Why Does My Cat Eat Paper? Here’s What You Need To Know
Have you ever witnessed your cat nibble on paper? If your cat has bizarre cravings just like mine, then know that this is not exactly unusual. There are pets who have weird ideas when it comes to what counts as edible food. Both dogs and cats are among the animals that have demonstrated weird eating habits.
After researching and collecting information on animal behavior, I have finally found the possible answers to the question – “why does my cat eat paper?”. Read on and know how weaning and other environmental factors can prompt the development of cat pica or the condition of eating non-food items.
Possible Causes of Bizarre Cravings in Felines
Reason #01: Your cat may have been weaned too early
According to Nicolas H. Dodman of Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine, when cats are weaned too early, they become more driven to suck on things around them. From sucking on wool and fleece, then start chewing on them. Eventually, they move on to eating items like paper.
Reason #02: Your cat may be bored or under a lot of stress.
Cat pica may also be caused by a stressful or boring environment. When cats are exposed to such environment, they tend to soothe themselves by demonstrating this such behavior. When your cat does not receive sufficient mental stimulation, she may begin nibbling on items to get herself busy.
Reason #03: The behavior may run in the genes
Genetic predisposition is also one possible cause of pica behavior. This is according to expert animal behaviorist named Alice Moon-Fanelli of Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine. Based on one of her studies, wool-sucking is more evident among Birman and Siamese cat breeds.
Reason #04: Your cat may have medical problems you do not know.
Cat pica is often linked to medical problems such as feline immunodeficiency virus. In some cases, cats with feline leukemia also demonstrate such behavior. Nibbling on paper, wool, and plastic may also be triggered by various conditions such as brain tumors or feline diabetes.
Reason #05: Your cat may be suffering from dietary deficiencies
Researchers also suggest that cats tend to eat non-food items when they experience deficiencies in fiber or fat. In fact, the non-fat food they eat can be indicators of what is missing from their diet. For instance, some cats would eat their own cat litter when they experience anemia.
What Can Be Done to Resolve Cat Pica
As a cat owner, it is normal to get worried when your car demonstrates such behavior. Now you know the answer to the question –“ why does my cat eat paper”, allow me to share some tips on how you can address this problem.
- First, you may want to get rid of the targeted items. Hiding clothes, paper, or any item your cat tends to nibble is your first and simplest solution. Moreover, you can also give your chat an item she can chew on such as those cat chew treats that are available on the market.
- Second, you can play with your cat more. As cats that eat paper tend to do this out of boredom, you can make time for them to physically stimulate your feline pals. Taking your car to a short walk or spending some time outdoors can stimulate your cat physically as well.
- Third, you may likewise increase mental stimulation by offering your cats with puzzle feeders and activity toys. There are also entertainment DVDs that are specially made for you cars and you may want to consider purchasing one for your pet.
- Fourth, you may need to make some dietary adjustments. This can be done with the help of your veterinarian. Your local veterinarian may likely advise the increase in fiber intake. See to it that you would only follow a veterinarian’s advice as too much fiber may cause intestinal distress to your cat.
- Lastly, always seek the advice of your veterinarian to know if your cat is suffering from any medical condition. You may also consult with an animal behaviorist to understand your cat’s condition better. Seeking professional help often provides a more definitive solution in cases such as cat pica.
After finding the possible answer to my question – why does my cat eat paper?, I have also learned the importance of acknowledging that each cat has her own set of behavior. Therefore, a one-size-fits-all type of approach is not always the solution.
As a pet owner, it is vital to be keen on observing any odd behavior demonstrated by your cat. It is important to always give your pet cat the time to play and do activities together. This would divert their attention and drastically reduce the need to go for non-food items to soothe themselves.
In addition, it is paramount to have an animal behaviorist and a veterinarian involved in seeking the solution to this particular bizarre habit. After all, obtaining answers from a professional would give you peace of mind and make you worry less about your pet..