Why is my Cat Biting its Tail? 5 Reasons and Remedies

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Why is my Cat Biting its Tail?
Why is my Cat Biting its Tail?

The tail is a crucial body part in felines. It aids in balancing, achieving appropriate posture and gesture. Experts can tell the information a cat is trying to pass by the curves of its tail.

Once in a while, you will bump on you feline nibbling, tapping, whipping, biting or hooking the tail. All these movements mean something. The arcs never lie.

Whenever you see a cat bite its tail, then you have got all the reasons to worry. The news your pet is trying to pass may be pressing and heart-wrenching. Here are the five cardinal reasons why your cat may bite its tail.

1. Infestation from Fleas

Furs in the feline tail provide conducive environments for the survival of fleas. They act as a blanket that provides warmth for the tiny pests during cold seasons such as winter. They also act as hideouts where they can actively draw blood for nourishments, reproduce and raise their young ones.

In the homestead environment, your feline can pick fleas from any corner. The consequences of feline flea infestations are hyper acting. Flea bites around feline tail cause itching and hypersensitivity. Oftentimes, the cat will scratch around the infested areas or vigorously bite the place hence leading to the creation of wounds.

In severe infestation, you will see the tiny pests jumping from one place to another. However, where you are not able to see the fleas, turn your pet on the back and start thoroughly check its tail. Some other places that are popular to infestations include ears, armpits, groin and belly.

Under infestation, you can use either of these four techniques to eliminate fleas from your cat. First, use a flea comb over the body of your feline to remove the fleas. Secondly, you can use a special shampoo to bathe your cat.

Third, a flea spray can help a great deal where the first and second options do not bear fruits. Lastly, you can inquire with your vet on the ideal nematode treatment options for your buddy.

2. Injury

Accidents not only happen to humans alone. Even cats do undergo injuries. However, unlike other places such as the limbs, the cat’s tail is an extension of its spinal cord. Meaning, any injury to its tail is so serious in the sense that it can easily cause death. Common causes of tail injuries in felines include; dislocation, bacterial infection, abrasion, nerve damage, laceration, self-mutilation, degloving, bite wounds and fan-belt injuries.

Tail injury trauma is so traumatic. And, since your cat lacks complex communication channel to tell you about the pain, it will nibble or bite its tail.

Most mild injuries heal on their own. However, this does not mean you should not do anything tragic and more serious injuries can lead to amputation. Medium-level injuries may need surgeries and use of antibiotics. The type of medication to administer to your cat primarily relies on how intense the injury is. Talk to your vet for assessments and Xray before doing anything.

3. Wounds and Growths

Other than a scratch from pests infestation, your feline’s tail can attract wounds through several other methods. The skin of your cat can be compromised under ulceration, abnormal reactions to drugs, burns and scalds, scratches resulting from fights and bacterial infections.

Wounds in cats do not develop in a blink of an eye. They take time to gradually intensify. Unless they are as a result of burns, the wounds will start to develop as tiny patches. As the cat nibbles, bites and scratches the patch, it develops. Otherwise, most wounds normally heal on themselves.

Scrapes and bruises are not intensive. Without aggressive scratching or biting from your cat, they will normally heal by themselves. You will always know them from missing hair, minor bleeding and swelling in the tail.

Life-threatening wounds such as those from third-grade burns, ulceration and abnormal reaction to drugs demand a lot of care. First, assess the wounded place and wash it off while applying an antibacterial drug around it. Then take your little buddy for medication from a certified institution or consult your vet.

4. Stud Tail

A stud tail is a feline condition similar to acne in human beings. It affects almost all species of cats whether feminine or masculine. However, the condition is popular among unneutered males.

Stud tail results from excess secretion of oil by the sebaceous gland. As the males’ hormones skyrocket during the onset of puberty, it undergoes a sexual maturity that is accompanied by the production of oil that normally clogs the pores found in the area between the feline tail and back.

Under an abnormal condition known as supra-caudal gland hyperplasia, the secreted sebum in the unneutered male will clog these pores and extend on the tail.

As the secretion increases, the fur between the back and tail become greasy and shiny. A study tail will also become swollen at the base. Besides, the stud becomes overly depressed and start to nibble, bite or chew its tail.

Generally, stud tail is easy to diagnose from a glance. A glimpse of the swollen tail and shiny hair in conjunction with puberty is enough to tell you whether the pet is suffering from this condition. some other symptoms to look for include blackheads and comedowns, loss of hair around the tail, secretion of pus around or along the tail, swollen skin and red bumps on the tail.

To prevent stud tail in cats neuter your male pets after every three weeks while frequently shampooing or bathing them with an antibacterial agent. Medication for stud tail includes the use of steroids and antibiotics and ointments such as benzoyl peroxide.

5. Stress and Anxiety

Cats are just like human beings. Sometimes they become active and jovial. Other times they become stressed and anxious. Certain species of cats even undergo a series of mood swings depending on the natural factors in their immediate environment.

A stressed cat becomes moody, aggressive and naturally isolates itself from others. Some other insightful behaviours to look out for in a stressed cat include urination in the wrong place, decreased appetite and biting or nibbling of the tail.

By eliminating the stress-factor, you stand a chance to prevent your buddy from biting its tail. You can do this by playing with the cat to make it active and ensuring that its residence is safe and comfy. Otherwise, it does not harm to seek your vet’s advice since the stress can emanate from a disease or even internal injury.


The tender care of feline starts from knowing how to decode messages passed through various body parts. Your cat does not need to cry to portray a sombre mood.

The curve in the tail and bites or nibbles tell it all. These five bulletins help a great deal in knowing why your cat bites its tail.

Updated: January 5, 2020

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