Why does my cat eat the sanitary sand?

Maybe you’ve ever seen your cat eating the sand from your box and do not understand this behavior. This is due to a syndrome called pica , which consists of the ingestion of non-nutritional objects, because in addition to sand, they can eat anything else like plastics, fabrics, etc. This syndrome can be due to many things, from a poor diet to stress problems and even to some more serious illness. It is best to take your cat to the veterinarian to give you the necessary tests and help you find out what causes this behavior, but in this article of ExpertAnimal we will explain why your cat eats the sanitary sand .

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The pica syndrome

If you see that your cat has a tendency to chew and eat all sorts of objects , whether food or not, like sand from the litter box, for example, we may begin to suspect that he suffers from itch. This syndrome, also called malacia, can cause serious health problems in the animal, since the ingestion of objects can cause you to suffer from health problems of all kinds.

Usually this behavior indicates that the cat suffers from a lack of nutrients and minerals in its diet and so begins to ingest other things. Environmental factors such as boredom or stress can lead the cat to suffer from this problem and may even have a more serious illness that can only be diagnosed by the veterinarian.

Power Problems

If you are not feeding your cat well, you may have a lack of nutrients and minerals that you will try to feed by eating other things, even if it is not food. In this case, you should study your diet, what kind of food you are giving, if it is of good quality and covers all your nutritional needs, how many times a day you feed it and if you need some supplement.

If you are wondering why your cat eats sand and believes it can be a feeding problem, it is advisable to take it to the vet because with an analysis you may know what your furry is missing and may recommend a diet best to improve your health and end this behavior.

Stress, anxiety or depression

If you’ve ever wondered why your cat eats sand, and you know perfectly well that you’re getting the nutrients you need in your diet, the answer may be stress . Anxiety, stress, and depression cause many behavioral problems and can lead your cat to eat the sand of his box, among other things.

Think about what can cause cat stress , whether you have recently moved, whether you are spending too much time alone or if a loved one died recently, for example, and try to cheer him up by spending more time with him and giving him toys and nurturing.


If you observe the symptoms of a bored cat , and see that he finds no way to pass the moment, he will look for alternative activities. These animals are very curious and like to play, to scratch, to climb, to chase things, to hunt, to bite, but if your feline does not have ist, you can start to eat the sand of your litter box simply out of boredom.

If you spend many hours alone at home, be sure to leave him toys and objects that you can entertain with , you can even look for a new playmate.


Cats are very curious animals, especially when they are small, and want to know everything that surrounds them. One way to do this is through experimentation, so it is possible to lick or ingest some grains from your litter box.

If the cause is curiosity , you will see that, although it swallows some grain, it will spit out most of them, and this behavior will not be repeated again. You should not worry about this, because you will learn that it is not food and will not try to do it any more.

Other diseases

Sometimes the reason is none of the above, but then why does your cat eat the sand from the box? There are some diseases that can cause your cat to eat stones and sand, in addition to other objects, and that should be diagnosed by a veterinarian. These diseases can cause a lack of nutrients, minerals or vitamins and cause a voracious appetite, such as diabetes , leukemiaor peritonitis .

How to avoid this behavior

While the sand ingestion persists, the most important thing is to remove the stones from your litter box and place newspaper or kitchen paper in its place. Then you will have to see what the problem is that your cat may be suffering.

If you believe that the problem can be stress, boredom or depression, you should try to spend more time with it, create a quiet environment at home and provide games and entertainment.

In case it is a food problem you will need to buy good quality food and feed that will cover all the cat’s nutritional needs. In addition to taking him to the vet to have a checkup and his exams, in case of having an illness. A specialist is the one who can best help you with these kinds of problems.

This article is purely informative, in YourCatCareguide.com.br we do not have the capacity to prescribe veterinary treatments nor to make any type of diagnosis. We suggest you bring your pet to the veterinarian in case of any type of condition or malaise.

If you want to read the similar articles, click here , we recommend that you enter our section on Other health problems .

Emily Harris

Hi Guys, Girls, and Cats:-p I am Emily Harris, and you can see in above pic. She loves me I swear. I saved her from a dumpster a few weeks back.

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