Cats can suck on blankets or other fabrics for a number of reasons. If your cat is an avid blanket sucker, you may need to seek veterinary attention to rule out any medical causes for this behavior. To get the answer to why cats suck on blankets, read on!
Why Does My Cat Suck On Blankets?
Blanket sucking behavior in cats is a common phenomenon, however poorly understood. In most cases, this behavior does not indicate any abnormality or illness and it occurs in both male and female cats. It can begin as early as 4 months of age but typically surfaces around one year of age.
It’s calming for them
Just like people can get calmed down by sucking on a thumb or pacifier, cats can get calmed down by sucking on blankets. This is because it releases endorphins in their brains, which makes them feel good.
It helps them clean their teeth and gums
Cats have a tendency to clean their teeth and gums by licking them, and sucking on blankets helps to supplement this. Blankets can get pretty dirty, so it’s important for cats to keep their mouths clean.
It’s a way for them to comfort themselves
Some cats suck on blankets when they’re feeling scared or anxious, as a way to comfort themselves. This is because the act of sucking itself releases calming hormones in their brains.
It helps them regulate their body temperature
Sucking on blankets can help cats regulate their body temperature, especially if they’re feeling cold. By sucking on a blanket, they’re able to absorb some of the heat from it, which will warm them up.
It helps them relax
For some cats, sucking on blankets is a way to relax and calm down. This is because the act of sucking itself releases dopamine and serotonin in their brains, which make them feel good.
It’s a sign of affection
Licking and sucking can be a sign of affection for some cats, so by licking and sucking on their owners’ blankets, they’re showing that they really care about them.
It helps to comfort them during stressful events
If a cat goes through a particularly stressful experience, such as a trip to the vet, they might start sucking on their owner’s blanket as a way of comforting themselves. This is because it helps them release calming hormones in their brains.
It helps them bond with their owners
Sucking on blankets can be a way for cats to bond with their owners. They might do this by licking and sucking on their owner’s hands, which is often the first step in the process of bonding.
It helps them burn off excess energy
Some cats suck on blankets as a way to burn off any excess energy that they have built up, so it can help them feel calmer overall. This helps them to calm down, which makes their owner happier.
It’s a natural instinct in cats
It’s in a cat’s nature to suck on things because when they’re young kittens in the womb, they use their tongues to help themselves get milk out of their mother. This behavior often continues into adulthood – especially in those cats who were hand-fed as a kitten. Just like a baby sucking on a bottle or their mother’s nipple, this is a way for them to seek comfort and satisfaction, getting the same endorphins released into their brains as they did when they were kittens.
Sign of a health problem
In some cases, sucking on blankets can be a sign of a health problem, such as dental problems, a thyroid disorder, or diabetes. If your cat is sucking on its blanket excessively, it’s a good idea to take them to the vet for a check-up.
There are many theories on the possible causes behind blanket sucking behavior in cats. Some experts say that it is a form of the behavioral remnant from kittenhood when the mother cat would carry her kittens by the scruff of their neck to transport them. The sucking may be a way of keeping themselves secure and comforted.
Others believe that there is an association between suckling and getting attention, so they use this behavior to get their owners to come and provide them with the interaction they seek. In this case, blanket sucking is a form of attention-seeking behavior on the part of the cat.
In addition, some cats suck on blankets or fabrics out of anxiety or stress. This can be due to a sudden change in environment, such as a new pet or person in the home, or it can be due to a traumatic experience, such as being in a car accident.
If you have a cat that sucks on blankets, it is important to monitor its behavior and activities closely and to keep an eye out for any changes. If your cat’s blanket sucking becomes more frequent or intense, or if there are any other changes in your cat’s behavior or habits, be sure to contact your veterinarian right away.
Your vet can help you determine the cause of the suckling and how best to approach this behavior so that it does not become a bad habit. If necessary, they can also provide you with advice on how to begin breaking this habit in order for your cat to live a more comfortable and healthy life.