Animals eat the strangest things

Published 7:00 am Saturday, April 7, 2018

Animals are well known for chewing on things. From furniture, pillows, wood and even synthetic products, it’s our job as pet owners to ensure our pets don’t swallow harmful things. Sometimes it’s a difficult task.

From time to time I will see a carpenter ant in the house, which  the kitten finds entertaining. Not only does this cat enjoy playing with the six-legged creatures, I have seen her eat them.

Some extra protein in her diet certainly won’t kill her, although I do have concerns about the poison I’m using to control the ant population.

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Beyond the occasional potentially poison eating insect, there are greater concerns. For some reason cats find plastic delicious. Each and every cat I’ve ever cared for seems to think that plastic bags, wrap or even toys are for chewing and eventual consumption.

If even one piece of it finds its way to the floor, one of the felines can be heard crinkling plastic between their teeth. Foam packing peanuts present a similar challenge, especially for inexperienced kittens.

Shortly after taking ownership of the kitten, I received an order in the mail. After opening the package and leaving the box at the door for later disposal, I noticed she would jump into the box, retrieve a packing peanut and bat it around the house. Not thinking she would eat it, I let her be. But after noticing a lack of discarded pieces of foam on the floor even though she made several trips to the box to remove a peanut, I became suspicious. Sure enough, too far away to remove it from her mouth before it disappeared, I watched in horror as she chewed the small piece of potentially harmful material and swallowed it.

The box subsequently made the rest of the trip to the garbage can.

So, keep an eye on your four legged friends. They may be eating more than just pet food.