While it is easy to understand why cats crave of catnip or mice, but cats love to chew the non-food items such as plastic bags, wool, paper, shoes, furniture, etc. Why is she doing so? Well, unlike dogs, chewing is the usual behavior of cats. And a cat can chew on everything from plastic bags to wires to fabrics and woods.
Hence, when your feline friend chews your favorite shoe or furniture, don’t panic. It is quite reasonable that cats chew on things that aren’t meant to be chewed. But you need to ensure that this does not get out of hand because you not only lose your belongings, but it can be potentially harmful to the cats too.
Cats have the behavior of exploring everything with the mouth, and that’s how they acquire the habit of chewing. Hence, many cat owners think chewing is a normal condition. But if they possess excessive chewing behavior, then there is an abnormal medical condition involved. In this article, we will be exploring the reasons why cats chew on everything in detail and understand how it can be prevented. Without wasting much time, let’s get started.
What does cat tend to chew commonly?
- Electrical Cords
- Rubber material
- Plastic materials
- Cardboard boxes
- Bubble wrap
- Mylar bag
These are some of the material the cats tend to chew commonly. However, only the excess of them is the problem.
Why do cats chew?
Every creature in the world has its method to chew, but abnormal chewing is big trouble. However, this can be seen in humans as well as cats. While there are lots of reasons behind it, sometimes either it is due to something wrong with the functioning of the body, or some psychological condition; sometimes, the reasons can be both.
The expert vets say the chewing is normal in cats. Still, it is relative to different aspects like health, activeness, and also age. They become excessive even when their routines are disturbed or causing self-injurious. But if you think you are unable to change their behavior or control them, then it is recommended to take the proper consultation.
When does cat chew?
Cats are exhibiting behavior that may look strange to you. But typically, they have a reason behind doing it. While you may not understand the reason behind her actions, but according to experts, cats show different behavior to communicate with people. Here are the following reasons why cats may chew on everything.
- Anxiety– An overly anxious cat wants to feel satisfied with chewing things. It may be an act out for relieving the stress. The anxious felines feel relaxed by just chewing anything. In such cases, it is good to spend some time with your kitty so that she won’t feel alone.
- Parasites– Cats are generally affected by parasites. They lick or chew their skin to get rid of these parasites. They may have acquired parasites from anything like food, insects, etc. Hence, it is wise to use tick and flea removal products for your feline friend. And inspect their skin while grooming. If you ignore this, there are huge chances that your feline friend loses its hairs permanently and gets wounds on her skin.
- Allergies– Cats may have allergies too. It can be because of the food, water, or exposure in the environment. Hence, they get dry or flaky skin sometimes. Therefore, by chewing their own body, they can feel relaxed. It can be eliminated only with the help of vets.
- Boredom– Every cat owner must be familiar with how your cats get bored quickly. They are hyperactive and can easily get bored. Hence, they scratch and chew the furniture, cot, and sofas at home. Such conditions can be solved by providing your kitty with some toys to play or spend some time with her.
- Nutritional Deficiency– Most of the time, this goes unnoticed. When they have a deficiency with any nutrients in the body, they tend to chew things that are around. By unknowingly, they assume it is one or the other way to compensate for the nutrients that are lacking in the body. In such cases, please consult the vet as soon as possible before the condition gets worse.
When chewing is a real problem?
The first crucial medical condition that can cause excessive chewing is gum diseases and gastrointestinal problems. When cats try to relieve themselves out of the pain, they start chewing a lot. It helps them to relieve discomfort or pain. You can identify it by checking the gums. If you find the gums are red, then undoubtedly, there is the existence of a dental problem. And if you notice excessive salivating or licking, it means she is suffering from stomach problems.
How are medical conditions solved?
Gum or Periodontal diseases are common in pets. The cats will get inflammation of the gums and also in the tissues around the region. It is common in cats as they eat insects and other things that look like prey to them. Therefore, the best way to prevent periodontal problems is proper oral care. If the condition is worse, take your kitty to the vet to get clean her teeth. It will help in removing the plaque and other harbor bacteria that have brought by the cats. However, if you take to the vets late during this phase, then your kitty may have to lose her teeth permanently.
The Gastronomical problems are cured by vets considering the intensity of the illness. Initially, the cat’s stomach is complete washes to remove all the unwanted substances stagnant over there. Their digestive system needs to be well-treated and cleaned, so there is no disruptive chewing behavior further.
