Toys for a string-obsessed cat
March 3, 2014 2:47 PM   Subscribe

My cat Hopper is obsessed with chewing on string, dental floss, Rainbow Loom bracelets, loose threads, wires... which is horribly dangerous for her (and frequently horribly disgusting for me). Any suggestions for safe toys that will satisfy her linear needs? She doesn't have any teeth but magically is still capable of chewing through things.
posted by The corpse in the library to Pets & Animals (13 answers total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
I wonder if a baby toy like this would make her happy?

Also I would like to nominate this thread for Best Use of Pet Pics in an AskMe.
posted by phunniemee at 2:52 PM on March 3, 2014 [10 favorites]

Our Annie likes a Fling-Ama-String. Shes beat up the string pretty good, but shes clawed, and deadly.
posted by Jacen at 2:58 PM on March 3, 2014

25 feet of heavy cotton cord. Something along the lines of this. Knot the ends to keep it from fraying too badly and to provide carry-holds. My mum's cats adore this thing, they carry it up the stairs loudly, down the stairs loudly, back up the stairs loudly... you get the picture.
posted by anaelith at 3:05 PM on March 3, 2014 [1 favorite]

My cat loves his six-inches of scrap clothesline rope. He's had it for months.
posted by mibo at 3:22 PM on March 3, 2014

Similar to anaelith's heavy cord, my cat enjoys a strip of fleece with a knot at the end. It was originally about 1" wide, but stretched and rolled up to be a little thinner. Good for games of chase- and she also likes sit and paw at it until she's got it all piled up next to her.
posted by Secretariat at 4:01 PM on March 3, 2014

One of my cats has a bright blue feather boa that she drags from room to room while loudly moaning the song of her people at 3 am. The boa started out 6' long but is down to about 18" due to wear and tear. The boa appears to be made of individual short strands of downy feather fluff trapped within multiple strands of extremely soft and fragile cotton, the whole thing sort of falls apart if you unwind it but otherwise it stays together. I have another cat who is a string eater in the house but she hasn't tried to eat the boa.

I can also tell you which toy to avoid: this fleece strip on a stick sold as a cat toy. A good sized section of one of these partially obstructed my string/fabric eating cat's intestines. She's fine now but that was very scary.
posted by jamaro at 5:16 PM on March 3, 2014 [3 favorites]


It takes AA batteries, and sort of eats through them.

My cat adores it, though.
posted by rue72 at 5:51 PM on March 3, 2014

[Folks. OP knows string is dangerous and is not anon if you want to send non-question-answers their way]
posted by jessamyn (staff) at 6:02 PM on March 3, 2014

My string-eating cat is chomping on a Cat Dancer as I type this. You'll need to check the wire every now and then to make sure it's not pokey, but other than that it's pretty durable and the cats seem aware it's a nonfood.

Our cats also like the plastic rings from milk jugs, which seem to satisfy their stringy-wirey chomping needs; for a more durable, easy to chomp but hard to swallow equivalent, I'd suggest something like these. She'll probably have a hard time eating something firm without an end.
posted by Metroid Baby at 6:48 PM on March 3, 2014

I use a thin leather (fake leather) ladies belt for this. I sort of twist it around in my hand while I'm dragging it along the floor, so that it looks sort of like a snake wriggling. Drives my cats batty. And they can gnaw on it all day and it has held up pretty good.
posted by backwards compatible at 5:56 AM on March 4, 2014

Our little beast (who has chewed apart more headphone cords than I care to think about) loves these things. She bats them around and tosses them up in the air for play time and will chew on them at quiet time.
posted by bowmaniac at 7:48 AM on March 4, 2014

My kitten loves his (long wide) shoelace.
posted by bluesky78987 at 8:01 AM on March 4, 2014

Answering my own question: I went to the pet store today and picked up Hopper's new best friend / worst enemy, Stella the Cork Comet. Thanks for all your answers; I'll be picking up those toys when the thrill is gone from Stella.
posted by The corpse in the library at 10:41 AM on March 4, 2014

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