Do I have a jealous kitten?

WestCoastCatGuardian

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Joined
Jan 2, 2022
Messages
12
Purraise
24
Location
Greater Vancouver, Canada
Hi,

I have a bonded pair of 17 week old male kittens that we adopted at the beginning of December. They do everything together, and they follow each other (and us) everywhere. However I've noticed a couple of things cropping up in Mercury (the short hair) in the last couple of weeks, and I'm wondering if it's something that I need to do something about.

- For starters, he growls at his brother when it's time to eat. I keep their food dishes separate by a few feet. When he gets to his dish first, he haunches over it, and growls. It's so strange. And the irony is that he likes to go over to his brother's dish and eat out of it, and his brother is totally chill and lets it happen.

- When I pull out the wand toy, if there is a new lure, he gets totally wound up, and hisses at it. Once he "catches" his prey, I let him go off with it, but if his brother follows, he growls when his brother gets too close. Is this normal? Even the hissing at the toy? He always seems interested in wand toy time.

- He's not much for cuddles or lap time...unless, he sees his brother getting petted, and then he comes over purring wanting attention too, but only because his brother was getting some, it seems.

They are still best of friends, and none of this seems to be spilling over into their bond so far. I just want to make sure that it stays this way.
 

Vali

TCS Member
Young Cat
Joined
Dec 19, 2021
Messages
75
Purraise
25
He probably growls at the foot because by nature they are territorial species and he may feel threatened. It’s best to seperate them whilst eating or try fix to seperate them then slowly putting them closer. Second one also seems like a case of territorial behaviour. Third is probably jealousy yeah
 

susanm9006

Resident Cat Willow
Top Cat
Joined
Feb 20, 2011
Messages
10,417
Purraise
22,540
Location
Minnesota
Some kittens have a strong prey instinct to fiercely guard their food and toys they love or have caught. Usually they outgrow this and it really doesn’t mean much. His brother doesn’t probably think anything of it and the two work it out. So I wouldnt be concerned or do anything differently.
 

danteshuman

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Mar 27, 2017
Messages
4,534
Purraise
5,164
Location
California
I’m wondering if they are neutered?

I agree with hopefully getting them to be able to eat a foot apart. However some cats are just really territorial about food. I’m not sure but it sounds like Mercury might be one. If that is the case feed them in separate rooms. If you leave dry food out, also place it in two different rooms so Mercury can’t guard it from his brother.

The cuddles? Lap it up! I have a grown cat that gets jealous every time I’m on the phone! He comes & demands attention! 🤣 Since Mercury isn’t that snuggly; I would cuddle his brother & ignore Mercury unless he asks for attention. Part of it is just their age. Let Mercury climb on you & sleep on you without petting him unless he asks for pets.

The play? Boy that takes me back! The favorite game of the 5 week old brothers was to play “kitten soccer”! One kitten would grab a poof/furry ball & despite there being plenty of other poof balls the other brother would chase/try to steal his brothers poof ball! I would play with the boys at the same time & 1 on 1. So try putting a wand toy in each hand & tossing small toys across the room or hallway for them to chase. Lock one boy out of the room & play with them 1 on 1. Then switch kittens and play with the other kitten. Clicker training during the 1 on 1 time is a great way to bond with the boys, teach them tricks & bond with them. After you teach the cats the trick on their own you can do clicker training together. It would also work to help teach Mercury patience & sharing about food. ⭐Some cats are noisemakers when playing and some are not. The boys sister growls like a demon when she gets a toy! The hissing I would ignore. It may be play noises, keep away or just toy hogging. When Mercury runs off with his toy; give your other kitten a toy like a small kicker toy or toss a mouse. Teach Mercury that you will always pull out more toys for the other kitten.


😻 What is your other kitten’s name? Pictures of cats are always appreciated on this site!
 
Top