Why Does My Cat Chew Plastic?

Questions that can come up when working with families that have cats in their households, are often about a cats predilection for chewing on odd items. While plastic bags may seem like a strange choice for cats; from a cats point of view, they are very attractive. However, chewing on these bags can be dangerous for your cat as they can suffocate or choke on bags and bag pieces.

You may also want to discuss with your veterinarian your cats diet , as chewing on odd objects can be a symptom of insufficiency in daily dietary needs.

How do I get my cat to stop chewing on plastic?

Enrich Your Cat’s Environment. Remember: Enrichment is more than toys. ….Remove or Restrict Your Cat’s Access to Plastic. Pick up grocery bags, close doors to rooms with plastic-coated cords, and put away any stray items that might tempt your cat. ….Offer Chew Toy Alternatives.

Why do cats like chewing plastic?

Plastic bags that come from a grocery or other food store can carry the lingering scent and even taste of food, which makes chewing them a pleasant experience. … Cats can also enjoy the crinkly noises that a plastic bag makes. Another reason that cats will chew bags can be related to their dental health.

What causes pica in cats?

The cause of pica is unknown, but experts speculate that it could be due to a number of causes such as being weaned too young, dietary deficiencies, genetics, boredom, compulsive disorder, or stress. The onset of pica can be as early as 3 months of age and some cats are able to grow out of it by 1-2 years of age.

What happens when cats eat plastic?

If your cat chews on plastic, you should be concerned. Ingesting plastic may not only result in minor problems such as vomiting and diarrhea, but it can also cause a serious intestinal obstruction that may require surgery. … Hard plastic items can cause damage to sensitive mouth tissues when they are chewed.

Cats are enigmas. Why they do anything is a mystery cat-parents love to ponder, mostly because the majority of your cats quirks are ridiculously cute. But eating plastic?

Thats why, as a good cat mom or dad, its up to you to get to the root of the cause and help your fur baby choose healthier options. The best cat diet is one that is high in protein, moderate in fat, and super low in carbohydrates.

If you see the words grain, byproduct, or any other harmful pet food ingredients , toss it. Opt for cat food that lists healthy protein and fat sources – like chicken, fish, turkey, liver, and eggs – in the first 5 ingredients. This can lead your cat to seek out anything soothing, which may include hiding in dark, quiet places, scratching your favorite curtains, or eating things she shouldnt.

Rule out any possible stressors in your cats environment and do what you can to make your kitty feel at ease. Many cats will experience stress due to a health problem, even if they dont show any other signs of being ill. Cats suffering from anemia, dental problems, diabetes, brain tumors, hyperthyroidism, and immune system deficiencies can exhibit pica behaviors.

To see if this is whats driving your cats mad munchies, give her something else (read: safer) to chew on that crinkles. We like this crinkle stick that your cat can cuddle, carry, chase, or chew to satisfy that crazy craving.

Cats who eat plastic are exhibiting a dangerous behavioral urge called pica. Whether theyre chewing on plastic bags, eating sandals, or biting into the covering of electrical wires, consuming plastic can be life-threatening for cats. Heres what you need to know about pica, including how to break your kitty of this bad habit for good.

If you have a kitty who is purebred or is a Burmese or Siamese cross, preventative measures should be taken to ensure that he doesn’t develop pica. If left untreated, pica can become a compulsive behavior that often will require lifetime treatment including medications.

If your kitty is a Siamese, Burmese, or a cross of these breeds, take preventative measures early; otherwise, your cat might start this behavior before his first birthday. But cats are highly intelligent and curious creatures, and boredom can lead to trouble as your four-legged friend tries to find things in the environment to keep himself occupied. Discuss your kitty’s diet and bowel movements with your veterinarian, and be sure to bring up any other signs that would be considered out of the norm; some examples are vomiting or coughing.

Pick up grocery bags, close doors to rooms with plastic-coated cords, and put away any stray items that might tempt your cat.

Things like being really eager to knock random objects off tables or counter tops, sitting on paper that just so happens to be placed in the middle of the floor; cats are even weird with each other, often licking and grooming their cohabitant felines, but if you pay attention closely, youll find in more cases than not, the very same cat who does the grooming is also the one more likely to pick a fight.

Ive also added some tips in case chewing plastic is a habit youre hoping to help your cat break out of for one reason or another. Spot Ethical Pet Colourful Plastic Cat Spring Toys Amazon / eBay

Pica is when an animal or person has a desire to eat things that are not food and are nutritionally useless for that species to consume. But in my opinion (and I am not a vet or a pet care professional by any means so keep that in mind), if your cats just chewing and isnt swallowing any plastic, he or she likely doesnt have pica. I cant count the number of lost pens and mechanical pencils Ive found within the walls of my high school that had bite marks on them.

Dr. Eric Barchas, writing for Catster , wrote up the most reasonable response to why cats chew plastic Ive managed to find: And hey if youve ever chewed on the butt of a pencil or pen and kinda wanted to continue to chomp, even though you knew it was probably not the best idea for the long term health of your teeth my guess is you already sort of get on a personal level why plastic is enjoyable for cats to chew on. Even if swallowed, small pieces of plastic (or rubber bands) usually will pass harmlessly through a cats system.

However, a slight risk exists that such foreign material might coalesce into a form that can obstruct the intestines and require surgery. In terms of chewing and swallowing the plastic, even if its by accident that can be dangerous, because it can lead to an obstruction or cause your cat to choke and/or suffocate. So to be safest, even if its a plastic toy, if you find the object can easily break or tear into bits that can then be accidentally swallowed, keep them out of reach of your kitty.

