If you have a kitten who lives with a big dog, you may often find your kitten bouncing sideways, arching his back, jumping and prodding a big dog as if he is from a different planet.
Kittens often puff up their tails, do sideways hops to initiate playtime with dogs. They like to act as if they are scared or intimidated as a way to get the dogs interested in playing with them. If your dog decides to ignore your little feline fellow, the kitten may continue to bother the dog until they both start playing together.
(Click to play the video below - a white kitten trying to play with a big dog)
Kittens need a lot of playtime. If they are constantly bored it can be harmful to their overall development. If your dog is not into playing with a kitten, you can prepare toys or other alternatives to keep your cats entertained. Kittens tend to be in full-bore play mode when they play. They often misjudge the height or distance when they jump. It is wise to keep an eye on the little ones and keep them away from furniture that might injure them.
the Cat Behavior Answer Book by Arden Moore