Last Updated on: January 11, 2021
As all cat-lovers know, cats are infamously curious and playful animals, and anything out of the ordinary will immediately catch their eye. This could be anything from rustling leaves to a laser pointer, and any loose wires will surely pique their interest.
This is annoying at best because your cat will chew up your laptop charger and render it useless, but at worst, they could suffer a potential electric shock. They could also potentially swallow small bits of wires, chargers, or headphones, which may lead to potential choking hazards or blockages.
Whenever you bring home a new cat, you’ll need to do “cat-proofing” around your home. This includes stowing away food properly, making sure they can’t scratch up your antique furniture, and making sure there aren’t any wires that they may have access to. In this article, we’ll discuss why your cat may be chewing on household wiring and what you can do to stop it.
Why is my cat chewing wires?
Other than their innate curiosity, there are several other reasons that your cat may be chewing or playing with wires.
Lack of mental stimulation is the most likely cause, and bored cats will find any way they can to entertain themselves. They may be chewing wires out of pure boredom, and dangling wires present a fun pastime. If this is the case, consider purchasing cat toys to help keep your cat mentally engaged.
Kittens and young adult cats are still exploring and making sense of the world around them, and chewing wires may just be a way of sensing if this fun cable is edible. Kittens also go through teething stages and will find comfort in chewing, but this habit should decrease as they get older.
How to cat-proof wires
No matter the reason for your feline’s chewing, you’ll likely need to do cat-proofing around the home to prevent your cat from potentially hurting themselves. You cannot keep a 24/7 watch on your cat, and making sure any wires around the home are cat-proof will give you peace of mind. Here are tried-and-tested methods to cat-proofing wires:
1. Plastic wire wraps
Plastic wire wraps are not only a simple and affordable way to keep cables and wires out of your cat’s reach, but they also help reduce clutter and organize your wires. These simple tubes are a breeze to install and are difficult for cats to get into. As an added protection, coat them with a deterrent spray or smell that they don’t like.
If you are DIY-minded, you can make these wraps yourself from unused tubing.
Cats are highly sensitive to smell, and a simple cat deterrent spray lightly applied to your wires and around the area should put them off from chewing the wires. Keep one of these sprays close to where your wires and cables are and give them a spray occasionally. Chances are good that your cat will quickly lose interest, and you can stop using the spray altogether.
You can also easily make your own deterrent spray at home, using citrus essential oils (cats hate citrus) or herbal oils like lavender or rosemary.
3. Velcro wraps
Velcro cable wraps are an inexpensive and affordable solution to cats chewing wires. Simply wrap up your cables and store them in hard-to-reach areas or where your cat cannot see them — out of sight, out of mind. For added peace of mind, give them a spray with a deterrent just to be sure.
4. Double-sided tape
Cats hate sticky things, and sticky double-sided tape is likely to swiftly put them off. Also, being such creatures of habit, the introduction of a new texture in the environment will hopefully frighten them away. Unfortunately, this solution can get messy, but hopefully, you can remove the tape after a few days.
5. Motion-activated sprays
Using the same concept as deterrent sprays, motion-activated sprays take a hands-free approach to stop your cat from chewing wires. These sprays will detect motion (your cat) near your wires and cables and emit an odorless formula that will startle them and hopefully keep them from going near your wires.
6. Pet training mats
Pet training mats can be a useful deterrent, making use of uncomfortable pins that are harmless to your cat’s paws but uncomfortable enough to keep them from walking on it. Best of all, you can remove the mat, and your cat will likely associate the area with discomfort and stay away. You can reuse the mat in various places and even use it for dogs too.
Other precautions to take
Cats are a big responsibility, and it is up to us as their owners and caretakers to do as much as possible to keep them safe. The place where you have the most control is in your own home, and by taking these relatively easy steps, you can quickly cat-proof your wires and avoid potential injury for your feline friend.
Featured image credit: Ekaterina Kuzovkova, Shutterstock
Roland has been an animal lover all his life, with cats holding a special place in his heart. He is owned by three felines: Wheely, KitzKitz, and Nugget (all rescues) who bring all the laughter and mischievousness one can expect from the feline master race. As the creator of ExcitedCats, his mission is to assist in the search for the best gear to help improve the health and wellbeing of cats everywhere.