Growing up, we always had at least one cat in the home. Our house was a zoo, filled with multiple cats and dogs during most years of my childhood.
When I was little, I saw one of my cats eating a spider web for the first time. The cat ate it just like it was her cat food. I was shocked. I couldn’t believe that our house cat would eat something so weird or disgusting.
I ran to my parents who told me that they would take the cat to see a vet. Luckily, she was okay. As I grew up, I found that this happens more often than most people realize. Cats not only eat spider webs but they devour them. Why is this the case?
Cats Eat Spider Webs for Nutrition
While there are a lot of reasons why cats eat spider webs, they all come back to nutrition. Some cats eat spider webs simply because they like them and they are packed with protein and carbohydrates.
In other cases, cats might have a nutritional deficiency that has to be corrected. This is why it may be a good idea to take the cat to see a vet.
Spider Webs Have Nutritional Value
First, it is important to note that spider webs have nutritional value for cats. They contain protein, carbohydrates, and other important nutrients that cats need to power the essential functions of their body’s organs.
Now, it is important for all cat owners to note that eating a spider web in and of itself is not necessarily dangerous to a cat and it is probably not harmful to their health. Still, it is important for cat owners to note when their feline friends are eating spider webs because this might indicate that there is a health problem present.
That is why it is a good idea for cat owners to consider taking their cats to see the vet to get checked out. A vet can look over a cat from head to toe and make sure there is nothing else that should be done.
In other cases, cats could be eating a spider web due to a nutrient deficiency that is present. This is something that would have to be addressed.
There Could Be a Nutrient Deficiency Present
As noted above, cats also could be eating spider webs to replace a nutrient deficiency in their diet. Because spiderwebs have protein and carbohydrates, cats might eat spider webs in order to replace nutrients that they are missing.
All living things have a tendency to gravitate towards nutrients that they need to keep their bodies alive. This is why people feel thirsty when they need water and develop cravings for sugar and carbohydrates when tired.
If a cat’s body has a shortage of something, they develop a craving for that the missing ingredient. This could be why cats are driven to eat spider webs.
Because of this, this is simply another reason why cats that eat spider webs should visit the vet. Vets can run blood tests to take a look and see if cats are hypoglycemic, losing weight, missing protein, or deficient in other carbohydrates.
This could explain why the cat is driven to eat spider webs. Then, the vet can recommend that steps should be taken to correct the cat’s nutritional deficiencies in a healthier way.
This could include switching up the food, providing supplements, or even providing an IV boost. All of this is done to place the health of the cat first.
Concerns for Feline Pica
There is a disorder called Pica that, they manifest in people you are anemic. Anemia is used to describe a deficiency in red blood cells.
When people are deficient in red blood cells, they are driven to eat bizarre things and effort to replace the iron that they are missing. This could include dryer sheets, ice, dirt, cement, and even sponges.
This disorder is called Pica and it can be developed by cats as well.
If a cat has developed feline Pica, this is another reason to take the cat to the vet. The vet can talk about ways to control feline Pica. The first step is to make things that look appealing to cats become unappealing.
For example, specific to spider webs, this would mean removing them. If the cat has a tendency to eat other objects, it might be a good idea to coat them in substances that do not taste very good.
Then, cat owners can take steps to distract cats with chewing toys. The sort of distraction therapy is another way to address feline Pica. Finally, the vet might also recommend that the cat visit a specialist in animal behavior.
Should Cat Owners Worry About Spider Web Consumption?
Finally, if cat owners see that their cat is eating spider webs, they often wonder if they should worry. The answer is that it is a good idea to be a little bit concerned.
This concern should rise to the level of taking the cat to see the vet. The vet can then recommend additional steps that need to be taken or state that it is no big deal.
Now, there’s no reason for cat owners to become extremely alarmed and think that their cat is dying; however, this behavior is not considered normal. On the other hand, it is also not uncommon.
For this reason, if cat owners see that their cat is eating spider webs, it is important to teach them not to do that. Think about distracting them toys to see if the behavior goes away on its own.
If the behavior persists, then the level of concern should rise. This will be another thing to inform the veterinarian so that, if appropriate, the vet can recommend an animal behavior specialist.
Furthermore, the vet is going to ask if the cat is eating other weird things. Therefore, it is important for cat owners to remain vigilant. This means looking around the house to see if there is evidence that the cat is chewing on other items.
If a cat is eating spider webs alone, this may not be as big of a deal. On the other hand, if the cat is also gnawing on furniture, eating paper, and going after carpet, and this is something that the vet needs to know.
The vet might do further testing at this point to make sure that there isn’t a bigger issue arising.
Consider Providing Supplements to the Cat
If a vet states bat the cat has a nutritional deficiency, then he or she may recommend nutritional supplements. These supplements are designed to improve the nutritional value that is present in the cat’s normal food.
This is why supplements are a very common addition to the diets of numerous house cats. Lots of cats have a nutritional deficiency of some sort that needs to be corrected.
When it comes to choosing a nutritional supplement, there are lots of options from which to pick. Therefore, it is a good idea to talk to a vet and think about which one your cat needs.
For example, there are some supplements that focus on increasing a cat’s protein, while other supplements focus on certain vitamins or minerals.
They were using supplements that can improve your cat’s immune system to make sure that infections are kept at bay.
It could also be a good idea to provide your cat with more treats. Teaching your cat how to play with toys and treats is a great way to distract them from spider webs.
While most cat treats are devoured a matter of seconds, there are also cat treats that take longer. They may present a puzzle to challenge your cat or simply be more durable than typical treats.
Regardless, the goal of treats is to not only provide them with your nutritional value but also distract him or her from the spider webs.
If a cat is eating spider webs, the next step to take us to take the cat for a check-up at the vet. In some situations, eating a spider web might not be a serious issue. In other cases, this could be a sign of a bigger problem.
This is why cat owners need to rely on the information from trained experts when it comes to cats eating spider webs.