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Keeping cats out of cabinets

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
Sorry if this is not the right section but I'm not sure what this would fall under!

So we recently moved to a new apartment. We are all settled in and so are the cats but the cats have found a feature of our new apartment that they really love.

We can't seem to keep them out of the cabinets or the closet that we keep the cat supplies in. We looked at some child proofing items like the little white plastic levers that go on the inside of cabinets to keep kids out but the cabinet still opens a bit with those and I'm pretty sure one of our cats will be able to squeeze in.

The problem with the closet is thats it's more or less a slab of wood with a handle on it. There is no hardware on the side that makes the door latch closed. So the kitties just put their paws under the door and it pops right open. Last night they got in this closet (even after I put a 20 lbs box of litter in front of the door) and ripped into a bag of cat food and helped them selves. There is also a closet with sliding doors that they keep getting into.
I've thought of door stops for the two closets but I would not put it past my cats to get them out from under the door and turn them into a toy.

So I guess my question to you all is, what have other people had to do in this situation?
post #2 of 22
With the cabinets, you can adjust how far they open with the child safety hooks. If you mount the hook receiver further back, it will open less. With the closet door, you need to find some way of latching them shut. A simple hook and eye hole set up would work, like most screen doors have. Minimal hardware installation.
post #3 of 22
All I can say is good luck hun. Many of our cats are cubbard openers, Elliott being the worst with Osiris, Cleo and Shadey right behind him. I have tried the child proof locks which will keep them OUT of the cubbard, but they would still always try, so all we ever heard was the "BANG BANG BANG" of them trying to get in!
post #4 of 22
About that bang, I forgot to mention this in my earlier post, they make rubber contact pads for putting on the edges of cabinet doors so they dont make noise when being slammed.
post #5 of 22
I put my food into bins with lids so that even if they make it into the closet, they can't rip open the bag.
post #6 of 22
I agree about the bins/tupperware tub things Not only does it keep them out but it keeps the kibbles fresh
post #7 of 22
I had to use the child proof hooks in the past for one cat. They worked for him.
But, I have a hook and eye type fastener on the fruit cellar door in the basement and my Claudio will open it when he wants lo. So if you install one of them, you may want to put it up high.

Wouldn't dowels in the sliding closet door work - like in a patio door?

post #8 of 22
Thread Starter 
I did not even think of the dowels or the hook and eye! I'll have to give those a go.
We do have a food bin but my fiance recently bought a large bag of food since it was on sale and not all of it would fit in the bin. We got about half the bag in since there was already food in the bin and taped up the bag.

I'll go ahead and pick up some of those cabinet child locks. I was not aware they could be adjusted. I can put up with the noise it might make from them trying to open it. I'd rather have them do that then keep getting into my cabinet of cleaning supplies and risk them getting sick! We went from a 4 bedroom house with a garage to a 2 bedroom apartment so we don't have as many storage options as we use to. And for whatever reason, the cats could have cared less about the cabinets in the old house but in the apartment it's all the rage.

Thanks for the tips! Gonna have to make a trip to the hardware store.
post #9 of 22
You can get child locks that go on the outside of the doors, also for the closet you can use a fridge child lock that's what I have on my free standing pantry, the fridge lock wraps around the side to hold it closed.
post #10 of 22
You can get Tot Locks, and they use a magnetic key that you slide across the front of the cabinet to activate the latch to open the door. The door won't open at all while the locks are activated. These are kind of pricey, though. About $20 for 4 doors worth, plus a key.
post #11 of 22
Another recommendation for hooks and eyes high up on closet or other doors.
post #12 of 22
There are appropriate child locks that prevent the cabinets from opening at all, or you can use fear.

Its not possible to get underneath my bed as its a solid unit to the floor, but at the very corner of the mattress there is a small opening that they can slip into, and then are impossible to try and eject from under there... dunno if they even get enough air.

Put a SSSCAT device under there though, and that scared the poop out of em and never tried THAT again.

