This Just In: Cats Chew Through Wires!
She looks innocent enough, but when the Devil gets in her… and boredom strikes… it is the wiry treats she goes for! This happy little girl is my cat, Rayne. We often joke that we should change the spelling of her name to "Reign" because she thinks she runs the place. She can however on occasion run out of things to do, and that is when I need to watch her every move.
She snuggles up to me and rubs against my leg, sits up and begs and jumps on my lap, but when I'm not paying attention, she like to nibble on the many wires and power chords that reside under my desk. On Thursday morning, I learned the hard way that I must keep her occupied. She is only 2 years old after all.
I have been working from home, as many of you I know are also doing these days. Six or seven weeks in… whatever it has been, everything has (for the most part) gone according to plan and there have been no major tech glitches. Well, that ended today. When I went to hop on the microphone to begin my news shift… NOTHING! ACK!
I took the better part of the day to discover that Rayne had chewed through the power supply wire that leads to the unit that powers my microphone. This was not a happy finding. Luckily, I had a spare power supply, but the early part of the day set me back quite a bit.
The point to all this? There are some things you can do to keep your kitty from chowing down on your especially important wires. You know… the ones that charge your phone, keep Alexa powered up, and of course the most important ones that lead to your computer.
Petbucket.com posted an article a few years back called: 5 Ways to Prevent Your Cat from Chewing on Wires. If you have a bored cat that likes to chew, perhaps you could benefit from these tips from that article. I plan to use them myself!
- Conceal cords
Many new parents are obsessed with baby proofing a new home. The same could be said of bringing home pets. The most obvious solution to this problem is to hide the object of obsession. Electronics retailers and home-improvement stores sell hollow tubing that you can use to cover cords. Many of these products are made of hard plastic and will deter your cats from chewing on wires in the first place. If your cat already has this obsession, the tubing will remove it from sight, and hopefully from its mind.
It is a good idea to keep an eye on the situation if your cat already has the habit though, just to ensure that it isn't chewing through the tubing and continuing to chew wires. This could not only cause damage to the wires, but also your cat's teeth.
2. Redirect chewing energy
The average cat toy available today is designed to prevent boredom and deter scratching habits that can damage furniture and fixtures in the home. Dogs, on the other hand, are often provided with toys to relieve chewing obsessions and help with excessive chewing energy. Some of these dog toys may actually help your cat by redirecting its chewing obsession onto something other than wires.
One good example is a rubber chew bone. There are multiple examples available from retailers, but any rubber chew toy with nubs on it should do the trick. The nubs give your cat a physical sensation from chewing, without the destructive results of a chewing on wires. Additionally, the nubs can help clean its teeth. One note though: purchase a small chew toy. Your cat's mouth is not as large as the average dog. Purchase a small enough chew toy for your cat to actually chew on.
3. Prevent boredom
Another obvious solution is to prevent boredom by purchasing toys for your cat that are enjoyable to play with. Chewing on wires is often a sign of boredom. Prevent this by buying your cat a new climbing house and scratching post to give it a fun place to roam.
4. Visit your vet
It is not common, but your cat could be chewing on wires because it has a health condition with its teeth or gums. Cats will seek out anything to chew on, including wires, when they are suffering from an issue with a tooth or gum discomfort such as that created by gingivitis.
5. DO NOT use sprays
A common solution to chewing issues with dogs includes the use of bitter sprays. While this could be a solution for cat, you need to exercise caution in using sprays. The idea is to create a negative association with chewing on cords, but many bitter apply sprays contain herbal extracts that pose a health risk to your cat. It would take a lot of the spray to negatively impact your cat's health, but stubborn cats that fight through the taste could suffer as a result.