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PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2017 6:46 pm 
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Bengal Kitten

Joined: Sun Jan 22, 2017 2:43 pm
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Hi everybody,
One month ago I became an owner of second in a row Bengal kitten. Lio( the one with who I started experiencing problems) is completely different than Sheila when it comes to a temperament. Frankly speaking we weren't ready for such a challenge. Sheila is calm and peaceful, she is not making mess around the house as her little brother does. Lio is very curious and confident. He likes to stick his nose literally everywhere- withouth regards to dangerous consequences ( like the time when he nearly touched hot kettle). We liked his confidence in the beggining but now it seems like the main source of our problems with Lio. Lio doesn't want to use his litter box( sometimes he does sometimes not), destorys everything in the house including cabels from computer, headphones etc. He doesn't listen when I try to discipline him. Sometimes he even comes and try to hit me or my boyfriend with his paws or when I try to tell him 'no' with my finger he will come over and express his opinion by hitting it. Plus his very anti-social he doesn't like to be taken in hands or stroked. I have a feeling that instead of a domestic cat we have a wild animal . Is there anything I could do to try to change his behaviour when he is still young? I read through the internet that a loads of people can't handle bengal's temperament and as a result they are getting rid of kittens. That's not an option as deep inside we love him too much to let go.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2017 7:27 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat
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Joined: Thu Dec 02, 2010 1:00 am
Posts: 4145
Location: Portland Oregon, USA
Lio's behavior is far more typical for Bengal's than Sheila's. Realizing that would be a big step in "solving" his "problems". Getting upset with him, and disciplining him is not going to solve anything, except to make him confused and resentful of you.

Lio is a typical Bengal, and has a big need to explore, and learn, and train to be an adult cat. You can't discipline any of that out of him. Trying to do that is just going to frustrate both you and him.

Lets take them one by one:

1. Lio is very curious and confident. He likes to stick his nose literally everywhere- withouth regards to dangerous consequences
This is 100% on you. You have to expect him to do that, and if there are dangerous consequences, you need to remove the possibility of him getting harmed. Most Bengal parents consider such "Bengal-proofing" to be an important checklist item prior to brining him a Bengal.

2. destorys everything in the house including cabels from computer, headphones
See #1 above. Again, this is on *you*. Trying to discipline him is pointless. Would you discipline a toddler for doing the same?

3. He doesn't listen when I try to discipline him. Sometimes he even comes and try to hit me or my boyfriend with his paws or when I try to tell him 'no' with my finger he will come over and express his opinion by hitting it

Three things: a. he's not associating what he did with the behavior you are exhibiting (your ill advised attempt at disciplining him)
b. he's trying to put a positive spin on it and giving you the benefit of the doubt and trying to make it into a game (either that or he's reacting angrily to your hurting him, and I'll assume that is not what is happening).
c. he's probably more frustrated and confused about your behavior than you are about his.

4. Plus his very anti-social he doesn't like to be taken in hands or stroked
If you read the forum, you'll see that this is really common for a Bengal kitten. But again, this is on you. You have to understand his needs, and try to meet those needs, and then bonding can begin, and over time, depending on how he has been treated, he could become a much more affectionate cat. But when you get a Bengal cat, you shouldn't expect a little cuddly tiger looking kitty who is just going to quietly sleep in your lap all day. You should expect more of a crazy, athletic, silly, fun cat that creates all kinds of havoc but is extremely fun, endearing, and entertaining. He has a *big* personality, which is a good thing. And with a little work, you can channel all those things that are annoying you into activities that are more amusing than destructive. Behind every "no" there has to be a "yes", and the "yes" activity has to be at least as appealing to him than the "no" activity.

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2017 8:14 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Sun Feb 02, 2014 8:11 pm
Posts: 1178
Everything Brian said!

Re the cables, get some bitter apple spray. Everything else - it's time to get really tidy and minimalist. Put things away like headphones etc. Anything left lying around will be thoroughly investigated by a Bengal and 'checked' for durability!

How many litter trays do you have? Are they scattered around the house? He's a baby so you need to make sure he can get to one easily. Just like babies, kittens will have accidents, or bengals will be so engrossed in whatever mischief they're up to, they don't realise they need to pee until it's too late.

Things getting broken or damaged is going to happen unfortunately so anything you value highly should be put away.

Bengal kittenhood can be a challenge, but eventually they do calm down a little.... Not much though :lol:

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PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2017 8:37 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:42 pm
Posts: 640
Everything that Brian said.