Works to keep your cat off other dangerous areas as well. Just keep it there for a week, and then when learned you can remove it.
post #13 of 22
Jack is our master door opener (we can't get him to close the doors yet) - he hates closed doors. We had to get the child proof locks (the plastic sliding ones) and put on our one cabinet in the kitchen that has the cat/dog treats in there.

Believe me they cannot open the door wide enough to get in there. However, Jack knows when the lock is not fastened and he will open it! So you can use them for your doors.

I do suggest you find a plastic container with a tight lid to put your cat food in so the cats cannot rip open the bags.
post #14 of 22
Hydrox, The Old Coot, was an expert at opening cupboard doors. He knew that his dry kibble was kept under the sink in the cabinet and his catnip was usually on the second shelf of the cabinet above the countertop. He'd just help himself.

BooBoo is master of opening the pantry door in the kitchen. That's where his treat machine is kept. We try to latch it securely when we know we're not going to be home. But when we're at home, we like to keep it unlatched (for his personal entertainment, I guess). He knows that if he keeps at it long enough, the door will open and he can get inside to his treat machine. And I love to watch him "work for it".
post #15 of 22
Originally Posted by Momofmany View Post

I put my food into bins with lids so that even if they make it into the closet, they can't rip open the bag.

i do that too!  i have a 5 gallon bucket with a lid that i washed out really good.


for cupboards, i use thick rubber bands, like that come with broccoli.  i put them over the two handles on the cupboard doors.  the cats can no longer drag my plastic bags and dish towels across the kitchen.  though occasionally i will wake up to the sound of bangbangbangbang as kitty desperately tries to open the cupboard- but the rubber band snaps it back in place.

post #16 of 22

I have the white plastic childproof rings that attach around the outside of the knobs/handles, and yes, they will be able to paw it open. But I linked two together and it's able to keep it locked a little tighter.


Alternatively, there are childproofers that you drill into the inside of the cabinet, allows you to open it a little, press down, and open the cabinet fully. they do work very well.

post #17 of 22

Same problem handles on the cabinets.  My Siamese boy, Gideon, can open every cabinet in the kitchen, upper or lower.  His first foray was into the upper cabinet, after the cats treats.  Those now live in my underwear drawer, as the heavy dresser drawer is about the only place in the house he can't get into.  Then he went into the lower cabinets after the dog food.  They all eat raw now, so no more food bags to get into, but he still does a reconnaissance every day.  He can't open the drawers, so he goes into the cabinet underneath the drawer and scoops out stuff from the back of the drawer.


I had never seen the SSSCat thingy until someone mentioned it above....may have to check that out.  


post #18 of 22
First time cat owner, and it wasn't really by choice. Haha. Mine is seven months old and just figured out how to open cabinets. I had no idea how much of an undertaking this would be. Haha.
post #19 of 22

Duct tape. Of course if your cabinets aren't 30 years old they sell a variety of child proof latches.

If they are food raiding you might be able to just secure those doors.

If they are using them as sleeping hiding places you might need to address the cats in home needs and provide a more suitable spot. Since most of keep various soaps , chemicals for cleaning that storage space should be secured at all times. Kitten has an unholy obsession with the smell of bleach.

post #20 of 22

Good luck.  Hekitty can, does, and will open every blessed door, cabinet and room, in my house with the exception of the front door.  The action on that one is a little stiffer, but I keep it dead bolted just in case.  I, too, keep kibbles in bins, but she isn't going into the cabinets just to get to her food.  She explores, rearranges, and just hangs out in there.  And she never met a closed door that she didn't have an issue with.


My cabinets have no knobs or pulls, and my landlord won't allow any screw holes.  The edges have no place to put a child-proofing device.  So, "the cat's in the cabinet with the silvers spoons..."

post #21 of 22

This thread is very interesting and I can learn same time.


Mia is now very active cat and trying to open my kitchen cabinets.  


Thanks to this thread, very helpful  :-)

post #22 of 22

I think the best tactic (after having had cats that learned how to open - and teach others how to open - locks on a refrigerator) is to block it with something heavy. It it's higher up, perhaps put a rubber band around the knobs of the cabinet doors?

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