Oh yes, there is a condition that cats can have called PICA.....google it, it's eating strange and unusual items, not all that uncommon. I really don't know much abt it other than that it does exist. There's lots of info on the internet if you google it. Good luck:)
Way back when, I've had 2 cats who my vets told me couldn't have pica 'cause that was a dog condition.
Over the years I know that cats can get pica just as Opus says. So do your homework just in case you need to insist.
Regarding the chewing on cords & the oxygen tube that's very dangerous and needs to stop right away. There are spray products that you can find at a grocery store, discount store, pet store or at a vet's all which you spray around the cord and it smells like the dickens to humans for about 15 minutes, then dissipates so only the cat smells it. It is how I cured my little one from chewing on cords.
There are also toys that she can play with, attack, kick & chew on.
Do see the vet though.
Blessings to you and your furry friend,
Pica is neither a dog or cat issue, it's an issue that anyone can get, including people. I specialize in autism treatment and many of my clients have pica, and it often is actually a result of an underlying medical issue such as a deficiency of some sort. The body is amazing and if a child is eating dirt they often are deficient in the minerals found in dirt - meaning that the body craves what it is lacking. But pica can also be items that have no nutritional value, such as paper. etc. However, cats (and dogs for that matter) chewing on things is most likely not pica since pica isn't about chewing, it's about eating. Your cat may simply like the sensation of chewing. My cat loves chewing cords so I have to be careful with them, but the oxygen cord for your mother makes this an immediate issue, but the best solution will be preventative. I would start by blocking whenever possible, simply redirect her when she attempts it and perhaps place something around the cord to prevent it from being torn (they sell cord protectors). Also, fulfill her need to chew by offering appropriate chew toys. There are toys for cats that resemble tubes and can be chewed, so redirect her to these and reinforce this new behavior (with treats or pets if she finds petting reinforcing).
Spray products to block the behavior can be effective, but that is punishment so you want to also teach a new behavior that you can reinforce. But as was previously said, you need to change this quickly due to the oxygen cord so the spray could be a quick fix.
The key to changing this behavior is 1) altering the environment to discourage the behavior, 2) block the behavior when it is about to occur, 3) redirect to an alternative activity that meets the same need such as a chew toy, and 4) reinforce the new behavior
Hi, I think that PICA can result from possibly missing certain nutrients in a diet. I've read that somewhere before, but it was a long time ago. Can you give some details about what your kitty's diet is like? What brands she eats-soft food, hard food, and table foods?
I just came across a very interesting article about pica that I found interesting. Hoping that you will find it helpful!!