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Cats won't stop getting into trash can

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 

Hello,

 

I have two cats that I have had for about a year.  I have left the cats alone in the house every weekday when I went to work with no problems.  A few weeks ago, one of my cats apparently discovered the trash can in the kitchen (it has always been there) and ever since he is almost constantly standing on his hind legs trying to get into the trash and tearing at the bag.  Several times already he has knocked the entire trash can over spilling garbage all over the floor while I am gone and he has even done it twice while I was out of the area for a few minutes taking a shower (most recently this morning).  No matter what I do I cannot get him to stop.  It is extremely frustrating because I now cannot even leave the kitchen without carrying the garbage can across the house and locking it in the bathroom where the cats cannot get at it. (I have two cats but Hobbes is the one who is overly curious and always picking at the garbage.)  I have read that the proper way to discipline cats is to ignore them but I obviously can't ignore them spilling trash all over the floor.  What can I do to get them to stop this?  I can't always be locking either the cats or the garbage can away every time I leave the house or take a shower. 

 

Thank you.

post #2 of 25

Maybe invest in a heavier can with a tight, heavy lid where it would be harder for the cat to get into? Or can you move the can in a cupboard under the sink or something?

 

Monet likes to get into my garbage too. It's harder for me because I have little choice but to hang a plastic bag on a handle of a cupboard. I have a small galley kitchen and no room for a real can, not even under the sink! If there's something tempting in the garbage, I have to put it outside my entrance door where he can't get at it. It's annoying, I know :(

post #3 of 25
Thread Starter 

I have thought about that but there is not much room in the cabinets under my sink so I'd have to buy a smaller trash can.  I was hoping to avoid doing this though.  They left the trash alone for an entire year and are only recently knocking it over.  (I don't think a different trash can in the same spot would work because they knock the entire thing over and I'm sure any lid that wasn't bolted on would still fall off.)

post #4 of 25

This reminds me of Emily's silly habit. Every day Mom threw away a rubber band from the local newspaper (before they switched to plastic bags). Just to get that rubber band, Emily tipped the trash can over and went halfway inside to dig it out. The rubber band's final destination? Her food bowl LOL. I did not want to make her stop having fun because she was not hurting anything, so I just let her do it.

 

If your cat is eating trash or making the floor dirty, buy a trash can with a lid and foot pedal. Cats can't get to the trash even if they tip it over and I don't think they would want to tip it over if they can't see the trash inside.

post #5 of 25
Thread Starter 

My current trash can actually has a lid.  They knock it over and the lid pops open.  I'm afraid they'll eat something in there that's not good for them.

post #6 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris86 View Post

My current trash can actually has a lid.  They knock it over and the lid pops open.  I'm afraid they'll eat something in there that's not good for them.

Emily never ate a rubber band or showed any intention of doing so.

 

Cats are not raccoons. They swallow what will fit in their mouths like paperclips, but do not chew up bigger items.

post #7 of 25
Actually, Emily, cats have little "hooks" on their tongues (that's why they feel so rough when they lick you). If something like a string gets caught on the tongue, the cat often cannot expel it, and there's only one way for it to go, and that's down.

This is the garbage can we use in our kitchen - no lid to knock off if tipped over. Heavy base - doubt they could tip it over. http://www.simplehuman.com/products/trash-cans/ (Don't buy them from that site!!! They are expensive, but not AS expensive elsewhere. For us, it was worth the peace of mind. And our can has lasted ... six years, so far).
post #8 of 25

I think the worry about them eating something harmful from the trash is a valid concern.  I'm lucky to have a cabinet for mine or I'm sure my cats would be pulling all sorts of food out.  I'd go the smaller trash can inside a cabinet route.  I know its a bit of a pain but look on the bright side....with a smaller can the trash will go out more often and have less chance to get stinky.  :)

 

 

Quote:
The rubber band's final destination? Her food bowl LOL

This made me smile.  My Emily likes to plop milk jug rings (and sometimes feather toys) into her food bowl.  She then chomps down on them while she eats.  I think she likes something with texture to munch down on while she eats her pate food.  I think she would like the raw food diet if she could rip and shred and really sink her teeth into things.

.

post #9 of 25

You could just place something really heavy in the bottom of your garbage can. We had a garbage digger too (Buddy). Had to stuff the can in between something and put something heavy on the lid. He tried a few times after and soon gave up. Haven't seen him around the trash in months and months.

post #10 of 25
Thread Starter 

Maybe I can find some bricks to put in the bottom of the can.  They rip the plastic bag (the top of the bag sticks out near the lid) to shreds so I can't close the bag up with the drawstring proper but maybe they'll stop this eventually if they can't get in the can anymore. 

post #11 of 25

My trash can lid actually locks.  My cats were getting into the trash and pulling things out then my puppy would come along and eat whatever they pulled out.  After having to get my puppy an xray from a chicken bone incident, I bought a trash can with a locking lid.  Its a little silver handle that you push in,  and they cant open it.  Trust me, a new trash can is cheaper than xrays!

post #12 of 25
Thread Starter 

Ugh.  There were some leftover chicken wing bones in the garbage that my cats knocked over this morning.  Hopefully they're all accounted for.

post #13 of 25

We put all food type trash in the freezer.  This includes chicken skin, drippings, and paper towels used to wipe up drippings and things like that.  Not only does this keep the kitties out of the trash, it keeps the trash from stinking up the house.  (We only have trash pick up once a week.)  On the night before trash day, we throw the freezer stuff in the trash and haul it to the curb.
 

post #14 of 25
Thread Starter 
I don't think I want to keep garbage in my freezer.

