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Why Do Cats Like To Sit On Plastic Bags – What To Know!


If you’re a cat owner or cat lover, you’ve probably noticed that cats will sit anywhere. This is why there’s a common phrase, “If I fit, I sit.” From boxes to baskets and everything in between, they love curling up in any space they can squeeze into. One of the typical locations you’ve probably found your lovable furbaby is on a plastic bag. So, why do cats like to sit on plastic bags?

Cats love to sit on plastic bags because it clings to their bodies and makes them feel safe. Others believe the chemical that plastic bags are covered in attract their cats. Cats also feel the warmth the bag gives off when they lay in it. 

Regardless of the reason, it’s pretty unanimous across the board that cats love to sit on plastic bags. Continue reading to get additional details on why your furry friend loves them. 

Why Do Cats Hate the Sound of Plastic Bags

If you’ve ever replaced your trash bag while your cat was nearby, you’ve probably witnessed them dart out the room at the speed of light. While cats love to sit on plastic bags, the sound they occasionally put off can scare them. 

The sound the bag makes as you’re shaking it out to open it up and place it in the can is alarming to a cat. Cats are generally afraid of loud, sudden noises and instinctively will run off to take cover. It’s similar to starting up a vacuum. Cats don’t understand what the noise is and that it’s not dangerous. They just hear that loud sound and decide it’s time to get out of town!

Much like how a sudden, unexpected noise can scare people, it works the same for cats. Humans can reason and understand what the sound is and realize they aren’t in danger. Cats don’t have the same reasoning skills that we do to know that, so they go into survival mode. 

Why Do Cats Like to Sit Inside Plastic Bags

How often have you brought home your groceries and left a bag or two out after putting them away? If you have a cat, there’s a good chance you’ve found them inside that bag. Cats love sitting on top of plastic bags, but they also love to sit inside them. 

Cats love to curl up in small spaces. When they’re curled up in a plastic bag, it will make them feel safe and secure. Cats instinctively lookout for predators, and being in such a small space allows them to feel in control and alert. 

Just like cats love cuddling up to their mamas, they love snuggling up and feeling the bag embrace their bodies. Even though a plastic bag isn’t thick, it gives off a feeling of warmth from the plastic’s insulation that offers comfort. 

Why Do Cats Lick Plastic Shopping Bags

I learned a long time ago about the love cats have for licking plastic, compliments of my furbaby. My cat loved licking and chewing on any plastic he could get his mouth on. There are a few theories as to why cats can’t get enough. 

An influential theory surrounds the odors of food. Plastic bags tend to hang on to the scent of whatever was in it. If you went grocery shopping and had chicken or fish in the bag, it would make sense that the cat is attracted to it. They don’t realize that food isn’t in the bag anymore, so they lick it to try and get a taste.

It’s rumored that some plastic bags are partially made from animal fat, which attracts the cat. If your cat only goes after certain plastic products, this may be the case. If your cat likes to lick all plastic equally, it’s probably not the sole reason for their obsession. 

Another potential reason is that they’re anxious. Much like a human might pick at their nails or chew on their lip as a nervous habit, your cat may alleviate their anxiety by chewing and licking the plastic bag. 

Is It Bad For Cats To Lick Plastic Bags

While watching your cat lick plastic bags may not be your favorite thing in the world, it’s not necessarily bad for the cat. What you have to consider is if any medical reasons are causing your cat to lick the bag. 

As we previously discussed anxiety being a potential reason for licking, it may be something you would want to have your Veterinary look into. It’s always good to have a check-up done on the cat to make sure there isn’t an underlying issue that’s causing the problem. 

Also, keep an eye on the cat while they play with the plastic bag. If they are licking the inside of the bag and their head somehow gets stuck in it, the cat may start to suffocate. While this doesn’t typically happen, it’s essential to watch for. It’s a good idea to cut the handles off the bag and make sure your cat doesn’t get their head stuck and start to choke somehow. 

How Do I Get My Cat To Stop Licking Plastic Bags

One of the easiest ways to keep your cat from licking plastic bags is not to leave them out. Recycle your plastic bags as soon as you’re done with your groceries or find a spot to store them out of reach from your furry friends. I like to keep my plastic bags in a cabinet in my house with a childproof lock on the door. This prevents the cat from accessing the bags but allows me to reuse them. 

A guaranteed solution is cutting out plastic bags entirely. You can switch over to some reusable bags to carry your groceries, rather than standard plastic. It’s a great alternative that also helps out the environment. You can typically purchase these bags at your local grocery store. 

If your cat seems to lick the plastic as a nervous habit, try finding another way to help them relieve their anxiety. Much like a human, exercising cats can help alleviate stress and their pent up energy. Find a toy that your cat loves and take some time out of your day to play with them. You may be pleasantly surprised by how much more relaxed they appear. 

You can try spraying the plastic bags with a natural pet deterrent. Many companies offer different products to prevent scratching that can be used for chewing and licking. If you spritz a bit of the product on the plastic bags, it may be enough to keep your cat away from them. 

Can A Cat Die From Eating Plastic

It isn’t typical for a cat to die from eating plastic. Most plastic pieces tend to be non-toxic. Cats are typically okay if they swallow a small piece of plastic. The issue comes into place when the cats swallow a larger piece of plastic that ends up blocking their intestines. If an issue like occurs, the cat may need to have the piece surgically removed. 

The other thing you’ll need to keep an eye on is the type of plastic they’re eating. Suppose you see them eating plastic that previously held something toxic. Think about the bag you would use to carry in bleach and other cleaning products. Those are toxic for animals regardless, so if something somehow got spilled into the bag and the cat eats it, that could potentially cause harm to the cat. 

Overall, cats just love plastic. Take comfort in knowing that your furbaby is not alone with their somewhat strange obsession. Keep an eye on your cat while they play with the plastic to make sure they’re safe and let them enjoy!

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