Raising Kittens
By Bob Evans

You mention the raising of kittens, and the need to appropriately condition them to humans.

When our kittens were born (February 1998) we handled them quite a bit, holding their tiny bodies in the palm of our hands, and let them climb all over us as we sat on the floor with them. And, yes let them "taste" us with their little sharp teeth as they licked and nipped at us.

Having been a very long time cat companion and fancier, I knew this behavior was normal, and did not over react or, as kids might do, smack the kittens to "get even." I gently let them bite me, scratch at me and generally climb up my clothes to be on top of me.

As a result, these kittens, now 9 years old, love to have their bellies rubbed, and frequently turn over on the floor just to entice a rub now and again. They love to climb on top of the chair I am sitting in, frequently falling asleep across the top as I type on my computer.

And they let me pick them up and put them down without the least struggle. After all, I never drop them, or hurt them in any way and they fully trust me, no matter what I do. The brother and sister generally let me pick them up together, but this is the first time I held a cat sandwich. The tan one is the Boy, Gabriel, but we call him Boo-Bear. The grey "tuxedo" cat is the female, we call her Sacajawea, or Sachi for short. While being held this way, neither one complained, tried to get away, or struggled in any way. They just lay there until I put them gently down on the floor.

Oh, and they always let me blow raspberries in their bellies.

They do get back at me by gently pawing at me three minutes before my alarm goes off in the morning, to make sure I get up to feed them.

Copyright 2007 - Robert Evans 
As submitted to: The Problem Cat