So I tried putting some bricks into the bottom of the garbage can so that the cats couldn't knock it over. I was in the restroom for a few minutes today and when I came out I heard some banging around in the kitchen near the trash can. I went in to chase the cat away but I didn't see him anywhere. Then I heard the trash can banging around again. I opened the lid and my cat was sitting inside on top of all the garbage. This cat is ridiculous.
post #15 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by LDG View Post

This is the garbage can we use in our kitchen - no lid to knock off if tipped over. Heavy base - doubt they could tip it over. http://www.simplehuman.com/products/trash-cans/ (Don't buy them from that site!!! They are expensive, but not AS expensive elsewhere. For us, it was worth the peace of mind. And our can has lasted ... six years, so far).

Just in case you missed it, I'm posting the link to this garbage-can suggestion again. Sorry the bricks didn't work out. Oh - and DH pointed out it hasn't been six years we've had the can, it's been eight.
post #16 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by stephanietx View Post

We put all food type trash in the freezer.  This includes chicken skin, drippings, and paper towels used to wipe up drippings and things like that.  Not only does this keep the kitties out of the trash, it keeps the trash from stinking up the house.  (We only have trash pick up once a week.)  On the night before trash day, we throw the freezer stuff in the trash and haul it to the curb.

 
yeah.gif I do the same, especially now, feeding raw..... The meat was already in a ziplock bag, I just return the ziplock bag to the freezer..... Not because the cats get to the trash can, but because it will stink up the house.... And Dallas is hot, the trash truck comes every couple of days, so I put it out the night before they come. Don't want rotten meat outside on the sun either agree.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chris86 View Post

I don't think I want to keep garbage in my freezer.
It's only trash after you put it on the trash can.... before that, it is food dontknow.gif
post #17 of 25
Quote:
Originally Posted by Carolina View Post

It's only trash after you put it on the trash can.... before that, it is food dontknow.gif

 

Exactly, there's nothing yucky about it. I put all meat leftovers into the freezer, we have bins outside but it cuts down on odours and flies. I just put the frozen things in before taking the bins out for collection. 

 

Indoors I don't bother with a rubbish bin, and just take rubbish outside as needed. If I had to have one I'd put it under the kitchen sink, in a cupboard. 

post #18 of 25
Just a thought about your trash in the kitchen. A friend of mine mentioned that if you like milk, ( I buy chocolate ), save the milk jug. Clean it out and cut the top off. You can easily place a grocery handle plastic bag in there for the food trash. I love it because when its full, pull it out and throw it away ( cat has not discovered it yet ) do not have a solution for our "garbage monger" cat other than already mentioned - get a lid or heavier garbage bin. Also, when the jug starts to get funky, get more milk biggrin.gif

Cheers!
~Patty
post #19 of 25

Thats a tough one.. I would say try putting the trash in a cabinet like under the sink or if you have a closet or somewhere where they cannot get at it.. or maybe get a trash can that cannot be opened...

post #20 of 25

I realize this is an old thread-but one of my cats (the one that can open doors and cabinets-BOO!) gets in the trash. I bought a heavy stainless steel can with an attached lid that you step on the bottom plate to open..it worked for awhile but this cat still finds a way to open it. I'll hear a rustling noise and open the trash can and there the cat is-lying on top of the garbage and eating whatever she can find. Drives me crazy. Squirt guns used to work-it chases them away but as soon as she licks herself dry she goes after it again. I'm afraid one day my husband will take the trash out and throw the cat away!

post #21 of 25
Baby Bruce is attracted to tampon wrappers, come home and they'll b one downstairs, on the step, in the bedroom. Happened on numerous times so far nothing but I hav'nt been away from the house either.
post #22 of 25
Cutepixie93, that made me smile and remember something Frannie used to do when she was a kitten. She loved new tampons in the wrapper and would carry them around in her mouth, like a dog with a stick laughing02.gif She was so happy, I hated to take them away from her. I wonder if the scent the manufacturers put in tampons is attractive to cats?

I can't keep my youngest out of the bedroom trash. She love shiny things, like candy wrappers and bits of plastic. I worry that she will swallow something.
post #23 of 25
Lol aaaaws Bruce loves the bathroom, can't leave the toilet seat up or he'll play in the water. He loves the bathtub, he always runs to the bathroom when I'm going to take a shower. He walks up and down rail and bat at shower curtain. When I get out I notice he'll get in and he likes to lick up the water.
post #24 of 25
Hi I have three female cats that won't stop getting into the trash I have giving countless whoopings (that has worked in the past) but they still get into the trash. I sometimes forget to put the can in the bathroom
post #25 of 25

"whoopings" don't work in the long run on cats, they just make them afraid of you. I would invest in a trash can with a lid and put a brick in the bottom so they can't pull it over. My cats have never got in the trash, the only ones I've seen do that are ferals when they are hungry. Are yours getting enough to eat? I have hard food out all the time. My cats have never been overweight either. Good luck and post us when you find a solution!

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