Q My cat can be snoozing, but if I take a piece of paper or cellophane or foil and form it into a wad, she instantly wakes up and looks like she is ready for a hunt. She loves crinkly sounds and will run after a paper ball if I toss it down the hallway. If I rattle a paper grocery bag, she comes running. She will actually jump inside the bag if I leave it on the floor. What’s the big attraction of crinkly-sounding objects for cats?
A Even though these everyday household items are inanimate, the crinkling sounds they produce mimic the high-pitched chatter of birds, crickets, mice, and rats, thereby triggering a cat’s predatory response. Your cat’s imagination is fully engaged as she pretends these items are the real deal. You are giving her the chance to hone her hunting skills and show off a bit in front of you.
Some cats show the same interest in shiny objects. A few breeds, specifically Manx, Japanese Bobtails, and Munchkins, have a tendency to collect and hoard glittery objects, such as jewelry and silver coins, and stash them in strange places, such as inside a shoe or underneath a recliner.
To learn more about your cat’s behavior, purchase The Cat Behavior Answer Book from Catnip.