Why do cats chew on cardboard?

Though we, human beings have domesticated cats for a long time, they have their originality in wild animals only. They have the inheritance of attacking the prey, chopping the food into pieces, and then eating it. The availability of food depends on their living nature.

On the contrary, domesticated cats do not attack their prey or chop their prey for easier consumption. Hence, according to their teeth design, they need to chew on something comfy.

But why, cardboard?

Cats love to chew on most of the things and cardboard seems to be their favorite. This is due to the sense of feeling they get while chewing the cardboard. Cats not only chew the cardboard, but they lay eyes on wires, chords, leather products, and shoes.

Though all these products relieve their itching of teeth, the irritating sensation when a new tooth is growing and other, cardboard ingredients do give them a relief which they all prefer the most.

Many cat owners build a house for their cat in cardboard and that is the place where cats are expected to spend most of their time. During their itching, they have only this cardboard to chew on and nothing else, in most cases. Hence, this becomes their easy prey.

I have researched this topic since many cat owners do have the same complaint. Read out more to know more about why your cats chew on cardboard.

Reason for cats chewing on cardboard?

There are reasons why cats chew on many things available in your house. The basic common reasons would be,


The kittens and cats before attaining maturity, feel itching in the teeth, and chewing on something would release their itching feel for quite some time.

They will obviously rely on anything that is easily accessible to them. The hanging wires, chords at a reachable distance, etc.,

The kittens, when they have baby teeth, like human babies, chew to push away the teeth sensation.

Hereditary behavior

Why do cats chew on Cardboard boxes. Should you worry?

As said at the start of the article, though we have domesticated the cats, still the behavior finds its roots in wildlife only. Unlike wild cats, domestic cats do not hunt and eat. So, it’s obvious for them to chew on something which is at a hand distance.

Dietary problem

If the cat only chews on something items in your house and leaves the chewed pieces on the floor, that is absolutely fine when compared to cats which not only chew on items but consumes some part or pieces of it. When cats get an urge to eat items that are non-cat food, then you must take it to the vet doctor since this might be caused due to dietary issues.

A Diet chart must be planned in such a way that the feline gets an adequate amount of all necessary nutrients and vitamins. Any insufficiency in this would cause the animal to consume some pieces while chewing it.

This is a serious problem that needs immediate care. This type of behavior can be observed when it tries to eat grass or at worst case, may consume its litter.

Genetically disorder

Why Does My Cat Chew On Cardboard? – CattyBox

Sometimes, the reason for your cat chewing on the cardboard can be traced back to its hereditary. The genetic disorder may be the reason, which is common in certain breeds.

Safe place

Cats sometimes may be spotted hiding under dark places, shrinking their size to fit in a small box and more such behaviors are seen which is inherited from wild cats.

They hide since it gives protection feel against their predators. And staying there for a while causes them to be hungry and the first and foremost they can see is the cardboard they are hiding in.

Is this a serious problem?

Cat chewing up cardboard box - YouTube

If you are cat is only chewing on the cardboard since they are playful and feel comfortable around you, it is of utmost fine. If you are willing to sacrifice a few boxes just to see your cat being happy is healthy. You bought that cat to play with you and be cheerful when you are around, so this is absolutely fine.

This chewing on cardboard boxes and papers is absolutely fine only until they chew and shred the papers and boxes. The problem starts when your little cute feline starts consuming some parts of chewing. This leads to bigger problems like intestinal blockage and health problems.

Additionally, when you notice your cat is chewing on the cardboard boxes be cautious of the items the boxes hold inside. Placing sharp objects and storing utensils like a knife will only damage your pet.

How to deal with this?

If your cat is chewing because of the compulsive disorder or because of baby teeth, try placing cat toys to chew on. This may distract your pet from chewing on cardboard boxes.

Keep your boxes out of reach for the little one.

Revealed: Why Do Cats Like Boxes So Much? | Purina

You can use some perfumes which taste or smell bad for the cats. This will prevent them from trying to chew on and slowly leaving behind the habit of chewing on the cardboard.

Change your cat’s diet plan and try for a week or so. This may be because of deficiency caused by food intake.

Spend time with your pet. If your cat initiated this behavior since it’s boring, then you must spend time and play with your little pet. Obviously, you bought that since you are bored. Turn off your TV, keep your smartphones away and play with the cat.

Consult a veterinarian

If none of the above said worked for your cat, then it is recommended to consult your cat to a veterinary doctor. This may be an irregular habit which in prolong periods may turn into a serious problem.

Do let us know what method worked for you, how is your cat responding to the new changes that you brought to your home, and much more.

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