What are the best ages to enroll your new adopted kitten in a kitten kindergarten class?
Kitten kindergarten classes focus on socializing your cat. The socialization period is very small, from about two and nine weeks of age. In fact, the Animal Medical Center in New York City, in their kitten kindergarten desciption, recommends that older kittens should stay at home since older kittens and cats do not enjoy the socialization and can become fearful or aggressive.
If your kitten is handled by people, enjoys lots of pleasant and positive interaction with other pets when she’s young, she’s more likely to remain friendly and less stressed. Alternatively, if a kitten has no social contact during that young age, she will probably fear humans for the rest of her life; as an example, feral cats can, over months or years, become more tolerant of a familiar person, but most will never be very sociable.
This does not, however, mean that the kitten should be taken away from the mother before she’s ready, because the mother can also pass on valuable social skills to her kittens; in fact, some evidence suggests that kittens weaned before four weeks of age may have trouble relating to other cats when they grow up. If a mother cat is in a good home and her kittens get plenty of human handling and interaction, many cat experts recommend keeping kittens with their mother and litter for up to twelve weeks of age.
However, if you’re considering adopting a kitten from a litter who hasn’t been handled by people at all, plan to bring your new kitten home by seven weeks of age and make sure she’s in kitten kindergarten. The class gives her the chance to receive proper socialization toward people iand develop into a happy, sociable companion.