Why Do Cats Sit On Paper?-The Truth About This Odd Behavior

 Have you ever wondered why do cats sit on paper? If you’re a cat parent you may have noticed how a small square of paper can quickly become sat on!

From envelopes to newspaper, a cat will claim it as hers. In this post we’ll look at various reasons why cats are so keen to sit on paper, as well as other items.

From plastic bags to  cardboard packaging, you’ll find your curious kitty stakes her claim!  Even if your cat was in an empty room she’d still find that tiny post it note in the corner!

My cat knows the sound of the postman and rushes to the door. Instead of bringing me the mail, he sits on it!

Your Cat Likes Paper As It’s Warm 

One reason cats like sitting on paper is because it’s warm. In fact, paper is a great insulator.

This is often why you see homeless people covering themselves up with paper and cardboard. In fact it’s often suggested you could fold a paper towel over your foot before putting on shoes on cold winter days.

Anyway, I digress, so back to your cat! Paper reflects  back body heat, and as your cat’s body temperature is higher than yours she’ll feel nice and cozy on that A4 envelope.

You could even line your cat’s bed with paper for extra warmth. This could be a good tip on cold winter evenings.

Even though your cat is in a warm, centrally heated house, a snug bed is always welcome. Line with sheets of old newspaper, and place a blanket on top.

Cats Are Very Territorial

As you’re probably aware, cats are territorial animals. Personal space is important and in a multi-cat household each will have marked out his or her own territory 

Other cats will be banned from these areas,often resulting in fights! Your cat may well see that piece of paper lying in the middle of the floor as hers.The reason she’s sitting on it may be her way of marking it as her property.

Cats have scent glands on their cheeks and other parts of their body.  This is how cats mark out territories. Your cat rubs her cheeks on the paper releasing pheromones. 

It’s a bit like leaving a post-it note and would read “keep off, this is mine!” Most sensible kitties would adhere to the rules. However, you always get the odd rule breaker!

This is why your cat rubs her cheeks against you. She’s claiming you as hers. Other cats would smell your scent and know you belong to another cat.

Your Scent Is All Over The Paper

cat sitting on newspaper

As you may know, cats have an incredible sense of smell. In fact, it’s 14 times greater than a human’s.

The newspaper you’re reading is covered in your scent.  You won’t be able to smell it unless you’re wearing perfume though. 

This means your cat feels comforted by sitting on the newspaper as she feels close to you. However, this can be annoying if you’re reading it at the time!

Cats Sit On Paper To Get Attention 

If your cat thinks it’s meal time, she’ll do everything she can to get your attention. By sitting on the piece of paper you’re writing on She knows she’s got your attention! 

It’s the exact same reason your cat pounces on your laptop, or sprawls all over the keypad. You can’t ignore a determined kitty!

Why Cats Like Plastic Bags 

Many cat owners wonder why their feline friends love sitting on plastic bags. If your kitty is all over your grocery bags you’re not alone

There are many reasons for this behavior. Firstly, those plastic bags you bought home have the smell of food. 

Even though you emptied them and put all food away, your cat is able to detect food smells. Whether it’s from packaged salmon, minced beef, or other delicacy, your cat will love it!

As previously mentioned, cats have a far superior sense of smell. Although you can’t smell the remnants of food your cat certainly can.

Just like paper, ,plastic is a good insulator. Sitting on empty plastic bags can make your cat feel warm and secure.

It not only has food smells but your scent as well. This is why it’s so comforting to your cat. Also, plastic molds to fit your cat. It’s pliable and soft. 

Maybe it even feels like being cuddled. This is something only your cat would know but can’t tell you.

Another reason your cat loves sitting on plastic bags could be the crinkly sound it makes. This is similar to high pitched noises birds, crickets, and other small prey make.

It’s incredible to think cats can detect high pitched squeaks  from a mouse 30 feet away!  So you see, the crinkly noise made as your cat snuggles into the bag triggers her hunting instinct.

