Pet Points: Will neutering my cat help aggressive behavior?


DETROIT"We have a new boy kitten and he thinks he's king of the house, he attacks the older cats and bites the dog… will getting him "fixed" solve my problem?"

Aren't kittens fun? Neutering your little boy kitty will help him both behaviorally and medically (he'll be a healthier cat) – so please contact one of our Michigan Humane Society veterinary clinics (www.michiganhumane.org) to get that scheduled.

In the meantime, I never like to just rely on the tool, or the medicine or the surgery (in this case). Nothing is a magic wand that just "poofs" away the challenging behavior. We have to invest a little work into it. In this instance, I'm going to assume the following: 1) Your kitten is not feral and is simply playing way too roughly (if he is truly attacking, we have a different concern). 2) Your kitten was separated from his momma and littermates when he was a tad too young and as a result just doesn't know how hard is too hard.

Now if my assumptions are correct, it's up to you to teach the young man how to behave properly. One of the very best tools you can have is a stuffed animal that is at least the size of your kitten and preferably a bit bigger – one that he can grab on to and kick at with his back legs. When he begins playing too roughly with you, immediately give him the toy. When you are available to supervise, you'll want to get him used to a little harness and tie a long string or cord to it. It is looks like he is going to "attack" the dog or cat, gently draw him back to you, and give him the toy. If he gets super out of control, a nice, large dog crate with some blankets and appropriate toys would be a good time-out spot for him.

Please, though, do not leave him unattended with the harness on or allow him to attack your other animals. He needs to be supervised until everyone can get along.  We are here for additional follow-up should you have additional questions - thanks for the great question!

About the Authors: