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Cuddly Kitten Day: An Germantown, MD Vet Weighs In 
March 15, 2024

March 23rd is Cuddly Kitten Day! If you love our feline friends as much as we do, it’s probably safe to say that just the thought of cuddling kittens can put a smile on your face. In this article, a local Germantown, MD vet offers some tips on cuddling with little Fluffy.

Why Is It Important To Socialize A Kitten?

Socialization is crucial to helping little Fluffy’s personality develop properly. You want your tiny furball to grow into a friendly, adult cat. You’ll need to convince her that the world (or at least your home) is safe and fun. It’s important to expose your pet to different types of people and experiences. Otherwise, she may grow up to be wary, fearful, or even aggressive. (Note: With dogs, we also advise taking little Fido to different places. However, we recommend keeping kitties indoors, so we don’t advise this for them.) 

How do you socialize with your pet? Have your friends and family members come over to pet and play with your tiny buddy. Just talking to little Fluffy and handling her gently will also help. Ask your Germantown, MD vet for more tips on socializing your kitten.

When Should I Cuddle With My Kitten?

You may not want to hold your kitten while you’re cooking, cleaning, or working on something. Aside from that, there’s really no bad time to cuddle little Fluffy! 

Many Kittens 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 during the day.

You can also have your kitten sleep with you. Nighttime snuggles are great for bonding. They can also be relaxing, though that isn’t always guaranteed. Having a purring cat snuggled up for you can be very soothing, but a kitten that is batting at your fingers, jumping on you, or pouncing on you in the middle of the night isn’t exactly restful. Just be careful you can’t roll over onto your pet.

Are There Any Benefits To Cuddling Kittens?

Definitely! Spending time with our animal friends is always wonderful for our emotional and mental health. Our furry pals have a way of bringing us into the present, soothing us, and reminding us of what really matters. Fluffy isn’t stressed about bills or office drama: she just wants to hang out with you. 

As many of you no doubt have probably noticed, cuddling with a purring cat can be very relaxing. In fact, kitties often 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. Our feline buddies purr at specific frequencies: usually between I25 and 150 Hertz. Interestingly, these exact vibrations have been shown to have healing qualities: they help promote bone healing and tissue growth. They are even used in many physical therapy sessions.

How Can I Make My Kitten Super Cuddly?

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

Socialization is key here. You want little Fluffy 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.

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. 

Do All Kittens Like Cuddling?

 Actually, no. There are plenty of ‘spicy’ kittens out there. Age and history are both big factors. 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, this is much easier with a kitten than a full-grown adult. 

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 Do Kittens Bite And Scratch?

Little Fluffy is really just following her natural instincts, and learning how to use those claws and teeth. Remember, our feline pals are predators in the wild. They rely on those skills for survival. They usually aren’t too shy about using their humans to practice their hunting skills, either. This is pretty cute, but it’s also bad petiquette. In fact, it can lead to dangerous behavior down the line. Those little claws and teeth hurt!

Is It Normal For Kittens To Be Super Cuddly?

It’s definitely not uncommon. Young cats are quite small and fragile. Like all babies—both human and animal—they really just crave feeling comfortable, loved, and safe. In fact, cats also often think of their owners rather as second parents. This is one reason they knead us: that stimulates milk flow when they are nursing from their mamas. 

When Do Kittens Become Less Cuddly?

Many cats never grow out of it. That said, your feline friend 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 furry bestie 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. (She may also be a bit bratty at times.)  

However, that doesn’t mean Fluffy will stop snuggling: she’ll just fit that cuddle time in between bouts of mischief. (Don’t worry: this stage usually tapers off once cats are fully grown.) 

Are There Mistakes To Avoid When Cuddling My Kitten? 

The main thing is not to force attention on a kitty. 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. If your furry friend wants to get down when you are holding her, just let her go.  

Never hold a cat by the belly. That can actually cause internal injuries! Always use proper methods to pick your feline pal up and hold her. Make sure to support her weight properly! When it’s time to let go, put your furball down gently.

How Do I Stop My Kitten From Attacking Me?

If your pint-sized pal bites or scratches you, don’t let it slide: that will just make it harder for you to teach your pet good manners down the line. Instead, teach your frisky furball to redirect her murder skills to something appropriate, like a catnip toy.

As soon as your kitten bites or scratches you, reprimand her verbally. you can say ‘No’ or ‘Put your claws away’ or ‘Be nice’ or ‘Don’t bite.’  always use the same words or phrases. 

Don’t yell at little Fluffy: that could scare her!

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 kitty’s face or squirt her with water. Clapping your hands may also work. That will startle and annoy your feline buddy. When it comes to correcting bad behavior, those things tend to work pretty well at getting little Fluffy to think things over. They are definitely much more effective than punishing or scaring your pet, which may just make her wary of you.

Schedule An Appointment At Your Germantown, MD Animal Clinic

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