Apprentices are Clan cats older than six moons, training to be a warrior (or sometimes a medicine cat) under a mentor. All apprentices' names end with the suffix '-paw' (ex. Lionpaw, Breezepaw), which symbolizes the path their paws are on, until they receive their warrior name. Apprentices have their own den in the Clan camp, where they sleep (except the medicine cat apprentice who sleeps in the Medicine Cat Den). Medicine Cat Apprentices get their full name at the Moonstone/Moonpool. They also stay an apprentice as long as their mentor is living, even after they've received their full names, unlike warrior apprentices. Sometimes apprentices are referred to as 'paws.
A kit is usually apprenticed to a mentor at the age of six moons. Mentors are assigned by the Clan Leader after an Apprentice Ceremony, choosing pairings based on seniority and whether or not the pair will be able to work together. After apprenticed, in the Forest they would have to make a trip to Free Mountain with their mentor, but now that the Clans have moved to the Lake, the tradition died out.
Warrior apprentices train with their mentor whenever their mentor takes them. As an apprentice, a cat learns fighting moves and hunting, and becomes familiar with the Warrior Code. An apprentice is usually not mentored from their blood relatives because they usually go soft on their kin.After their mentor is satisfied with them, and after passing an assessment, the apprentices are made into warriors after a Warrior Ceremony, and they keep a silent vigil overnight.
Medicine cat apprentices are taught about healing techniques, such as how to care for a sick cat, or what herbs do. They are usually taught in the medicine cat's den, or outside the camp when they gather herbs. They also learn about signs from SpiritClan.
Tasks of apprentices include training with their mentors, going hunting and on border patrols with other cats of their Clan, and looking after the elders.
Apprentices cannot leave the camp without the permission of their mentor or another warrior, and they cannot eat until the elders and nursing queens eat, unless they have special permission. If an apprentice breaks a rule, they usually have to go through punishments, like searching the elders' pelts for ticks, and if they find any, they must rub foul smelling mouse bile on the ticks to make them drop off. Another punishment is cleaning out old bedding and replacing it with fresh moss.