Understanding Cat Behavior Around Children

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Most people who are turned off by cats just lack enough understanding of them. A cat’s behavior is almost as predictable as that of a dog’s. If they do not wish to have their stomach touched (most cats don’t), but you still insist in doing it, they may scratch you. If you grab them while they are frightened or panicky, they might interpret your intention to rescue as an entrapment and claw its way to be released. A cat does not exhibit aggression unless they sense their rights are being violated.

A very young kitten may attempt to cling to your ankle as you walk across a room or pounce at you out of the blue from a hideout. Anything that moves may be considered their plaything, and your leg is equally as irresistible as a mouse or a toy. Even so, by the time kitten is seven or eight months old, it can be relied on not to scratch any household member, as long as the family abides by the rule of tolerance which they’ve assertively established. They develop cunning and superb unaggressive defenses. If they do not wish to ride in your kid’s toy car, they will not tear off her arm.  Cats are excellent escape artists and will grab the first opportunity to remove their nimble body out of the toy and up the nearest tree. It would not be fair to describe cats as treacherous. They can also be trusted and more often than not, even predicted better than many humans.

While there may be isolated cases of cats that are “bad” genetically speaking, generally they’re highly adaptable animals. If you take home a litter, your new kitten can adjust to your family situation easily.  That includes your adult dog, a rowdy eighteen-month toddler, and a near-sighted senior who keeps accidentally stepping on him. Cats are typically tolerant, patient, and versatile.

Facts About Cats and Children

When it comes to pet cats relating with children, a well-adjusted two-year-old, when presented with a kitten, would typically respond with gentle, loving care that comes from a instinctive desire to protect a helpless, little creature. A child learns this from his surroundings and particularly, his parents. While, on the other hand, a child who is raised in a cruel environment may exhibit unkind or brutal conduct, it is somewhat predictable that he will show little care or regard for a kitten’s helplessness; such children shouldn’t have one. Typically the nurturing instinct prevails. Each time the child strokes the kitten, the cat’s behavior will be rewarded when this love is instantly returned. A mutual understanding will quickly develop between them.

A baby and a kitten are a lot less compatible though. However, a mature cat would accept the new addition to the family including the beddings that come with the new baby. Because of this, it’s not good to permit the family cat to be left alone in the nursery. He will greatly delight in sleeping in the crib near this warm, new life. The problem that turns out isn’t that the cat would suck the infant’s breath and suffocate him (a myth that originated from misunderstanding) but that in a moment of intense affection, the cat will decide to sleep on the top of the baby, a burden on the baby’s delicate body that is unbearable. If the infant is with other family members, the cat may be trained not to jump into the crib or onto your lap while you’re carrying or feeding the baby. Cats react well to modest scoldings and quickly learn right from wrong.


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