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Cat eating plastic bags

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

A little background: I got a 4 year old female cat from the local shelter about 5 weeks ago.  She had come from an elderly woman who had 20 cats and then became ill.  She had been at the shelter for 5 months because she was VERY shy and skiddish.  They had put her in foster care, but the greatest stride she made was eating from her foster mom's hand.  I took her home because I knew I had the patience for her and could give her the quiet environment and space she needed.  For the first month she hid under my bed, only coming out at night.  Last weekend, she started coming out during the day and will even approach me for love and scratches, though she still is a little skiddish:

 

Now the problem....

 

A couple weeks after I got her, I discovered that she eats plastic grocery bags.  I keep bags in my spare room to clean out the litter box....she had eaten holes in many of them, and I found some poop in her litter box that had pieces of plastic bag in it.  I took her to the vet, and they say she's fine thankfully.  I thought maybe it was just because she was scared, nervous, or bored, so I put all the plastic bags up and I make sure I don't leave any laying around.  Last night, she was cuddling with me on the couch and I had a plastic bag on my coffee table.  She got up and started sniffing the bag and then was going to start chewing on it before I took it away.  I took the bag over to the kitchen counter and put it up there, a little while later, she was trying to hop up on the counter to get to it.  I also noticed she had eaten a hole in a bag that I had some sugar snap peas in.  

 

Why the obsession with plastic bags?  Is it that she maybe smells food residue in there?  Is it possibly out of nervousness or boredom/  Does anyone have a cat who has done this in the past?  

post #2 of 6
One of our cats loves plastic bags for snacking. We have to be very careful about leaving them around because he's gotten sick. Fortunately, he never developed a blockage but I don't take chances. My vet said there was something sensory he's getting from it. All I can do is make sure he can't get to the bags.
post #3 of 6

I save grocery bags and keep them under the kitchen sink.  To keep them from flying all over the place, I tie them into a slip knot, so they are nice and condensed. 

 

Pippen LOVES to chew on them. 

 

I had a child lock on the cupboard that the bags are in, but the li'l monster managed to figure out how to pop it open.  So now I have strips of gaff tape on the door to keep it closed.

 

I don't know why he loves them so much... maybe the crinckly sound.

post #4 of 6

My cat loves to munch on the plastic bags in the house, sometimes it worries me! You know what they say once cats start munching on plastic bags they never go back to plain old cat food!

post #5 of 6

After I put the bag in the trash can,Bella will start nibble on it. Can this hurt the cat or not ?

post #6 of 6
I would just be afraid that a large enough piece of plastic would cause a blockage. That's why I don't let my plastic lover have the bags.
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