Similar to puppies, some cats enjoy chewing on objects. Many cats prefer certain objects made of plastic, but why? Does it damage a cat if it eats or chew on plastic?
Common Chewing Patterns in Cats
Teething cats usually nibble on objects more frequently than adult cats do. Kittens lose their baby teeth between the ages of 3.5 and 7 months, after which they grow a full set of adult teeth. While your kitten’s need to chew may increase during these four months as it seeks relief from the 30 newly erupted teeth, different teeth will fall out at different times.
Kittens like to play with small objects, and occasionally they will put these objects in their mouths, like rubber bands, bottle tops, or bottle nipples. They frequently continue acting in the same way after touching the products and search for items with the similar texture.
Some textures may be preferred by adult cats while chewing. But most felines who chew or eat plastic do so first because they thought the object tasted good or because they enjoyed playing with it, not because they have a food problem. Some cats are braver than others and will lick or bite items to see what happens. They might continue doing something if it tastes nice or produces a humorous sound. Plastic grocery bags may also appeal to cats because they are usually coated, and cats like the way the coating tastes.
If they have dental pain, adult cats may start chewing on plastic to try and numb their hurting mouths. If you suspect that your cat may be experiencing dental pain or disease, make sure to have your veterinarian examine its teeth.
Unusual chewing habits in cats
Consuming nonnutritive materials like trash or dirt is a sign of the eating problem known as pica. Given that plastic has no nutritional value, it is possible to say that a cat who chews and then consumes plastic has pica. It’s possible that the attraction to a specific object started out of pure curiosity or when it was covered or loaded with catnip, cookies, or another alluring food. However, a cat under stress may act erratically and eventually develop pica as a response.
Cats with aggression issues may start chewing on plastic wires and other objects around the house as a method to express their emotions. These violent tendencies may be a sign of a number of ailments, such as stress, poor socialization, and discomfort.
Problems Chewing Plastic
While certain plastic items are completely safe for your cat to chew on, many others could injure your kitty. Small plastic items that your cat can completely fit in its mouth are a choking hazard. They could also be swallowed and cause extra problems.
Sharp edges or corners of plastic objects can hinder the body’s absorption of food and liquids, as well as rip or pierce the stomach and intestines. If your cat chews plastic, you must remove it. When it comes to plastic materials, your veterinarian may occasionally advise letting your cat vomit the object. The most likely course of action for your veterinarian to remove the object from your cat is surgery or an endoscopy. Since these procedures require general anesthesia and carry some risks, it is typically advised to prevent your cat from ingesting plastic in the first place.
Avoiding Your Cat Chewing Plastic
Stress and anxiety in cats can be minimized or even prevented. When a cat is in an unfamiliar or changing environment, pheromones, medications, and dietary supplements can all help it relax naturally. If you can help prevent or lessen the amount of stress your cat experiences, they are less likely to develop the bad behavior of stress-chewing plastic. You can also lessen tension in your indoor cat by letting it gradually adjust to new circumstances, using curtains to limit the line of sight with outdoor cats, and using other methods.
You may completely prevent your cat from getting its claws on any plastic items that are within reach of your cat, such as rubber bands, plastic lids, and milk jug rings, by taking them out of reach and throwing them away. If you don’t want your cat to chew on something, put it away or hide it.
Last but not least, luring a cat to non-plastic products is a great approach to keep them away from plastic ones. You can use catnip or treats to persuade your cat to play with or ingest other items, as well as fascinating and secure toys made of a variety of textures and materials, feather wands, and laser pointers.