I once bought an OurPets Annette Catnip Fish and donated it to my mum and brothers cats because my Avery wouldnt play with it, and that thing had its head torn off in a matter of minutes (in case youre curious, you can see a picture of the monstrous after in the middle of my post about cute catnip toys here ).

Why Does My Cat Eat Plastic?

After all, plastic isn’t exactly a nutritious feline snack, right?Actually, plastic pica – a recurring behavior of eating or chewing on plastic – is quite common in cats.If your cat is nibbling on grocery bags, packing pillows, and shrink wrap, there may be an underlying reason – other than that your cat is just weird.Here’s what could be causing your cat’s odd plastic habit.

Why Cats Eat Plastic

Not so cute.In fact, it’s downright hazardous.That’s why, as a good cat mom or dad, it’s up to you to get to the root of the cause and help your fur baby choose healthier options.Cats are highly instinctual animals, which means if they’re not getting something important in their diet, they’ll track down ways to get it – even it it means munching on a Mervin’s bag.The best cat diet is one that is high in protein, moderate in fat, and super low in carbohydrates. Cats that are fed manufactured cat food that’s lacking the proper balance may seek out other sources of nutrition.As cool as they come off, cats really don’t handle stress well. Unfortunately, there’s a lot that can stress your cat out, too.Like too much attention from the kids, not enough attention from you, being bullied by another cat in the house, not having enough stimulation or play time, or hidden illnesses. This can lead your cat to seek out anything soothing, which may include hiding in dark, quiet places, scratching your favorite curtains, or eating things she shouldn’t.If you just started noticing your cat eating plastic, it may not be cause for concern yet. Cats are naturally curious and, like kids, they’ll lick, bite, and chew on just about anything.Also, give your cat toys and other places to explore in the house. Some cats have a strong predatory drive and just need that itch scratched with fun toys and laser beams that make them feel like they’re on the prowl.Cats are self-soothers. They prefer to try to make themselves feel better before letting anyone else know that they’re unwell.Nibbling on plastic may be your cat’s way of trying to make herself feel better when an underlying cat health problem has her feeling under the weather. Cats suffering from anemia, dental problems, diabetes, brain tumors, hyperthyroidism, and immune system deficiencies can exhibit pica behaviors.If you’re using PrettyLitter, make sure you’re checking the color of the litter every day. While PrettyLitter can’t detect every cat health problem under the sun, it can point out when something’s not quite right and is an excellent tool for keeping tabs on your kitty’s internal health.

Why Does My Cat Eat Plastic?

Cats who eat plastic are exhibiting a dangerous behavioral urge called pica. Whether they’re chewing on plastic bags, eating sandals, or biting into the covering of electrical wires, consuming plastic can be life-threatening for cats. Here’s what you need to know about pica, including how to break your kitty of this bad habit for good.Why would a well-fed cat eating three squares a day decide to also eat plastic? It’s unlikely that it tastes good. Maybe cats who eat plastic are concerned about climate change. After all, eating plastic is better than sending it to the landfill, right?While it’s unlikely that your cat is making a feeble attempt at recycling, some cats eat plastic—whether it be the covering on wires, plastic bags, or flip flops—no matter how much their owners tempt them with more appropriate treats, and this behavior can leave owners feeling baffled.It might seem like a silly quirk or an annoying habit, but cats who eat plastic are exhibiting a dangerous behavioral urge called pica, and the consequences associated with it can be life-threatening. Ingested plastic can become lodged in the intestine requiring emergency surgery. Kitties can suffer burns or can be electrocuted from chewing wires. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to break your beloved feline of this bad habit for good.

Enrich Your Cat’s Environment

Remember: Enrichment is more than toys. It includes vertical space (resting spaces), hiding space, training, stimulation of the senses, things to chew on, and toys to hunt. Another way to keep your cat busy is to teach him some new tricks. By teaching your cat to come to you when you call him, you can call him away from negative behaviors. You can find out more about training in these books:

Offer Chew Toy Alternatives

You’ll also want to get creative and offer safe items that will feel the same as plastic in his mouth. This may mean looking at chews that are intended for dogs or thinking outside of the box. Try dehydrated or freeze-dried meats or safe dog chews. If that’s not possible, give him something you know is safe for him to chew on. Cat grass or catnip are great options as long as catnip doesn’t make your cat upset. You can also use food toys to satiate his need to use his mouth. The world of toys that spill food is infinite. Just remember to introduce these to your cat slowly, and make the toy easy at first and use his favorite treats.

Why Do Cats Chew On Plastic?

Remember how I said most sources online seemed to make the connection between chewing plastic and pica from the get go? Let’s start there.

Even Humans Like Chewing on Plastic

Let me say that again in case you skip over headers like I sometimes do: even humans enjoy chewing on some plastic sometimes. Not all humans do it, and it’s usually within the context of being a specific shape or maybe even texture, but humans are sometimes tempted to and enjoy biting on plastic.I can’t count the number of lost pens and mechanical pencils I’ve found within the walls of my high school that had bite marks on them. I’m sure you’ve seen many yourself. I’m also pretty stinkin’ sure if you gave an appropriately sized piece of plastic to a baby, he or she would try giving that plastic a bite, too. Yes, we have baby-friendly made of much better (and safer!) materials for babies to chew and teeth on, but that doesn’t make the plastic any less nice to bite. Humans realize that chewing on plastic is bad for teeth in the long run, it’s not particularly hygienic if the plastic in your mouth has a chance of being covered in bacteria, and thus you really shouldn’t do it for those reasons. But without that knowledge, maybe we’d all be chewing on our plastic pens a lot more than we currently do.