Then everything that Tabitha said ( especially the bitter apple spray ).

:-)

If it is accessible, it is chew-able. If you want it chewing, leave it accessible.

For the stroking/being held - my 2 didn't always want to be picked up and were often far too busy to be stroked - the trick is "softly-softly catchy monkey" - wear him out with play and give him a little stroke, treats ? add in a stroke. Sneak in a stroke here and there. If you pick him up for a cuddle respect his decision if he wants to immediately get down - if he trusts you with that he is more likely to feel safe in your arms and want to stay there next time. Conversely, if he wriggles to get down and you try to stop him, he will associate being picked up with feeling unsafe and restricted. It isn't easy when you want to give him a cuddle, but you have to move at a pace that suits his little kitten brain.

For discipline - saying "naughty Lio" means nothing to him - if he misbehaves remove all attention, all play stops. At the moment he will see your finger as a game, which if not checked, will become a reward for whatever he did to get the finger. As it stands, you are not disciplining him, but teaching him that the unwanted behaviour leads to fun play, which is ace. At least for Lio. If he feels like playing, he'll remember how to initiate it.

Quote:
Frankly speaking we weren't ready for such a challenge


There's two of you and one of him - I had a ratio of one human to two sweet, gorgeous, wouldntchangethemfortheworld little monsters. It can be tough, but enjoy the crazy, zooming, intelligent, sweet, unbelievable energy of a bengal kitten.

( oh and they do calm down somewhat over time )


Good luck, and keep us informed.


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PostPosted: Thu Feb 09, 2017 8:51 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:42 pm
Posts: 640
Nearly forgot - WEAR HIM OUT

Get wand toys or Da Bird/Flying Frenzy. Play with him until he is on the floor panting unable to move a muscle, give him a minute or two to catch his breath, then do it all over again and again and again - he'll have a first wind, second wind, third wind then finally a shorter forth wind. Play him out till he totally ignores the toy.

You've just bought yourself 15-20 mins of quiet bengal kitten.

Enjoy them and use them wisely. :-)


When my 2 were kittens I couldn't write a shopping list. At the first sign of the pen, babbage would try to steal the pen out of my hand and Ada would try to steal the piece of paper. - utterly frustrating when you just want to write a bloody shopping list. Last week I took apart a laptop and fixed it without locking them out of the room - things eased up as they got older. The need to run around for 4 hours causing utter chaos when you get in from work eases.

But you did get a bengal kitten.

(typed with Babbage laid out on my hands, purring, between me and the laptop ) :-) :-)


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PostPosted: Fri Feb 10, 2017 6:48 pm 
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Asian Leopard Cat

Joined: Thu May 23, 2013 2:21 pm
Posts: 8150
First of all, you have to remember that bengals are like two-year old children! Male bengals may be a bit more of a handful than females.

Most bengals do not like being picked up, held, or cuddled. It's not part of the breed, generally! The first thing I read about a bengal is that it is not a lap cat -- and mine won't sit on my lap for a million dollars.

Getting into everything? Bengals are really curious cats! Any time I get up to do something, Raiden will somehow wake up from his nap, perk up and have to get up and see what it is I'm planning to do. I have an outdoor cat that could care less. He lifts his head and goes right back to sleep!

Wires and cables can be dangerous, so you must protect them. Make sure you have so many toys that he can play with and you need to be involved in the action.

You have been used to having Sheila -- and then you get Lio, who appears to be a little hellion on wheels. That is the chance you take when you acquire a second cat.

As for the litter box issues -- do you have THREE litter boxes for your cats? One per cat, plus one extra? This is a problem in multi-cat households. Bengals insist on clean litter boxes at all times. Location of the litter boxes is important as well. They require privacy to use them and easy access in and out.

Still, it hasn't been that long that you've had Lio. You have no idea how this whole no environment thing is affecting him. He's trying to tell you -- something is amiss. As long as there are no health issues with him causing him to not want to use the litter box, then it's more likely stress. Is that stress coming from your constantly telling him "no" or yelling at him to get away from something or stop doing something?

My bengal cannot tolerate loud noises or talking. When we have company, he is under the bed. I have to constantly tell my husband to turn the TV down, especially if it's on a channel where you have these opposing sides talking over each other. Raiden wants a quiet environment -- maybe Lio does too.

Hang in there and try to work these issues through for Lio.


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