How to Stop Cats From Chewing Cords

icon June 27, 2024

Cats are curious creatures, and their playful nature often leads them to explore their environment in ways that can be dangerous, such as chewing on cords. This behavior not only poses a risk to the cat’s health but can also cause damage to electrical appliances and create potential fire hazards. This article explores effective strategies to stop cats from chewing cords, the reasons behind this behavior, the age at which cats might stop chewing on wires, and why cats are particularly attracted to cords.

How to Stop Cats From Chewing Cords

Why Do Cats Chew on Cords?

Understanding why cats chew on cords is the first step in preventing this behavior. Several factors can contribute to this tendency:

1. Teething

Kittens, much like human babies, go through a teething phase. This typically occurs between 2 to 6 months of age when they are losing their baby teeth and their adult teeth are coming in. During this time, they might chew on various objects, including cords, to alleviate the discomfort.

2. Boredom

Cats are intelligent animals that require mental and physical stimulation. If a cat is bored or lacks adequate playtime, they might resort to chewing on cords as a form of entertainment.

3. Attention-Seeking

Cats quickly learn that certain behaviors attract their owner’s attention. If chewing on cords results in immediate interaction, even if it’s negative, a cat might repeat the behavior to get noticed.

4. Stress or Anxiety

Stress and anxiety can also lead to destructive behaviors in cats. Changes in the household, the presence of other pets, or environmental factors can cause a cat to chew on cords as a coping mechanism.

5. Dental Issues

Oral health problems, such as gum disease or tooth pain, might cause a cat to chew on objects, including cords, to relieve discomfort.

How to Stop Cats from Chewing Cords

Addressing this behavior involves a combination of deterrents, environmental modifications, and positive reinforcement. Here are some effective strategies:

1. Use Bitter Sprays

Applying a bitter-tasting spray to cords can deter cats from chewing on them. These sprays are non-toxic and safe for pets. The unpleasant taste discourages the cat from chewing while being harmless.

2. Provide Alternatives

Ensure your cat has plenty of appropriate items to chew on, such as rubber toys, dental chews, and catnip-infused toys. Providing these alternatives can satisfy their urge to chew and divert their attention from cords.

3. Hide or Cover Cords

Whenever possible, hide cords behind furniture or use cord covers. You can also use spiral cable wrap or split tubing to encase the cords, making them less accessible and less appealing to your cat.

4. Environmental Enrichment

Increase your cat’s environmental enrichment by providing a variety of toys, interactive play sessions, and puzzle feeders. Ensuring your cat has plenty of mental and physical stimulation can reduce boredom and the likelihood of chewing on cords.
→Related: Cat Enrichment Toys

5. Training and Positive Reinforcement

Training your cat using positive reinforcement can be effective. When your cat engages in appropriate behavior, reward them with treats, praise, or playtime. Consistency in rewarding good behavior helps reinforce it.

6. Address Underlying Health Issues

If your cat’s chewing behavior is due to dental problems or other health issues, consult your veterinarian. Treating underlying health issues can reduce the compulsion to chew on inappropriate objects.

What Age Do Cats Stop Chewing Cords?

Kittens are more likely to chew on cords due to teething and their playful nature. Most kittens will outgrow this behavior as they mature, typically around 1 year of age. However, some cats may continue to chew on cords into adulthood, especially if the behavior has become a habit or is driven by factors like boredom or stress.

Why Are Cats Attracted to Cords?

Cats may be attracted to cords for several reasons:

1. Movement

Cords can resemble string or prey when they move, making them appealing targets for a cat’s natural hunting instincts. Cats are drawn to the movement and may bat at or chew on cords as part of their play behavior.

2. Texture

The texture of cords can be satisfying for cats to chew on, especially if they are teething or have a desire to gnaw.

3. Accessibility

Cords are often easily accessible and present in various areas of the home. Their presence at a cat’s level makes them convenient objects to explore and chew.

4. Novelty

New cords, such as those for recently purchased electronics, can pique a cat’s curiosity. The unfamiliar scent and texture can attract cats to investigate and chew on them.

Additional Tips and Considerations

1. Consistency

Consistency is key when implementing strategies to stop your cat from chewing cords. Reinforce positive behaviors and consistently apply deterrents to discourage chewing.

2. Safe Environment

Creating a safe environment for your cat is crucial. Ensure that all electrical cords are secured and that your cat has access to plenty of safe, engaging toys.

3. Supervision

Supervise your cat, especially young kittens, during their playtime to ensure they are not engaging in harmful behaviors like chewing on cords.

4. Consult a Veterinarian

If your cat’s chewing behavior persists despite your efforts, consult a veterinarian. There might be underlying health or behavioral issues that need to be addressed.


Chewing on cords is a common but potentially dangerous behavior in cats. By understanding the reasons behind this behavior and implementing a combination of deterrents, environmental enrichment, and positive reinforcement, you can effectively prevent your cat from chewing on cords. Remember that patience and consistency are crucial in modifying your cat’s behavior. Ensuring your cat’s environment is safe, engaging, and meets their physical and mental needs will help keep them happy and healthy, reducing the likelihood of destructive behaviors.

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