Why Do Mother Cats Attack Their Older Kittens

Why Do Mother Cats Attack Their Older Kittens: Mother cats protect their kittens, but sometimes mother cats are very aggressive on the kittens. If your mother cat starts beating her kitten, you may be shocked why this is happening. Most owners become worried about why mother cats attack their small kittens. It is very necessary to know why mother cats attack their older kittens and how we can solve this problem. 

The mother of the cat attacked her older kitten for various reasons. First of all mama cat wants to send her kitten into the world. The message of those kittens is clear that the mama cat wants to teach their kittens you are not my responsibility, you are young enough now. That does not mean that mama cats do not love them, the main reason for this is that sometimes many people come into your home and they behave unfamiliar with the kittens. 

The main reasons for doing this are, disciplining them, protecting them from other cats, hormonal imbalances, lack of space and teaching them how to hurt others. Sometimes, the mama cat feels discomfort when the kittens are sick then she attacks them. If the kittens become a burden on the mother cat, she may beat them. It is very important to know that every cat is different and might have its own motives for beating her kitten. What is the reason behind and why mama cat attacked her kitten, today we have come to you to solve your problem. There are many reasons. 

Why do mother cats attack their older kittens?

There are many reasons mother cats attack their kittens, maybe she feels too threatened and wants to secure them. When she is tired from motherhood and wants to reduce their kittens she astonishes them. It is very important for us to understand it to prevent such conditions. Today, we have listed many possible reasons.

1. Kitten become mature and independent

Why Do Mother Cats Attack Their Older Kittens

Sometimes the mama cat feels that their kittens are no longer newborn and they are ready to protect themselves. She is starting to ignore them very gently, and kittens feel that they are no longer needed by her. 

If the kittens are quite small the mama cat allows them to stay with her. When she believes that  they are mature and able to secure them from other cats then she pushes them and beats them to go outside the world. When the kittens are nearly 12 -14 weeks they are able to survive without a caretaker. When the kittens are grown-up they attempt to take their mother cat away. They will force their loving mother to find a new place. 

The mama cat protects himself from her kittens, she tries to approach the kittens first. Because of this, the mama cat attacks her kitten to clear some space and secure being expelled from her area. 

2. Jealousy

Why Do Mother Cats Attack Their Older Kittens

Cats are well-aware of the love that they receive from their owners. When a mama cat gives birth to a litter and the owner is very aware about the kittens. Your all focus is led to the kitten and you spend all your day with the kitten, mother cat feels jealous. 

According to Pet Care Lovers, jealousy is present in cats if you ignore them and this thing produces aggression  in them and they fight the other cats to secure our area and status.

Mother cats still attack their older kittens if she senses that they conduct more attraction and love as compared to him. So she astonished their kitten and sent them outside. We do not behave unknown with your mother cat, it is our responsibility to understand the feelings of mama cat. 

3. Hormone and stress problems

Cat maternal hormonal problems can result from a variety of factors. Genetic variants affect a type of motherhood behavior in cats. A mother cat might not be able to secure her kittens like a nurse and she attacks them even if she lacks faulty maternal-related traits. 

A mother cat experiences labor symptoms like cramps, even if she is not pregnant, as a result hormonal changes. Cats are sensitive animals and they may be affected by any changes. Maternal problems also cause hormonal fluctuation. 

In the mother cat’s behavior stress might also lead to similar issues. Felines are sympathetic creatures and any kind of change might impact them. First time the mama cat might be more susceptible to behavioral issues as compared to women who have raised kittens. 

4. Lack of space

 A mother cat might start to feel that the older kittens are occupying her space and making her lack space. The mother cat requires a specific room to relax, if she gets crowded around her, she may begin to beat her kittens for occupying all the rooms. A mother cat is beating her older kittens and is clearly letting them, she is making her area and wants them to get out of it. 

If you observe this behavior in your mother cat, you need to intervene. No matter how many cats are living in your house, provide each cat sufficient space for living. If it is out of the real problem for the mother cat, think about purchasing extra equipment. Buying some new toys and bed for the kitten to use. 

5. Illness or Injury

Why Do Mother Cats Attack Their Older Kittens

Sickness or illness plays a very important role in causing a mother cat to attack her older kitten. When a mama cat sees their kittens in vulnerability and believes that their chances of survival are low then she may exhibit aggressive behavior towards the impacted older kitten. 

It is our duty to recognize the signs of sickness in kittens and seek veterinary care. Because, if a mama cat feels discomfort due to the kitten’s illness, she starts beating her kitten. If you find your mother cat continuously beating her sick kitten, you should try to separate them. 

6. Mama cat is hungry

We are aware that our mama cat does not endure lengthened hunger. They usually need to feed. A mother cat is starving and her older kittens enjoy the desires and leap around. The mama cat may become hungry and her energy level is decreasing due to hunger. While enjoying a yummy meal, the mother cat starts beating her older kittens. 

The mama cat considers it easier in silence without disturbance of her older kittens. While the mama cat is eating, if any kitten comes to her territory she starts beating and the older kitten goes back to her place. 

7. Playtime

Sometimes, things are not simply as we see them. If you believe that you have seen mama cat chasing away her small kitten, we are thinking wrong. Perhaps what you saw does not have anything, the mother cat is just playing with her kitten and teaches them some important life’s lesson. The mama cat who beat their younger kitten is actually doing them a favor. There are some games in which you should not involve your pets because they hurt you.

The mama cat might enroll in playtime sessions and they might kick, scratch, and even bite each other during playing. However, these bites are not meant to hurt anyone, so you should not worry about them.

What should i do if mother cats attacks her kittens

The mother cats are not always gentle and kind, therefore it’s usual for mother cats to beat her older kitten. The mama cat’s bites are not harmful for kittens. So you need not to worry about this but do some important things. 

Remove yourself from the situation: If you are present when a mama cat behaves aggressively, during this time your first duty is to secure yourself from the mother cat and keep distance.

Do not interfere directly: Avoid interfering yourself directly, while mama cat beating her kittens. Provide all the requirements which mama cats and their kittens need. 

Comfortable area for mother cat: Create a new home for the mama cat because she wants a big space for resting. A large number of human activities like aromas and noises might irritate her and as a result she beat her older kittens. 

Final Words

Mother cat might attack their kitten, actually she is teaching them to find her own territory. You should try to separate the kittens after 12-14 weeks because the mother cat needs a big space for rest. 

There are many reasons ‘Why do mother cats attack their older kittens. These include limited resources, establishing dominance, stress and anxiety, illness and hormonal changes.

Beside this, any change in your behavior makes the mother cat angry. If your feline is a first time mom make sure she is adjusting comfortably. If your mother cat is under stress you should get in touch with a doctor.


Yes, she fights to protect her kittens in any case. When she sees  her kittens in danger, she will bravely face any kind of problem. Supporting a mother cat’s  protective behavior is essential for the well-being of both.

If you find unfamiliar behavior from the mother cat. You may watch out for that mean the mama cat is mistreating her kittens. Biting signs may indicate that the mama cat is behaving aggressively with her older kittens. If you find a kitten is screaming out, it means the mama cat is hurting them.

If a mother cat is threatened by other cats and people then she beats her kitten. When the kittens are sick the mother cat feels discomfort then she attacks them.

If you see a rejected kitten, it is very important to take it to the veterinarian as soon as possible. The veterinarian checks both of them and gives you a good suggestion. 

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