I am an Affilate!

I hope you enjoy any product or service that I recommend. :) Just so you understand, I may take a share of any sales or other compensation from the links on this page. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Thanks if you use my links, I really appreciate your support.

How To Keep Cat Out of Trash Can: 5 Simple Tips

If you have a cat that keeps destroying your trash can the chances are you are sick of it and looking for some solutions…

Can you keep a cat out of your trash can?

Yes, you can keep a cat out of the trashcan. You will have to either control the cat or the environment. It will be much easier to control the environment though. Such as a heavy-duty trash can with a lockable lid.

Protect your trash can with these:

Description Image My Rating
01. Heavy Duty Locable Trash can (My Best)
Click here for the price on Amazon #Ad
5 stars
02. Trash Can with Pedal
Click here for the price on Amazon #Ad
03. Bitter Lemon Cat Spray
Click here for the price on Amazon #Ad
4 stars

So, now you know. But, why do cats like trash cans so much? what can you do to stop them? Why do they eat the trash? Keep reading for these answers, and much more…

How to keep cats out of a trash can:

How to keep cat out of trash can

A trash can.

In summary, it’s possible, keep your trashcan out of view like putting it under your sink or in the garage. But if that’s not doable, you can get a heavy trashcan with a tight-fitting lid. In the case of keeping the can in the house, make sure the outside is clean and wipe it down regularly.

Here is the detail…

1.  Use a Heavy Duty Trash can with a lockable, firm fitting lid

Click here to see the price, on Amazon #Ad

Consider investing in heavy-duty garbage cans with lockable, tight-fitting lids (Click here to see the reviews, on Amazon #Ad), instead of relying only on garbage bags. You could also secure garbage lids with bungee cords or concrete blocks. If you’re keeping the can outside, you can also use bungee cords to secure it/them next to the building.

2.  Use a trash can with a foot pedal to open

Click here to see the price, on Amazon #Ad

Many foot-operated trashcans have removable inner containers or other mechanisms to secure bags in place. This also prevents the bag from hanging outside the trash can. Add a safety lock for children, this will stop the cat from getting in.

3.  Get rid of food strong smells as much as possible

If you can’t keep kitty out of the garbage, it could be because they’re attracted to the strong smell of food emanating from the trashcan. If you have a lot of food scraps, you can try keeping them in the freezer until it’s time for garbage day. The point is, configure a way to mitigate that attractive smell.

4.  Clean it out regularly

When you remove garbage from containers, spray inside fresh bags and trashcans with ammonia, soap, or bleach. Make sure you wash the can often to keep it free and clean to deter your cat from breaking into it.

5.  Change trash bags often

Stay on top of taking out the trash and replacing it with fresh, clean bags. Don’t let your garbage sit full to the brim with trash and food. Frequent garbage bag changing will reduce the smell of food. At the very least, change them every other day; at the most, two or three times per day.

Why do cats like trash cans?

There are many reasons why cats like trash cans. Sometimes, it’s because you’re gone all day and there isn’t enough food. It could be because your cat was feral and old habits die hard.

Most often though, it’s because they smell something, like chicken or fish, and they want to eat it. Or, they’re curious. If your cat is a box-lover, your can is something to explore and dominate.

Why You Need to Be Proactive

First, understand the power of smell and how it affects cats. Moving the can to another location won’t take care of the problem. Proactive innovation is going to be tantamount here.

Why do cats also rip up the trash can lining?

Your cat may be ripping up the trash can lining because it’s within their reach, an attraction to scent, or plain curiosity. But it could be the liner itself.

Animal fats in the material

Sometimes, manufacturers make liners with animal fats and byproducts, which includes recycled materials. So, the smell of it attracts the cat and they can’t help themselves from ripping it up.

Desire for diversion

Additionally, it could be from a desire for diversion. For some cats, plastic liners and bags move and create a playful surface they want to engage with.

Examine your cat and observe their behavior when they rip up the lining. Also, take note of whether you are home or not when they do it. As for the same reasons as the trashcan,

How can you stop the cat ripping up the bin lining?

To stop your cat from ripping up the bin lining, aside from keeping food scraps out of the can, installing a cat-proof trashcan, or securing the top with something strong, you could try getting a cat repellent spray (Click here to see the reviews, on Amazon #Ad).

The first step in stopping your cat from ripping up garbage bags is to devise a long-term strategy. Most cat caretakers attempt solutions that only work for the moment because the cat figures out a way around it.

In short, you will always be two steps behind your cat and their diabolical plans for trashcan domination. So, you have to be as crafty. The same guidelines apply for blocking cats from garbage cans.

Why do some cats like to sleep in trash cans?

Some cats like to sleep in the trash can because it’s comfy, warm, and cozy. Depending on the material and design of the can, it may also provide a soundproof resting area.

As long as they don’t do it with garbage inside, then there’s nothing to worry about. But if it’s bothersome to you, get a heavy-duty trashcan or one with a tight-fitting lid.

What can I spray on my garbage to keep cats away?

Click here to see the price, on Amazon #Ad

There are pheromone sprays and other things, like bitter lemon (Click here to see the reviews, on Amazon #Ad), apple, lemon, that you can mist over your trashcan and liners.

You may have to experiment with what works best to repel your cat away from the garbage. You can also ask your vet for recommendations based on your cat’s behavior and frequency of destruction.

If you do opt for this, ensure you begin slow to test the waters. Sometimes, a spritz or two will do the trick. But other times, you may have to make a dousing event of it.

Why does my cat eat trash?

Cats often eat trash because of the smell emanating from the can itself. But it could be something more like a nutritional deficiency. Alternatively, it could also be as benign as their curiosity propelling them to dumpster dive. It’s all going to depend on the cat, its frequency (regardless of your efforts),

Why would cats rub their face against the trash can?

When a cat, or any animal for that matter, rubs their face on anything, it usually means they’re marking their territory. It also serves as a way to indicate later on they’ve already explored this area.

Additionally, your smells, and those of others in your home, are likely filling the trashcan too. So your cat could be interpreting it as a community-like area where everyone marks their scent. So, they’re simply adding their smell to the mix to state their position as part of the family and household.

Are adopted cats more likely to go into your trash can?

It’s not that “adopted” cats are more likely to rummage through the garbage, it more depends on whether your cat was previously feral or not. Feral cats, especially ones who have been on the street awhile, will dig around in the garbage can.

The older they are, the more difficult it will be to break them of the habit. Remember, this is how they fed themselves and survived. So, you’re going to have to be diligent and persistent with your efforts to stop them from doing this.  Do not get mad at or punish them for this, it will not glean the results you seek.

Lindsey Browlingdon