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Home > Cats > Why Do Cats Hate Aluminum Foil? 4 Potential Reasons

Why Do Cats Hate Aluminum Foil? 4 Potential Reasons

Kitchen foil on a chopping board

If you’re a cat lover, you’ve been a witness to bizarre behavior from time to time. Cats are notorious for staring at blank walls for hours, hearing things we don’t, and even jumping in the air at seemingly nothing on the floor. While it’s all fun to watch, it does leave us wondering why they act the way they do.

Another thing you may have noticed if you have cats in the home is how they act when you bring out the aluminum foil. While aluminum foil seems completely harmless to us, for cats, it can be their arch-nemesis. If we’re honest with ourselves, though, it makes sense. For a cat, aluminum foil has a strange appearance, feel, and sound which is why so many of them hate it.

Let’s take a deeper look at cats and their hatred for our household aluminum foil so you can better understand why your kitty acts the way it does.


The 4 Reasons Why Cats Hate Aluminum Foil

Now, don’t think every cat is the same. You may have cats that aren’t afraid of anything and will pounce on an aluminum foil ball or walk across a sheet like it’s nothing. Then others will run from the room the moment they see it. Here are a few of the reasons cats aren’t fans of foil so you can better understand your kitty’s train of thought.

1. The Sound Aluminum Foil Makes

While we’ve become accustomed to the sounds made by a piece of aluminum foil, your cat isn’t so lucky. However, we aren’t actually used to the sound, we just aren’t hearing it properly. When we crinkle aluminum foil, the true ultrasonic sound it makes is far beyond our range of hearing.

Cats hear far better than we do. It’s on the same frequency as the sound mice use to communicate with one another which helps cats catch them. Cats can hear the ultrasonic sound aluminum foil truly makes and for some reason they simply hate it. While we can’t say for sure why this is, more often than not, your cat is going to leave the vicinity when you pull out the foil to protect its ears.

2. Cats Don’t Like the Reflectiveness of Aluminum Foil

Aluminum foil is shiny and reflective. This may be seen as odd to cats. Some people feel that cats dislike the reflective properties of aluminum foil because they think it resembles water. We all know most cats are fans of anything wet. While this is possible, it isn’t the only reason the reflectiveness of aluminum foil throws them off.

Your cat could be seeing itself reflected in the aluminum foil. While they aren’t familiar with how they look, they are smart enough to know that’s another cat they are seeing. However, that cat doesn’t smell like a cat, which can be unsettling.

A small gray kitten plays with foil and a ball
Image By: Olya Detry, Shutterstock

3. Aluminum Foil Has a Weird Texture Your Cat May Not Like

Cats love crinkle toys, so they should love a ball of aluminum foil, right? Not true. With aluminum foil, there is a big difference when compared to popular crinkle balls you can buy your kitty. Some of the edges are sharper and rough. It even feels weird when it’s laid out smoothly. The feel of aluminum foil in general isn’t a favorite of cats and is why so many people try to use it as a way to deter cats from areas they don’t want them to access.

4. It’s Simply Unnatural

As we’ve already mentioned, cats aren’t fans of things that don’t feel natural to them. Aluminum foil is one of those. Not to mention, your cat doesn’t encounter aluminum foil all that often. That means they are often taken by surprise when they do. Anything that startles your cat or leaves it feeling unsettled is not going to be something they enjoy in the future.

Aluminum Foil
Image By: MonikaP, Pixabay

Using Foil to Deter Your Cat

You’ve most likely seen videos online of people placing aluminum foil on their cabinets and the cat jumping up. The poor kitty is left startled and running for its life. This leads many cat owners to wonder if foil is a good deterrent to keep cats down from places they shouldn’t be.

The thing about this is, yes, it may work the first time or two, but cats are more fearful of aluminum foil due to its weirdness. Once that fear wears off, your cat is most likely going to go on about its business like the aluminum foil isn’t there.

Now, this may not be the case for every cat. Some cats may hold to that fear and rush away each time they encounter it. Just don’t rely on that method. It’s better to teach your cat where it can and cannot go so they learn the proper way.divider-cat

Final Thoughts

While not every cat hates aluminum foil, it’s clear that for most, it is an enemy. The strangeness of aluminum foil is something even we humans can’t deny. Yes, seeing your cat react to aluminum foil may be comical at first, but using something your cat is fearful of isn’t the way to teach your cat. Instead, try to properly train your kitty to stay down. You may also want to wait until your feline friend isn’t in the room before you pull out the roll of aluminum foil in the kitchen. That is if they are one of the cats that freak out at the mere sight and sound of this weird creation.

Featured Image Credit: Happy Stock Photo, Shutterstock

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