This is often why you find cats enjoy playing with crinkle balls or cat tunnels that crinkle. In addition, you may find your cat bites the bag or tries to tear it. 

This is because instinctively she’s tearing the flesh of her prey. All cats have a prey drive no matter what breed.

Does Your Cat Sit On The Laundry?

why cats sit on things-cat sitting on laundry

If you’ve found your kitty sitting on top of a pile of laundry she’s probably finding comfort. That pillow case, or blanket has your scent all over it.

Even freshly laundered items will still retain some of your scent only a cat can detect. This could be something to bear in mind in your absence. 

Leaving an old jumper you’ll never wear again in your cat’s bed can make her feel secure. Warmth and security are very important to a cat 

Why Cats Like Sitting On Electrical Items.

If like me you’ve found a furry body blocking your view of the TV you’ll understand. Whether it’s the Television screen or your laptop screen, colorful images and warmth provide an attractive place to sit.

 I remember years ago as a child our cat used to sit on the radio. She obviously enjoyed the warmth and the radio was quite large!

Always be mindful of cables, especially if you have a young kitten. Just like babies kittens chew everything when teething.

Final Thoughts 

I hope I’ve answered your question “why do cats sit on paper.” As you now know cats are complex animals most of us will never fully understand.

Your cat’s reason for sitting on paper can be varied. From squeezing herself onto that A4 envelope on the desk to snoozing on the newspaper you’re reading.

She may be trying to get your attention, or just enjoying the cozy warmth. She may also enjoy the feeling of security and she’s next to her favorite human!

In addition to paper, cats also like sitting on plastic bags. If you’ve found your kitty sprawled across the grocery bags she’s probably enjoying the scent from food items.

It’s also possible she likes the crinkly sound it makes, and the warmth it gives off. 

There are many other surfaces cats enjoy sitting on including blankets. In addition, electrical items such as TVs and laptops provide warmth and security.

As your cat’s body temperature is higher than yours she’ll seek out warmth wherever she can. Whether that’s a piece of paper or a sunny windowsill, she’ll soak up any heat. 

Cats originate from hot desert regions and that’s why your cat enjoys a toasty 80-90F while you’d be reaching for the nearest fan!

If you’ve enjoyed this post please share. Feel free to share this pin on your “pets” board

Why Cats Sit On Paper pin

Also, if you have any questions or would like to share experiences, leave a comment below.

Wishing you a purrfect day


8 thoughts on “Why Do Cats Sit On Paper?-The Truth About This Odd Behavior”

  1. It’s interesting to read this post and know why cats sit on paper and other warm stuff. I always thought that they sit on paper because paper reminds them of cardboard. Cats love to sit inside cardboard because the carboard gives them warmth, and sitting on paper gives them the same feeling. That’s another assumption. Do you think it makes sense?

    • Hi Matt, yes, definitely! Cats sit in cardboard boxes for the exact same reason they sit on paper. Both materials provide excellent insulation, and keep your cat feeling warm and cosy. Thanks for your input☺

  2. Thanks for another amazing fact about cats. I always just thought my cats were quirky, but it all makes sense when you sit down and think about it.

    Thanks again for sharing…

  3. I really liked this article, and it was interesting to see all the intricacies of the behaviors of cats. My friends have cats and I always play with them. Unfortunately to my deterrent, my skin always breaks out after, I wish I wasn’t allergic.

    • Hi David, glad you liked this article ☺ Sorry to hear you have an allergy though and suffer break outs after playing with your friend’s cats. Thanks for stopping by

  4. Cats are just so interesting!

    They have so many reasons for sitting on papers and other items around the house, and it helps to actually understand that they have reasons for doing so and it is not them being mischievous.

    This way, you won’t always get irritated or annoyed that your cat(s) is blocking your view around the house and lying on laptop while you’re working.

    Thank you for always sharing all these interesting facts and articles on cats. They are fun to read.


    • Hi Femi, glad you enjoyed this post☺ yes, cats are curious creatures and have many reasons for sitting on paper. Their funny ways can be a great source of amusement, even when blocking your view of the TV!


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