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Old 02-26-2011, 07:23 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default My Cat Chews Like a Dog. What CAN he Chew?

As the title says, he chews on everything like a puppy. Wires, tags, the tails off ALL the mice toys leaving a boring mouse carcass for the other kitties to play with (I have 4 boys, all adults now), or anything else he can put in his mouth. If there's vomit on the floor and there's something in it (like my strap to my favorite bikini), we know it was him cause none of the other kitties chew to that point. My oldest chews plastic things (like the shower curtain liner) cause he loves the sound or the crunch or something but I guess the youngest (the one with the chew problem who's almost 2 years old) saw him doing it at some point and chews everything to the point of eating it. He's well fed mind you with both dry and wet food but tends to take playing with objects too far and chews them up and swallows them.

Dogs do this all the time and special chew treats and toys were made for them. Are there any chew treats/toys for cats out there? I know my old puppy loved her Nylabone but my cat wouldn't chew on that. One its too big and two, it wouldn't be interesting to him (cats love stringy things or things that make sound etc). What can Musta (pronounced Moost-ah) chew on?


Help Musta!

Last edited by Kotick; 02-26-2011 at 07:25 PM.
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Old 02-26-2011, 10:54 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Drinking straws. My kittens went thorugh a teething phase and adored drinking straws (if you can go into mcdonalds or starbucks and 'steal' some of the bigger chunky ones, all the better )

My kittens did not ever eat the straws though, I just took the straw off them when they started to get a bit battered and replaced them.
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Old 02-26-2011, 11:14 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Can't do that cause he'll swallow it. He EATS plastic. All he'll do is throw up if I give him straws. He's too old to be teething. We took him to the vet once because he had an obstruction from the stuff he swallows. Luckily he was able to pass it (an unidentifiable object).

Edit: I bought a cheap dog treat tonight that was chicken flavor and about the size of a straw. He seemed to like it at first but now has no interest in it at all. Not a huge waste of money as the sticks were on sale. Too bad dogs don't have tuna flavor.

Last edited by Kotick; 02-26-2011 at 11:18 PM.
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Old 02-26-2011, 11:49 PM   #4 (permalink)
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My very first question would be a medical one. How are his teeth and gums? Has a vet examined them? Look inside his mouth, are the gums irritated in any way and are all the teeth healthy? Is his bite normal?

If all is well then, as annoying as it might be, the thing that you really are going to have to do is 'cat-proof' your home. Keep all wires hidden. Get a laundry basket that has a covered lid and make sure all laundry is in it and not left out. You might need to limit him to one room while you are gone and can't keep an eye on him. It sounds like he has too much time on his hands to be ingesting things that he shouldn't. How much do you play with him? Increasing play time and mental stimulation is always a positive and helpful thing. He is still very young and needs this from you. Create an environment that suits your cat and sets him up for success not the other way around since that way is not working.

You are not going to be able to convince him not to go all hunter mode on things that are wiggly and string like. The best thing for both of you is to just remove his ability to access these things. Cut the tails off the mice. Buy toys that will stimulate his desire to hunt. This is a very dangerous pattern your cat has, his access to these things needs to be removed for his safety ultimately. I personally would not recommend buying him dog items for chewing. This could make him sick. Dogs and cats have very different dietary needs and it is not safe to feed either the others items.

Good luck, he is super cute
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Old 02-27-2011, 04:09 AM   #5 (permalink)
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I read the ingredients on the dog treats before buying them and the only difference was that it contained more protein. I saw that as a plus since most cat foods don't have enough in them anyway. Yes our house has been Musta proofed but just like any kid they manage to get their hands on something whether you're home or not. He's even tried chewing the carpet.

Yes he's been to the vet and his teeth are fine. There's no health issues with him. That obstruction he had was during our trial and error in learning that our kitty chews more than the average kitty should.

There's no doubt that boredom may be an issue. Do you have an suggestions on games a kitty might want to play while I'm not home? There's no reason to lock him away from the other cats. That would honestly do more harm than good for him mentally. He seems part Maine Coon by his size and how vocal he is so he may need more play time than the average cat but his play needs to be limited because he will play to the point where he exhausts himself and we'll have to take the toy away for a while (not to mention he will chew it up, the teaser toys for example). He loves playing with lasers but we don't have the money for the one that you set down and it moves the laser light on its own so he has to wait for me to be home (I'm currently a caregiver for a close family member who had a stroke). Every time I try to play with the kitties he wont let anyone else play and hogs the whole thing even if there are multiple toys going off at once, if someone else is playing with it, he's playing with it too. Its nuts really. There's almost no pleasing him.
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Old 02-27-2011, 07:56 AM   #6 (permalink)
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I've had a few bad chewers, here are some other suggestions:

Cardboard boxes are really good for kittens' teething as well as a plastic laundry basket (but be careful no little bits are chewed off and swallowed).
Have you tried raw chicken wings?
Get plastic tube wirecovers to protect wires.
Spray everything with "Bitter Apple" (available at pet stores) to discourage chewing.

Good luck and let us know how it goes.
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Old 02-27-2011, 10:14 AM   #7 (permalink)
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You are going to think I am nuts, but raw meaty bones are great for chewing. This one is a bit big, but it is a dog bone that he just happened to steal.

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Old 02-27-2011, 03:27 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I'm a little afraid of giving him any chicken bone as he loves chicken and would most certainly eat the bone.

A beef bone is another matter though. Beef ribs are on sale and I don't think he would do too much damage on a raw bone. Its an interesting thought, I'll run it by the other half.

Sadly Bitter Apple never did anything in my house. Neither did straight vinegar. I never went the pepper route though as I don't want them sneezing all the time and I bet it would do some damage.

He loves playing in laundry baskets but doesn't chew on them. He doesn't chew cardboard either but they all love shredding it to little pieces. They don't eat the pieces either.

I still think boredom may be an issue because he's definitely over active, more so than the other cats and needs special play time (like I said, he hogs all the toys and no one else gets to play so he has to play in another room most of the time). Any suggestions for good toys out there? We have teasers, lasers, ball in fishbowl, ball in a ring with ball on top that you have to reach in and grab with a springy cat nip toy on top, cat nip (although he's a mean drunk so we don't give it to them often), jingly balls of all sorts, rattle mice with real rabbit fur and without, kitty tree, kitty tube, scratching posts, and other cat nip filled toys (his favorites are the ones with real hard core action like the laser and teaser toys). I will try the beef bone (although I'll probably have to get two cause my other kitty Gratch loves his meats and no doubt he'd steal it).
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Old 02-27-2011, 03:34 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Hot sauce.
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Old 02-27-2011, 03:38 PM   #10 (permalink)
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The other half doesn't like my idea of raw beef bones and we'll look into raw stew bones instead. I think it may be a primal urge to chew through tendons so I'll find him a nice meaty tendony icky raw bone. At least we don't have to worry too much about salmonella all over the house since it's beef.

And no we will not be using hot sauce.

Edit: The point of this thread was to get ideas of other things for him to chew not prevent the chewing, we have a handle on that already but its obvious that he still wants to chew (still chews on toys, even stuffed ones and trying to take out the stuffing but we take it away and we see him try to put things in his mouth, even toilet paper).

Last edited by Kotick; 02-27-2011 at 03:41 PM.
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