Psychological behavior problems are often associated with chewing. Medically, they are known as “Destructive chewing.” The cat needs physical exercises every day or some mental stimulation regularly to keep them away from being bored. When they do not get either of them, the boredom elevates to frustration, anxiousness, and stress. Therefore, to make them occupied and release their physical and mental energy, they start to chew anything they see. It is something you may not want to see from your cats.
What happens when cats have destructive chewing?
Similar to how a cat’s chewing is associated with natural behavior, it is also a predatory instinct. Cats are highly attracted to the items that are soft and fuzzy. Hence, anything that mimics the same is their eatable thinking. It’s more of a prey.
As you may very well know, the cat’s teeth are much sharper than dogs (Or even ours). The experts compare the teeth to that of a butter knife. Hence, when they tend to chew anything that is not meant to chew, it can be swallowed. They can get easily harmed by this behavior. Rather than knowing the frequency of eating during this time, it would help if you were careful of everything that is around. For example, if they tend to chew the strings, batteries, and more, it can lead to several other problems or sometimes death.
Dangerous chewing and their prevention
Wires and cords
Cats usually find the cables to chew instinctively. If they are left alone, they have more play alone time. As a result, they tend to explore these wires. The live wire can cause an adversely hazardous scene in the home. The following table will provide additional information on how to prevent the cats from chewing these wires.
What should you do?
|Covering the cords||The computer supply stores offer pre-split hollow tubes to mask the codes and electrical wires. It is mainly used for managing the computer cords. You can purposefully construct this with the help of a utility knife.|
All you need to do is purchase the poly tubes that are flexible for several diameters. It is also available in all hardware stores.
Slit one side of the tube and cut them to the size of the cord.
Now all cords are covered within the tube. Hence, there is no to worry about the cats touching them.
|Deny access to the chords||It is one of the simplest methods to avoid cats near wiring. Especially works well around the computers.|
Apply several double-sided sticky tapes on the floor surrounding the wiring area.
The cats will feel challenged to cross the tape. So, your problem is officially solved.
|Apple Bitter spray the chords||You will be surprised to see the result.|
Apply apple spray to the chord, especially the one that has a bitter flavor to them.
The cats never wanted to even come near them in the first place. If you have the notorious cats, then you may want to apply the spray regularly.
The above table elaborates on the simple way that you can use to protect your chords from being bitten by the cats. Similarly, not just cats, any other troublesome pets will not be accessed to the wires in case if you follow these methods correctly.
The cats are highly fond of plastic materials. The smell and the subtle taste in them make them want to chew them undeniably. The young kittens are pro-active when it comes to chewing plastic items. They try to do this quite often, especially when they are in the phase of teething. The straws may look like an interactive toy to them, and thus, the affinity is more towards that.
To avoid a similar situation, you can offer them Delomo Interactive Toys to play. As they grow from the kitten phase, they will understand the distractions made for the straws with interactive toys. That’s how you can stop them from trying to eat the straws.
Fabric or leather items
Wool or Leather chewing is common among all the cats. It is, in fact, one of the realms of OCD behavior. The best way to discourage this behavior of eating the fabric is by offering them legal chewing toys. There are chewable toys available in the market like SmartyKat catnip. Get them one of those and help them to avoid them from chewing the fabric. You can also use some apple bitter spray in the initial stages. But they may form some stubborn stains in your clothing.
Even though cats are carnivores, they have a particular affinity to greeneries. When they are stressed or tense about anything, they tend to eat even the grass. But as you know, not all the greens are good for their health, some of them can have toxic effects on their health. It is always better you know them to save your cat. For any other activities mentioned above, you will have time to react. But when they eat poisonous plants, there is no way that you will know it. It can potentially cause a lot of problems for your pet cat.
To begin with, most indoor dangerous plants for cats include Azela, Caladium, Ivy, Poinsettia, and Creeping Charlie, etc.
When it comes to indoor cats, they must have ample space and time to let go. Only when they release energy physically and also mentally, they can quickly become fit. Otherwise, they acquire all these disruptive chewing behaviors. It is not only harmful because you are not able to tolerate but also cause potential damage to your cat’s health. If you cannot figure this out by yourself, kindly check with the expert or a vet to confirm.