Cat chewing and biting paws until the skin bleeds – how to stop

Here are a few reasons why a cat may suddenly start to meow a lot and chew its paws until the skin starts bleeding.

Stress and anxiety

Sudden changes in a cat’s behavior could be a result of something in the environment that’s making your cat anxious. It could, for example, be the introduction of another cat. Start making some observations around the cat’s environment and consider any recent changes that may cause your cat to hurt itself by chewing its paw excessively. Pheromone diffusers like Feliway may help your cat calm down in the short-term.

Allergy issues

Have you been feeding your cat anything new? Your cat may suddenly start to chew its paw due to issues with food allergens. The allergic reaction could be isolated around the cat’s paws. The irritation might be too much for the cat so it can’t itself but to chew until the paw skin starts bleeding. Allergies aren’t only caused by food. Your cat could also be chewing its paws because of flea bites. Make sure your cat is on the appropriate flea medications if it spends regular time outdoors.

Other health issues

The sudden chewing behavior and the resulting bleeding of the skin could also be due to other underlying health issues, many of which won’t be clearly visible as it’s part of cat’s instinct to try and hide their illnesses. We would strongly recommend calling a vet for advice if the cat’s sudden chewing behavior is no longer a one-off.

How to treat bleeding skin

It’s important to treat the cat’s bleeding skin in a timely manner. Open wounds are always an unwanted invitation for bad bacteria to enter the cat’s body. If your cat allows you to, try to flush the bleeding skin with clean water then apply a dry dressing/gauze on top of the wound.

Disclaimer: The content is not intended to be a substitute for professional veterinarian advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of a veterinarian when in doubt.


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