If your cat has been licking everything, this post will show you a number of likely causes and what you can do about them.

So, why does my cat lick everything? Likely reasons why your cat licks everything are that it is thirsty or hungry, it is anxious, it is grooming, compulsive behavior, illness or a diet issue.

There are a number of possible reasons why your cat licks everything and it might be due to a combination of them. However, there are some things you can consider to help figure out the main cause and there are some things you can do about it.

Reasons why your cat licks everything

Below are a number of possible reasons why your cat licks everything and what would make each of them more likely.

Thirst or hunger

The reason why it has been doing it might be that it is thirsty or hungry. This would be more likely if it starts to lick things more when it does not have access to water or it has not eaten in a while. It would also be more likely if it does it right after being active and it does not have access to water. It could also be the case if it has started doing it after a change in its diet.

In this case, it would be important to make sure it has access to water whenever it might need it and that you are feeding it correctly.

Anxiety

The cause could also be that something has been causing your cat to be anxious.

This would be more likely if your cat licks things more in situations where it might be anxious or if it has started doing it more since something happened that could have caused it to be anxious.

It would also be more likely if something triggers it to do it such as the doorbell ringing. It would also be more likely if it does it repeatedly in the same area such as on the floor or the couch and there is no food there.

Grooming

Cats will naturally lick themselves a lot in order to groom themselves. They will often also lick other cats to help them groom themselves too. If your cat has been licking itself a lot or other cats it lives with, it is likely to be normal behavior.

Compulsive behavior

It might also be the case that your cat licks things a lot due to an obsessive-compulsive disorder. This is where it does an action repeatedly and it cannot stop doing it. This would be more likely if it has been licking things excessively over the course of weeks or months.

It is showing affection

Sometimes cats will also lick their owners. If your cat has been licking you a lot, it could be the case that your cat has been showing you affection. This would be more likely if your cat also purrs and kneads while doing it.

Illness

The cause might also be that an illness has caused it to have a sick taste in its mouth. This would be more likely if it has started licking things suddenly and if it has been showing other signs of being ill such as being sick. In this case, the best option would be to take it to a vet. 

Things to consider

Below are some things to consider to help figure out the main reason why your cat has been doing it.

If your cat always licked everything

If your cat has started licking things suddenly, it would help to consider what else happened when your cat first started doing it. If it started doing it suddenly, it could be due to things such as illness, a change in its diet or something causing it to get anxious.

What is different when your cat starts licking things

It would also help to consider if there is a certain time that your cat tends to do it since the timing might have something to do with it. For example, if it tends to do lick you when sitting down with you, it is likely that it is just showing affection.

What to do about your cat licking everything

Below are some options you have when dealing with the behavior.

Get help

If your cat has been doing it excessively, it has been showing signs of being ill or it is concerning you, the best option would be to take it to a vet. By doing so, you will be able to get expert advice tailored towards your particular cat and to rule out the possibility of medical causes.

Give it access to water

It would also help to ensure that it has access to water throughout the day since being thirsty could be the cause.

Ensure its diet its right

It would also help to make sure that it is getting the right diet since a poor diet might be contributing to it.

Author

I created and currently run Kitty Cat Tips, the website that you can go to when you have questions about your cat's behavior. It's my hope that you find Kitty Cat Tips to be a helpful resource. It is also my hope that it will help you to improve your relationship with your cat. You can read more about me and my website here.