Why Does Your Cat Chew Plastic Bags?
21 December, 2016
cat chew plastic

Our cats have been known to chew on our clothes, our furniture and even our fingers.  And, plastic bags are a favorite among items for cats to gnaw or tear apart.  An occasional chew here and there won’t hurt your cat, but if the chewing occurs regularly, it is something that needs to be addressed as it is dangerous and unhealthy.

 What’s the appeal of a plastic bag for your kitties?

Plastic bags that come from a grocery or other food store can carry the lingering scent and even taste of food, which makes chewing them a pleasant experience. Many bags are also coated in substances such as cornstarch, stearates (salts of stearate acid), or are made of animal by-products such as gelatin, which makes them attractive to cats. Cats can also enjoy the crinkly noises that a plastic bag makes.

Cats might chew on plastic bags because there is something going on with their teeth

Another reason that cats will chew bags can be related to their dental health. If you find your cat chewing on a bag, you should schedule a trip to the veterinarian to make sure her teeth are in good order is important. You may also want to discuss with your veterinarian your cat’s diet, as chewing on odd objects can be a symptom of insufficiency in daily dietary needs.

Your cat might be chewing on plastic because he is or she is bored

Finally, boredom can be a major factor in habits like these. You should come up with way to keep your cat safe from the bags wand and enrich your cat’s physical and mental needs and keep your kitty occupied.  Both would help prevent your cat from chewing on bags.

Your cat might be chewing on plastic bags because your kitty is anxious

Has anything in the environment changed?  Did you add another cat or even change your work schedule?  Cats are so sensitive and used to routine that any change might make them anxious.  And, chewing on plastic is a stress-reliever for them.

Tips to keep your cat from chewing plastic bags.

Since chewing on bags is dangerous to your cat’s health, make sure your cat doesn’t have access to them.  Dispose of any bags that are just lying around and/or make sure they are in a safe place that your cat cannot get into, such as a locked cabinet.

If you add other toys or enrich your cat’s environment, that can help them fill fulfilled

Increase your daily play time with your cat as well, which can help tire your cat out both physically and mentally. Look for toys that your cats can use on their own to keep them occupied during the day.  Even a little mouse has been known to keep your kitty throwing and chasing it.  Interactive food toys, where your cat has to hunt for food within the toy, are also a good way to engage feline minds and bodies

If your cat continues to gnaw on bags after seeing a veterinarian and enriching his or her environment, there might be a bigger issue at stake.  A cat behaviorist might be able to point out what is behind the plastic bag chewing.

4 thoughts on “Why Does Your Cat Chew Plastic Bags?”

  1. Great article! One of my cats (I’m looking at you, Abbey!) loves to chew on plastic bags, so I put them away as soon as possible. I had no idea that bags can be coated with those substances – thanks for the information! 🙂

  2. Fortunately not, but Sisi chews on cardboard boxes, in my mum´s home she had chewed on the cabinet too, but if cats chew on plastic etc. that´s called Pica Syndrome, so Sisi has a mild form of that….

  3. Great article! There is another reason why cats love to chew on plastic bags.The way they are made/processed. Common factor is they are processed with fish oil. We can not smell it but the cats can and some, not all cats love to chew on them.

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