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Why Do Cats Pee On Plastic Bags: Strange Yet Common Habit

Why Do Cats Pee On Plastic Bags: Strange Yet Common Habit

Noticing your cat peed on a plastic bag, out of all places, is always a strange sight to see. Not only is it totally random – but there’s a perfectly fine litter box for them to use! If this happened in your household, then you probably started wondering, “Why do cats pee on plastic bags?” After all, that’s what got you here!

We’re here to tell you that it’s a really common experience among fur parents, no matter how strange it might seem. Plastic bags fascinate kitties all over the world. Whether it’s because of the noise, the smell, or the texture – our feline friends love to play with them, bite them, or even pee on them.

I know you wish you and your fur baby spoke the same language, but our cats still find a way to communicate with us. This change in behavior, although strange, is your cat’s way of saying you need to change something.

There are many reasons why cats pee on plastic bags, and most of the time it’s nothing serious. Don’t worry. However, it’s still good to know what caused this strange act and what they’re trying to tell us. Listed below are some of the main reasons why it happens, so let’s see what made your fluff do it!

Why do cats pee on plastic bags: 7 most common reasons

We know, there’s nothing simple about trying to understand cats’ behavior. It’s completely fine to ask yourself what in the world is your kitty trying to tell you now. Sometimes, it’s really not easy to understand their ways of communicating – especially when they pee at random places.

If they chose a random plastic bag as a place where they’ll go wee, they probably need you to change something up. Sometimes, however, it’s just cats being cats, and there’s not much you can do about it. So, let’s get into it! Here are the 7 most common reasons why cats pee on plastic bags.

1. They hate their litter box

Why Do Cats Pee On Plastic Bags: Strange Yet Common Habit

You’d think there’s not much to look into when you’re choosing a litter box for your feline buddy – but that’s where you’d be wrong. Your cat will definitely prove you that. Look at the size of your fluff and think about the size of her litter box. Does it seem too small for her?

If your answer is yes – then that’s where your problem probably lies. If your cat feels claustrophobic or caged in her litter box, she’d prefer to go anywhere else but there. To solve this issue, you can try getting a larger litter box or moving the current one to a more open area.

If her litter box seems perfectly fine for her size and it’s in a nice open area, try changing her litter. Cats are picky with many things and texture is one of them. How in the world is a plastic bag better than the expensive litter you got your feline diva? Well, there are some factors to consider.

Plastic bags are generally softer than litter and cats are big on texture. If something feels weird under their paws they’ll avoid it at all costs. Some cats can’t stand the feeling of clay pellets, cat litter, or any other alternative.

If that sounds like your diva, you may also find alternatives that her little paws will enjoy. Until you do, you’ll probably find her peeing on plastic, your couch, your plants…no one’s safe. But at least you know what’s the real issue there.

2. You need to clean their litter

One thing cats absolutely hate is a dirty litter box. Our fur companions are known as one of the cleanest pets you can have, and they’ll avoid a dirty restroom area until you clean it. No matter how bad they have to go, our clean cat babies would rather pee on a plastic bag than use a dirty litter box.

You’d hardly find a person who’d use a dirty toilet, so why would it be any different with cats? To avoid this, make sure you’re cleaning your fluff’s litter box regularly. It’s a quick job and it makes a huge difference. After all, would you rather clean her litter or pee from your floor?

3. They love the sound and texture

The insides of many cat toys are made from a material that sounds just like crackling a plastic bag. Although their love for plastic bags seems random, there’s actually a really interesting reason behind this phenomenon.

It is believed that our little hunters adore the sound of bags because it mimics the rustling sounds of prey in nature. Birds, mice, and other small animals make a noise in the grass or dry leaves, which is why the sound of bags triggers your purrer’s hunting instincts.

If this is the case, you can provide your cat with an alternative. There are many toys made of a material that makes a similar sound, but you can also invest in a good cat tree.

If you want to treat your little climber, look for a tree with a sisal rope wrapped around it, as it will make a rustling noise. Another good alternative is a scratching post covered in burlap. Whatever you choose, your furbaby will absolutely love you for it, so don’t rack your brains too much.

4. Appealing smell of plastic

Why Do Cats Pee On Plastic Bags: Strange Yet Common Habit

Besides the sound and texture, some cats LOVE the smell of plastic. When you think about it, you must have noticed your kitty rubbing her face all over your containers or bags at least once. For you, the plastic smell might not be pleasing at all, but our feline buddies absolutely adore it.

Why cats do it isn’t a mystery, but there’s a pretty nerdy reason behind it. Some scented products, including plastic, carry a natural substance called 2-phenyl ethanol. Your kitty’s sensitive nose might be picking on it, too, which could be why she rubs her face all over it.

There’s another theory that cats are attracted to animal fat that’s been used in plastic synthesis for years. In modern times, it’s a highly used ingredient in biodegradable plastics. So, in reality, your cat isn’t really attracted to the smell of plastic itself. It’s the animal fat she smells, which seems a lot more probable.

