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Help! Taz is eating his sisters whiskers

Jon Spelbring

Savannah Kitten
Title kinda says it all. Taz and his little (Bengal) sister, Sophie have bonded well. They play together sleep together, groom each other. But, we're discovering that Taz is a compulsive chewer. Having pretty much destroyed all of the house plants (all cat safe), he's moved on to Sophie's whiskers. Within a couple of days, he's chewed off all of her whiskers!

Is this "normal" behavior for a Savannah? Any suggestions on how to get him to stop?

John Popp

Site Supporter
It depends on what you ascribe to as normal for a Savannah. I tend to believe none of them are normal, with varying degrees of eccentricities.

Our boy Jester, a domestic short hair used to do the same. He also chewed off the fur at the end of the other cats tails as well as his own. He was the only one of the 3 that had whiskers left and all of them had blunt tail ends. He eventually stopped on his own, but their tails looked so ridiculous that they appeared to have had the fur cut off the end with a pair of scissors. His tail was so bad for a bit that the last inch of it was hairless and of course the other cats would never allow him to get that far.

Again, just something that went away on it's own and I was happy when I didn't need to explain it away to guests.


Staff member
I don't think that is a savannah specific behavior. Ixas used to chew Cinny's whiskers and as John's boy, stopped on his own...

Trish Allearz

It's a normal cat/kitten behavior- not breed specific. It's no big deal and I don't think there is too much you can do about it. I think they tend to grow out of it.

The Kasbah

Momma cats sometimes participate in chewing the whiskers of the infants. Saezar, the more dominant of my two F1 house pets has routinely chewed off Sergei's whiskers since they were about 6-months old...and still does it today, some 10-years later. It is often done by the more dominant cat and the less dominant cat is "clean shaven" as a result. It is not harmful to either. I will admit that it looks funny, but I believe it has everything to do with pecking order...and is a nonviolent way of showing dominance. :)

Brigitte Cowell

Staff member
It is a general cat behavior, not Cynthia says, momma cats can sometimes do it to keep them in the nest. I think the idea is no whiskers they have no sense of spaces and so will stay closer to the nest...

I'd not had this happen here until Nina arrived two years ago. She does it to the kitties she loves the most... they look a bit funny but I think it relatively harmless...

All my cats would chew house plants though! LOL!