I was in my store room digging out holiday decorations when I noticed movement in the corner. It was a spider, and my cat was eyeing it up. Before I could shoo the spider away, my cat pounced on it and started nibbling on its web. I had never seen anything like it before and wondered if there was some nutritional value in spider webs that my cat was after.
As it turns out, there are a few reasons why cats may eat spider webs. One is that spider webs are high in protein, and cats are carnivores who need lots of protein in their diet. Another reason is that spider webs contain a chemical called chitin, which can help with digestive problems. And finally, some experts believe that spider webs may help cats fulfill their instinctual need to hunt and kill prey.
So if you see your cat eating spider webs, don’t be too alarmed. It’s probably just trying to get some extra nutrients. But if you’re worried about your cat’s health, always consult with a veterinarian.
Reasons Why Cats Eat Spider Webs
Here I’ll discuss some of reasons why cats may be inclined to nibble on spider webs.
1. A Source of Protein
Yes, I said it. One of the reasons cats may eat spider webs is for the protein. Just like us, cats need protein to help maintain a healthy body and support various bodily functions. And while most cats get their main source of protein from eating meat, some may turn to other sources, like spider webs, when meat is not available or is not appealing.
PICA is a condition in which people or animals eat non-food items. And while it’s not clear why some cats develop PICA, it’s believed that it could be due to a lack of certain nutrients in their diet or a psychological condition. If your cat is eating spider webs, it’s best to take them to the vet to rule out any underlying health issues.
3. Teeth and Gum Cleaning
Another reason cats may eat spider webs has to do with dental hygiene. The sticky nature of spider webs can help to remove plaque and other debris from teeth and gums, giving them a nice, clean surface to work with. And we all know how important it is to keep those pearly whites healthy and sparkling!
4. A Sense of Satisfaction
As I mentioned before, cats are natural predators of spiders. So, when they see a spider web, their instinct is to hunt it down and kill it. But since most spider webs are too tough to be eaten, the next best thing for a cat to do is to nibble on it. This gives them a sense of satisfaction and allows them to practice their hunting skills, even if there’s no actual spider prey involved.
So, there you have it! Three possible reasons why your cat may be eating spider webs. Now, I’m not saying that every cat will engage in this behavior. But if you do happen to notice your feline friend nibbling on a web or two, don’t be alarmed. It’s actually quite normal.
Dealing PICA in Cats
It’s hard to prevent PICA in cats since the underlying cause is unknown. However, to make this concept real easy I talked a vet that and she suggest me few ideas. Here I’ll mention some of the things you can do to help prevent your cat from eating spider webs or other non-food items.
1. Keep Your Cat Stimulated
One way to help prevent PICA in cats is to keep them stimulated. This means providing them with plenty of toys and playtime so that they’re not bored. Cats who are bored are more likely to develop PICA as they look for ways to entertain themselves. So, make sure your cat has plenty of toys to keep them occupied and engaged.
2. Feed Them a Nutrient-Rich Diet
Another way to help prevent PICA in cats is to feed them a nutrient-rich diet. This means making sure they’re getting all the nutrients they need from their food. If you’re unsure about what kind of food to feed your cat, ask your vet for recommendations.
3. Keep Their Environment Clean
PICA in cats can also be triggered by a dirty environment. This is because dirt and grime can contain harmful bacteria that can make your cat sick. So, it’s important to keep their environment clean and free of any potential hazards.
4. Provide Them With Access to Water
One final way to help prevent PICA in cats is to make sure they have access to water. This is because dehydration can also lead to PICA as cats look for ways to quench their thirst. So, make sure your cat has plenty of fresh, clean water to drink throughout the day.
What to Do If Your Cat Eats Spider Webs?
If you’re concerned that your cat is eating too many spider webs, there are a few things you can do to discourage the behavior.
1. Offer an Alternative
One way to discourage your cat from eating spider webs is to offer an alternative, like a toy or a treat. If your cat has something else to focus its attention on, it may be less inclined to nibble on spider webs.
2. Keep Your House Clean
Another way to deter your cat from eating spider webs is to keep your house clean. This means regularly vacuuming and dusting to remove any spider webs that may be present. And, if you have a cat that likes to go outside, consider keeping it indoors to prevent it from coming into contact with spiders and their webs.
3. Provide Nutritional Supplements
I know I said that one of the reasons cats may eat spider webs is for the protein. But, if your cat is not getting enough protein in its diet, it may be more likely to engage in this behavior. To prevent this, make sure your cat is getting all the nutrients it needs by feeding it a balanced diet and/or providing nutritional supplements.
4. See Your Vet
If you’re really concerned about your cat’s web-eating habits, or if the behavior is accompanied by other strange symptoms, it’s always best to consult with your veterinarian. They can rule out any underlying medical conditions that may be causing the behavior and offer additional advice on how to discourage it.
Expert Vet Thoughts on Why Cats Eat Spider Webs
Dr. Jennifer Coates, DVM says that “Cats are known for their curiosity, and that may lead them to nibble on all sorts of things, including spider webs. Some people believe that cats eat spider webs because they are attracted to the prey that may be entangled in them. Others think that cats simply enjoy the taste or texture of spider webs.”
If your cat is eating spider webs on a regular basis, it’s important to take them to the vet for a check-up to rule out any medical issues. Once you’ve ruled out any medical causes, there are a few things you can do to try to stop your cat from eating spider webs.
First, make sure that your cat has plenty of other food options available. If they’re only given dry food, try adding some wet food or treats to their diet. You might also want to try feeding them smaller meals more often throughout the day.
Second, provide your cat with plenty of toys and playtime. Bored cats are more likely to turn to spider webs for entertainment.
Finally, if your cat is eating spider webs because they’re stressed or anxious, try to create a calm environment for them. This might include using a Feliway diffuser to help reduce their stress levels.
I hope this post was helpful in understanding why your cat may be eating spider webs. If you’re concerned about your cat’s web-eating habits, be sure to take them to the vet for a check-up. Once you’ve ruled out any medical causes, there are a few things you can do to try to stop your cat from eating spider webs, like providing them with plenty of other food options and toys.
If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to leave them below. I’d love to hear from you!