Here's how I do it.
- Hold and handle them often from the time their eyes open. Even small children, with supervision, can pet them. Make sure small children do not handle them alone.
- Hold them on their backs often. Remember how you held your baby dolls? They won't like it, but it helps prepare them to be handled by children and to be more docile.
- Play with them often—both inside and outside if they will be allowed both places.
- Speak and sing to them. Just get them used to your voice.
- Rub and play with their paws a lot. They don't naturally like it. It helps them learn not to scratch so much.
- Carry them around with you as you do things. I met someone once who suggested letting them ride on your shoulder as you go about the house. It's not one of my methods, but try it if you'd like.
- Teach them to use a litter box. Just put them in there shortly after they eat. They'll figure it out.
- Take them for rides in the car. They're going to take that first car ride sometime. Help it to be less traumatic for them and for their new owner. I actually took one in the car with me one day and unexpectedly ended up in a town forty-five minutes away. After over two hours in the car, Tiger became very compliant. In fact, after using all these methods, he was such a sweet butter in your hands kind of kitten, my husband, who doesn't like cats, decided to keep him!
- Take two— they're small. Seriously, if you are going to get a kitten, get two! They are so much easier to raise in pairs. All that crazy, high energy is channeled into playing with each other instead of attacking your legs, your furniture, and your favorite sweater. ~smile~ Instead of being double trouble, they are so much more fun to watch. Plus they're double the lovey cuddles!
- Lastly, pray over your kittens. God knows the perfect home for them whether it's yours or someone else's. Pray for the right home and for the right temperament for the kitten. God cares about the details of your life.
Have you adopted a kitten? Though these tips work best from the time they're tiny, give them a try. They may just help your older kitten to become your feline best friend forever.
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