cat. Of course, getting another cat calmed him down quite a bit too, since he had a buddy to attack and play with.

    EggyToast on
    || Flickr — || PSN: EggyToast
  • VisionOfClarityVisionOfClarity Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    He definitely has some Maine Coon in him, he looks exactly like my little (12lbs) girl!

    One thing that helped was yelling at her when she was bad. Just once loudly. It startled her and made her stop what she was doing.

    And being consistent. For a year she was allowed on our bed but I grew tired of her shedding on my comforter. By consistently removing her from the bed when she got on it (and by not letting her in the bedroom when we weren't home) we got her to stop jumping on the bed in about a week.

    VisionOfClarity on
  • DelzhandDelzhand Hard to miss. Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    EggyToast wrote: »
    For me, what works when they're playing with me but getting too rough is to growl. A low growl in the back of your throat should perk your cat up that "hey, this isn't cool." And it's easy to do. Growling is sort of the standard animal way to say "I'm kind of pissed off, you know."

    I have a 3 month old Abyssinian that has learned to growl but not meow. She'll carry a catnip mouse around in her teeth, and if anyone gets near her (including our year old tabby), she'll emit this low growl that sounds like a phone set to vibrate on a hard surface.

    It's cute.

    Delzhand on
    Steam|FFXIV|Switch SW-3472-4893-0802
  • NargorothRiPNargorothRiP Registered User
    edited December 2010
    eggy is right our cat randomly spazes out and goes from loving and cuddle to attack with no warning. hiss and rumbling works most of the time. however the thought and image of you biting your cat is funny as shit, and kinda disgusting. i cant imagine biting him =p

    NargorothRiP on
  • Namel3ssNamel3ss Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    Is getting one more cat a possibility?
    When we got kittens, we got 2 so they could keep each other entertained while we are at work. I'm so very glad we got 2. They are very energetic and I think would be very destructive if they didn't have each other; but since they do, they pounce and wrestle all the time and generally leave the house in one piece while we are gone.

    Although one of them, we named Shadow, is always at your feet when he is somewhat sleepy or hungry. I have never seen a cat so determined to rub his face on your ankles/legs while you are trying to walk. If I was an elderly person, both the cat and/or I would be dead for sure.

    Namel3ss on
    May the wombat of happiness snuffle through your underbrush.
  • DorkmanDorkman Registered User regular
    edited December 2010
    We will have to try the growling thing. And hopefully get this behavior gone before we take him home for christmas. I dread trying to explain to our parents/family why we are growling at our cat.

    We would like to get him a buddy, however we live in a small two bedroom apartment, so we would feel bad cramming more bodies into the space as is. Maybe once we get a house we will consider it.

    Dorkman on
    Poke Black 2 FC: 0390 6923 7158
Sign In or Register to comment.