Causes of Compulsive Cat Chewing

Cat chewing is a normal behavior caused by curiosity, boredom, hunger or teething. Cats may chew on anything, starting from furniture and walls to clothes and shoes. However, if the chewing becomes uncontrollable, you need to find out the reasons why your cat is chewing and look for possible solutions.

Intestinal Obstruction

If a cat is chewing obsessively, he may have swallowed an object that may obstruct his intestine.

The chewing will also be accompanied by vomiting (sometimes even blood in the vomit), diarrhea and tiredness.


Cats have two sets of teeth, milk and permanent teeth.

The milk teeth start growing at the age of 4 weeks. It is only normal for the kitten to chew excessively, as teething is painful. Until the age of 6 weeks, the kitten will have 26 baby teeth.

However, the permanent teeth will start growing after the age of 15 to 30 weeks, after the milk teeth fall out.

Talk to your vet about the best chew toys and gels that will relieve the teething pain.

Anemia and Diabetes

Cats may chew because of anemia or diabetes. Typically, cats with anemia or diabetes need extra fibers and they will chew on different things, including plants.


Parasites will determine the cat to chew excessively. The itching is unbearable and the cat tries to relieve the itchiness by chewing his own fur.


Anxiety and stress may cause compulsive chewing in felines. Cats are sensitive creatures and any change can cause anxiety.

How to Stop Obsessive Cat Chewing

Most importantly, you need to consult the vet to rule out medical conditions. By treating the underlying condition, you will stop the chewing.

However, if your cat continues chewing you should also use the following tips:

  • Chew toys - cats like to chew and if you give them toys to chew on, they will not chew on cables or shoes.
  • Plastic straws are very entertaining for kittens and cats.
  • Grass - cats like the texture of grass and if you offer them grass or catnip, cats will also have a healthy fiber supplement.
  • Cover the wires and cords with metallic or plastic tubes. That way, the cat will not have access to the cords; many accidents happen when cats chew on wires and cords.
  • Hide clothes and shoes. As you know, cats love to chew on shoes or clothes. If you hide these in a locked closet, the cat will chew on his toys.
  • Use repellent spray. A bitter tasting repellent spray will keep the cat away from furniture, cords or clothes. Opt for sprays that cannot be sensed by humans.
  • Put double sided tape in the areas where your cat likes to chew. Cats don’t like sticky surfaces.

Chewing is predominant in kittens; however, cats with a medical or psychological problem may start chewing. Chewing can be dangerous, especially if cats chew on cords, poisonous plants or on their own fur. Compulsive chewing can cause bald spots and skin problems, as cat saliva contains a lot of bacteria.