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How do I teach my 2 1/2 year old to not abuse the kittens?

This little boy is soooo mean to the kittens we have just brought home. He has continuously hit them with any objects he can get his hands on. I just caught him today throwing the kitten across the room and the little thing hit the edge of the coffee table. Its out of control and I/m going to lose my mind!! Time outs aren't working and I've even tried to explain, in a 2 yrs old manner, that this hurts the kitties and we don't hit, etc. he shoves them around, holds them around the neck to keep them put, picks up by the tail...AAAHHH!! HELP ME PLEASE!! Thanks...

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Asked by kahtya at 1:23 PM on Oct. 1, 2008 in Toddlers (1-2)

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Answers (6)
  • Take the kittens to a place that he can't get to him. Tell him that until he can be nice to the kittens then he will not be allowed to play with them or see them. Always supervise him with the animals until he is behaving properly.

    Answer by purvislets at 1:26 PM on Oct. 1, 2008

  • we have kittens and a 2 yr old right now too. lol. he still picks them up by the neck, but as soon as i tell him to drop them he does. I had him sit in my lap and i put a (sleepy,relaxed) kitty in his lap. and would say "this is how we touch the kitty" and took his hand and gently stroked its back. and would say words like "nice touch" and "be gentle". Then when he gets aggressive i say things like BE GENTLE, or BE NICE.
    honestly....sometimes it works, and some times i rescue a kitty from a choke hold. thank God 2 yr olds dont stay 2 for very long!!

    Answer by danyelle3 at 1:40 PM on Oct. 1, 2008

  • ps. i have to remind myself that kids (2 yr olds especially) dont know how to be good naturally! You have to teach them how to be good kwim?

    i think alot of parents make the mistake of treating a child like it was born with manners lol. and that they should just automatically know how to behave. if only it were that easy.

    Answer by danyelle3 at 1:42 PM on Oct. 1, 2008

  • my son tried to do that when we brought home a kitten... he still kinda does those things but we have had the cat for about 3 months now... useally he just wants to lay on her and feel her purr and she lets him but once he gets violent she runs...

    just yesterday he tried to use the sissiors on the cat... i told him its ouchies and then tried to cut himself and relised it did hurt so he didnt do it again.... (he didnt actually cut himself)

    I think kids learn best by experiance and guidance... u tell them something is hot but they wont believe u untill they experiance it themselves....

    Answer by navywifemomkoch at 2:10 PM on Oct. 1, 2008

  • My 19 month old is sometimes mean to the kitty (full grown) and his 8 month old twin brothers. I tell him it hurts them, and take his hand to pet the kitty or tickle brothers. I make sure to catch him sharing with his brothers, or kissing them or the cat and praise him. I tell him, "Oh, kitty/brother loves when you kiss them. It makes them happy, see the baby smile/kitty purr? I love when you're nice to them"

    I do remove either him or his brothers if he gets rough with them, sometimes I've "gently" whopped him with the toy he whopped them with. The kitty can defend himself, and has bopped him a few times. the kitty is great and knows he's a baby, so he's never left marks. It scares my toddler though and he runs off crying.

    You have to remember your son is a baby still, and like the other posters said, kids aren't born knowing things. They have to learn. He's not being mean on purpose.

    Answer by mommyonhawaii at 4:58 PM on Oct. 1, 2008

  • Well on a good note, you will have a really cool cat that will put up with anything! LOL! Thats a plus for me, I worked as a vet tech for a long time and cats that would put up with us usually had a boy or two in the household that "helped" raise them! Ha ha!

    Keep it supervised, always! Put the kitty away when the kid is not doing well. The cat will survive and probably thank you! Good luck! Gotta love our little boys! All the above answers are great too!

    Answer by MarynmomofColby at 7:14 PM on Oct. 1, 2008

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