Dc are 6 and 8, because we've lived in rented properties and weren't allowed pets they've never had any experience with animals apart from occasional supervised contact with my mums dogs. New landlord took over our property at the beginning of April and was more than happy for us to have a pet as he and his wife are animal lovers, so me and dh decided to get a kitten. She's beautiful, very friendly, cuddly and playful but the Dc won't be in the same room as her She's 11 weeks old and we've had her since 8 weeks and I'd hoped that things would be getting better by now but both Dc go to there rooms to avoid her
They say that they're scared that she will scratch them and they don't like it when she's running around, they're ok with her when she's sleepy and will stroke her if I'm holding her but it makes me sad that they're not bonding with her.
I've come to the conclusion that they may never love her but I want them to learn to live with her. Will things improve or am I expecting to much? Any tips on helping them to get over their fear would be much appreciated.
Well that's very extreme, StitchWitch, and I'm a little at a loss on it - I can appreciate children who might not be used to cats being occasionally a little taken aback by/tentative with a lively kitten but for both of them to actually take to their rooms to - apparently - actively avoid it when it's awake?
Might I ask what their behaviour is like in other aspects of your life? My instincts are telling me that the kitten might be a focus for expression of problems and not the problem - but that would be a little outside the focus of this board.
They can be a bit unpredictably crazy and scratchy at that age (kittens not children ) - my 2 found our kitten a bit too much when he was a few months old & trying to playfight with them and in fact the little one (aged 3 at the time) didn't like the kitten for quite a while. I remember his favourite game was to launch himself at me from the sofa when I was standing - a good 3 feet or so across the room - and Velcro himself to me with his claws. It really hurt and I was taken by surprise on numerous occasions. Kitten's now 10 months old and a fair bit calmer, DS1 (6) adores him, DS2 (4) still not too bothered. We did make sure no one used their hands as a "plaything" for the kitten as we didn't want to encourage him to attack hands or feet.
My cats were a couple of years old when my eldest was born so he grew up with cats, was always very comfortable around them. They'd even let him stroke them sometimes.
He was absolutely petrified of the kitten my sister got when he was about 7 though! Way too unpredictable with all that darting around and claws. Roll on ten years and we're getting a couple of kittens ourselves in a few weeks and he can't wait.
Maybe get some toys on a string and play with the kitten and let the kids watch. Can be v funny and fun and maybe they will want to join in? Also helps kitten let off steam so won't be so energetic or scary..?