Cat with loud crunching noise when chewing

by Scott

My 21 year old male cat has a renal disorder that has been going on for about 3 years. He does not eat much and has lost lots of weight in the last 6 months so he is now very thin and weak. When he eats(soft can food)he makes a very loud crunching noise that sounds like he is chewing on bone that can be heard all over the house. He does not seem to be in any pain.

This has been going on for about 6 weeks. I know he doesn't have much longer to live but I am continuing to support and care for him as long as he is not in pain or discomfort.

Any ideas what could be causing this?



Hi Scott
Well it could be that as he has lost weight he has also lost muscle tone meaning that the bones in his body have little support and are more likely to start to rub against each other.

My old cat had a illness which meant that she became painfully thin and in the end she broke her leg simply because their was not enough muscle to support the leg.

It could be a similar situation with your cats jaw. However an examination of the jaw area would be need to make sure that there was nothing else wrong. But as you say as long as the cat is able to eat properly and does not appear to be in pain then i don't think there is much you need do. I'm not even sure a vet would be able to do much anyway.

God bless you for taking care of this poorly kitty.


Comments for Cat with loud crunching noise when chewing

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My 20 year old Kiki just started making this noise!
by: SB

Kiki will be 20 in a couple of months. She started with this squeaky jaw and reduced appetite about 10 days ago. The vet saw nothing of note inside her mouth and she doesn't squirm when we palpate her jaw. I showed my vet a video where you can clearly hear to squeaking in her jaw. She suggested it was the result of muscle mass loss due to age. I worry that the pawing at her cheek indicates she's in pain -- the last time she did this a few years ago she had a mouth ulcer.

My 20 year old cat does this too!
by: Gary

It's REAL loud like she is eating very crunchy potato chips. She doesn't do it with wet food. Only dry food and treats. REALLY weird noise though. I assume it has something to do with age, because it seems that's where all the comments are. My little girl is 20 years old. She's hard of hearing a bit, but still has about 25% hearing. Her sight is perfect though, and no cataracts. She can see me coming from about 30 yards away in the dark or light.. She's lost some weight but otherwise is healthy. Probably has a good 2-3 years left. But yes! what is that crunching noise!

FIP/Vaccine reaction?
by: Anonymous

Our cat had the same issues after a 3yr rabies vaccine.
Her condition rapidly declined. She lost half her weight in a week, would not eat, not enough energy to run (and she runs from everything), started showing signs of neural and ocular degeration.
She also started making a sound that sounded like she was chewing on rocks when we did force feed her soft food or even water. It gave me goosebumps.
After confirming multiple FIP-related symptoms, we had her checked and confirmed fluid buildup in abdomen, another tell-tale FIP symptom. But the blood test came back... No FIP detected... Considered putting her down, then found FIP miracle drug, which is also a powerful broad-spectrum antiviral, so even if not FIP, it would likely help.
We treated with GS-441524. Within 2 days, she recovered. We continued the course of treatment, which was not fun with daily injections, but she was on deaths door and now a year later is perfectly healthy.

loud cracking noise when my cat eats soft food
by: deb

My cat has started making a loud cracking noise in his jaw when he eats wet food. He also started pawing at the right side of his mouth. He was recently diagnosed with Liver disease when his bloodwork came back with high enzyme level. He still wants to eat and im not sure if he is in pain when that cracking starts. Is this something that anyone has experienced with their cats? Is there a wet cat food that I can give him that he does not have to chew? I am feeding him the churos food that comes in a tube and is a yogurt consistency. Also feeding him canned pate but he cracks alot when trying to eat that. Dont want to see him hurting... Thanks

If your cat is pawing at his mouth it is definately worth getting checked out. My cat did the same and it turned out he had a very fine bone or twig loged in the roof of his mouth which the vet quickly spotted and removed. Pawing at the mouth is a definait sign that the cat is feeling something there.

So glad I read this
by: Vicki

Our 18 year old Eddie has kidney disease, major lose of weight, also total loss of hearing and eyesight in recent weeks. The crunching sound that has been described here is exactly what alarmed us yesterday. Since he is not in pain we are keeping him comfortable but this column has reassured us that this is proper care. Our hearts are breaking but we don’t want to upset him with a Dr visit. Thank you for this information!

Possible kidney failure
by: Anonymous

Crunching sounds while eating seem to be a sign of kidney failure according to some articles I've been reading.

My cat does it to
by: Tootsies mom

I know my baby doeant have long my vet diagnosed him with crohns disease affecting his liver he is also anemic and has lost all his weight. All skin and bones. This sound started about a week ago it is loud creaking sound he is also drooling out of his left side his cbin is always soaked. The vet said he didnt have long just keep him comfy. He does get a shot once a week to help ease the chrons but nothing more he can do. My bany still eats and drinks even with the noise. I am just loving him every min i can. Breaks my heart.

Crunching noise here, too
by: Anonymous

Yep, my 18 yo cat does this too. She had a stroke a year ago and turns to the left. She's gotten used to this life, but this is new for a week or so now. It's a strange sound. Like spinning one of those vintage metal noise makers. What in the world could this be?

My cat is making same noise since a seizure/stroke
by: Anonymous

My 19 year old is making the same crunching noise when she eats. It started after a long seizure/stroke. She turns her head to the left, and seems to be making the noise on the right, like TMJ? I will take her to a Vet who is a chiropractor for pets, to see if anything can be done.

my cat makes crunching noise to
by: Anonymous

my cat is also getting up there in age an also has lost weight and is now making a crunch sound but he is not in any pain he still eats fine and i do believe it is just from his age.he stills runs around the house and plays.

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