5. Your feline is anxious and stressed

We all want our furchildren to be happy, joyful, and at peace at all times. But, just like humans, cats can experience stress and anxiety, too. When that happens, our babies will find a way to try and soothe themselves. It could be excessive licking, purring – or being obsessed with bags.

But why do cats pee on plastic bags? Does it mean that your cat’s been anxious or stressed lately? Honestly, this could be the reason why. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to try and help them.

First, find out the reason why your cat’s been feeling anxious or stressed lately and try to alleviate it. For example, if your kitty’s been anxious because you’ve just welcomed a baby into your home, try to limit her time with it.

If your cat’s been experiencing severe anxiety, however, it’s best to visit a vet. There’s a lot of medication that can help calm your fluffball down and reduce her stress levels. You should never give this medication without consulting a vet first because they’ll tell you which supplement suits your cat best.

In no time, your fluff will be her joyful, happy self, and you’ll be able to enjoy your time together again. These things are normal and common, so don’t stress too much about them. Remember – your cat can sense your emotions, too, so try to be her rock.

6. It’s a way to mark the territory

Why Do Cats Pee On Plastic Bags: Strange Yet Common Habit

It’s well-known that cats are territorial creatures. In nature, cats mark their territory with urine and it’s probably the last thing you wanted to hear as an indoor cat parent. If there’s another pet in the house, your cat might be peeing on plastic bags to assert dominance and show them who’s the queen of the household.

If you recognize this as a possible reason behind her behavior, there are some things you can do to stop her from doing it.

First, make sure she has no issues with using her litter box. It should be big enough for her and in a calm and private area. If there’s another cat, make sure they’re not using the same box. Cats don’t like to share; as it will deter them from marking their territory.

Another thing you could try is using a pheromone diffuser in your home. These relaxing chemicals can calm down your kitty’s nerves and make them less defensive of their territory. Soon enough, your home will be a peaceful place filled with love, while also smelling nice. At least better than cat pee mixed with plastic.

7. There might be a medical reason

Last, but definitely not least – if none of the things listed seem like possible reasons, we hate to tell you but your cat might be having some underlying medical issues.

If it happens once, you probably have nothing to worry about. However, if your cat has been continuously peeing on plastic bags, you should probably pay a visit to your local vet station. A quick check-up could help you understand why she’s been acting so strange lately.

The most common health-related issues that could make your cat pee on plastic bags are urinary tract infections or feline lower urinary tract disease. These conditions could lead to inflammation and blockages in the urethra.

Although all of it sounds super scary and serious – you don’t have to worry. These conditions are easily treatable with medication and some lifestyle changes. Your vet will give you a clear diagnosis and a bit of advice on how to deal with it.

How to stop your cat from peeing on plastic bags

Once you figure out why do cats pee on plastic bags, let’s see what are some things you can do to avoid it. They’re all pretty simple but it’s still better to go over them so you don’t miss anything.

1. Rule out the medical issues first

Before you go on to any other option to stop your cat from peeing on plastic bags, it’s important to do a wellness exam for your feline queen. Pay a quick visit to your vet and have your cat examined.

Many kidney and bladder problems could cause your cat to pee in random places, so it’s best to check it out first. These issues are pretty common and they often result in a cat refusing to use her litter box.

If your vet says that your furbaby is perfectly fine – congrats! You’re now a happier fur parent, so let’s move on to other things you can do to prevent it from happening.

2. Get more litter boxes

If there’s a cat war happening inside of your house’s walls, then you must make sure all your feline friends have their own litter boxes. In fact, make sure you have one extra just in case!

If your cat is an only child, you might still consider getting another kind of litter box and seeing which one she likes the best. Make sure the litter boxes you choose are all different based on their size, type of plastic, or height.

Another thing you can try is getting different types of litter and adding them to different boxes. Let your fur queen decide what she likes the best and give her some time to try them all. In the end, you’ll have a happy cat, and you’ll sleep better at night knowing you won’t find her peeing around your home.

3. Hide the plastic bags – simple but effective

Why Do Cats Pee On Plastic Bags: Strange Yet Common Habit

Lastly, if nothing works, then there’s only one thing you can do – hide your plastic bags. Yes, this one is pretty simple and logical, but it’s definitely the most effective one.

Sometimes, cats pee on plastic bags just because it’s fun for them and they like the sound of it. In that case, there’s literally nothing you can do. You can’t punish your cat for being a cat, so the only thing you can do is follow logic. Don’t leave plastic bags on your floor and your cat won’t pee on them!


Cats will be cats. There can be many reasons why she decided to pee on a plastic bag today and it’s up to you to decipher them. That’s the fun part of being a fur parent, isn’t it?

One thing you can do is put yourself in your cat’s shoes and look at the environment you’re living in. Is there anything bothering you? If the answer is yes, then you’re already on the good track to solving the issue at hand.

Why Do Cats Pee On Plastic Bags: Strange Yet Common Habit