Cats bite power cords- advice needed

Help! Our cats bite through power/electrical cords!

Not only am I worried about them, but we’ve had to replace two computer power cords-

Is there any advice among the collective wisdom out there about how to keep cats away?

A deterrent spray? anything?

Mother used to keep them off her car with cheap pepper. Perhaps pepper sauce smeared on your cords. It is rumored that they don’t like citrus, and I believe there are sprays for that purpose.

Tabasco Sauce. Smear it all over the cords and they’ll stay away. Even after it wears off (if it does), they remember, and they don’t go back.

Yes, but then my husband will be nibbling on the cords! :smiley:

Good advice, both- thanks!

I dunno… Sounds like a self-correcting problem. :smiley:

Just kidding! Jeez!

Tabasco might work, but it seems to me that the residue would collect dust and it might be a little smelly. Do they chew anything else? I wouldn’t provide an unplugged power cord as an alternative, but maybe you can find something they’d rather chew on?

No problem - just smack him on the nose with a rolled-up newspaper. That always works.

I came in here expecting this to be about guitars. Unfortunately, there was no ‘h’ in the title.
Carry on.

Some stores sell tubes that you can run cords through, which would make it so that the cats can’t get to the cords to chew them. Alternatively, you could try wrapping them in tinfoil.

There is a spray called Bitter Apple that is designed to be put on whatever you don’t want a dog or cat to chew. Your local pet store would probably have it, or someone there could tell you where you can get it.

Make sure the cats have plenty of toys.

Thanks for the bitter apple spray advice.

The cats are funny about this- they have tons of toys, scratching posts etc that they use all the time, but when one of the laptops come out, oh the allure of the computer power c(h)ord! They don’t chew anyother cords (lamps, TV etc).

Funny little kitties!

They don’t move, and aren’t attached to you. :slight_smile:

That never worked for me (or the Bitter Apple stuff either). My cat would just sort of gnaw at the cord with lots of drool until enough got washed away that he could bite with impunity. My cat was horrible. His favorites were phone lines and those skinny cords with the converters that are impossible to get good replacements for. He also nibbled my keyboard cable and it melted into the carpet. :eek:

I just kept all the cords away from him. He wouldn’t bite regular cords like you’d find on a lamp, just the ones listed above. So I duct taped everything to the walls (using white duct tape so it didn’t look totally ghetto) and wrapped covers around bundles of things like computer cords. It was a pain in the ass but eventually he grew out of the gnawing stage. Now he only does it when he’s out of food because he knows I conditioned to wake up instantly when I hear him gnawing on a cord.

Whatever you do, don’t upgrade your house to 220…

Start cheap until you find something that works. My wife bought a bottle of “cat repellant” to use where he was scratching. He licked it off of every surface he could find it on, and then chased us down to lick the residue off our hands.

Rub the cords with soap. Plain old ordinary soap.

Some of this stuff should at least slow them down.

At your next visit to the vet, you might want to have the cats tested for tartar on their teeth. Chewing plastics with the right kind of chewy hardness might be their way of trying to clean their teeth. For a price, the vet can clean your cat’s teeth.

If your cat’s breath smells bad, that might be another clue somthing is wrong with it’s teeth. .

I came in to say “tabasco,” because that deters my cats. But maybe you could give them a piece of used up old cord (not plugged in) as a chew toy?

If it’s just the laptop cord, the solution could be as simple as charging up the laptop somewhere where the cats can’t get at it or its cord, then running it on battery when you’re actually using it.

Another possibility is that they see the laptop as a rival for your attention. If there’s more than one person in your house, could one of you play or otherwise interact positively with the cats while the other works on the laptop? They may be doing it because they know that, when the laptop comes out, they’re going to be ignored, and chewing on the power cord is a way to stop you from ignoring them. When they chew on the cord, you do stop working on the laptop and pay attention to the cats, so they’re getting what they want out of that behavior (if that’s why they’re doing it).

Or try hissing at them when they chew on the cord. That’s what a mother cat does if she sees her kitten doing something it shouldn’t (or so I’ve read).

Or you could just shut the cats out of the room while you’re working on the laptop, if that’s feasible given the setup of your house and where you like to work on your laptop.

Getting their teeth cleaned might be another good idea. My Katya used to chew on cardboard all the time. We had the vet clean her teeth, and we suddenly stopped seeing teeth marks in cardboard. It’s not going to be cheap, but bad teeth is a common problem in cats, and one you should deal with if your cats have it.

I think I’d start with foil, if keeping the cats away from the laptop or distracting them while you use it isn’t an option. Cats supposedly dislike the sound of foil crinkling. Foil is something you almost certainly already have around, it’s cheap, and it’s not going to stain or leave lingering odors in carpeting, furniture, walls, or clothes.

Don’t touch her if she standing in place, and you hear buzzing.