Kitten is obsessed with Kleenex

jellycatfish

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When I got my kitten about a month ago, it was in a very-intense-hay-fever week.
Being allergic to pretty much every type of pollen, I had to blow my nose a lot... and after 2-3 days, the kitten associated the sound of "blowing my nose" with the gesture of "throwing (I literally throw it) the used tissue in the trash can 2 feet away from my bed situated "conveniently" close to my bedside table, a.k.a. the first days I had him I had to keep him from jumping IN my trash can...
He had his little kleenex box obsession, too. He likes to pull out the tissue paper and put his paws in it for fun. I can deal with him playing with the kleenex box and try to catch my used tissue while in mid-air (I now keep the trash can closer to the bed so I just drop the tissue instead of throwing it).
But lately he has become a tissue paper thief... meaning, he stands on 2 legs, grab a tissue in his mouth and plays with it; which is kind of yucky, when you think about it. He has also learned that by putting his weight on his front legs, he can make the trash can fall on its side and he loves to dive in the used tissue paper.
Even when I put heavier stuff at the bottom (I tried it twice), he only "steals" the tissue on top of the garbage.
Since the day I saw him take a kleenex from the bin, the only thing I put in my garbage bin in my room is used kleenex and I have to "hide the trash can" by putting it somewhere way too high for him (or myself, actually) to reach easily or to put it in another room with the door closed.

When I was younger, my family dog used to do this because he liked to "taste" the inside of the tissue paper. My father once put a tiny (very very tiny) drop of Tabasco sauce in one of the tissue and my dog pretty much stopped after that. I can't do this with my kitten though since he only sees the tissue paper as a toy...

Have you been in this situation before? Any ideas on how I can stop him from doing this? :/
 

Ms. Freya

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We ran into this with our Random - he loved stealing tissue from the bathroom garbage basket. Honestly, the only way we got him to stop was to get a garbage bin with a locking lid, so he couldn't get into it and we hope he'll get distracted by something else. He still steals the occasional one that's left on a table or that, but the lid seems to have foiled the worst of his efforts. 
 
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jellycatfish

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I would have to change every garbage basket in my apartment :(.. like 4-5 of them.
 

losna

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Sinbad does this. We had to change our garbage cans to have locking lids as well, and some of them have to have weights put on top to keep them closed. HE goes fishing through garbage cans for trash - or as he would say, treasure hunting for super toys. 
 

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Kittens are like that. They're "programmed" to seek and hunt things and used tissue is the right size (and maybe the right fluffiness too). Most cats outgrow that phase at some point but it can take as long as a year or two. What you can do for now is secure the bins as suggested and make sure the kittens has plenty of alternatives. 

These articles have some great tips about providing other forms of entertainment for indoors kitties. Hopefully with plenty of other stimuli, used kleenex will become less desirable. 

 [article="22426"]Beating Boredom What Indoor Cat Owners Need To Know​[/article]  

 [article="32656"]Playing With Your Cat 10 Things You Need To Know​[/article]  
 

skelekittycat

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My cats absolutely love tissues. I think it's how soft they are and the fact that they tear easily - which will definitely appeal to their hunter/killer instinct. Easy prey!

Then again, they'll knock all the bins in the house over even if there's nothing in it. They're in their "terrible twos" phase at the moment. They've also discovered the toilet roll!
 
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jellycatfish

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Kittens are like that. They're "programmed" to seek and hunt things and used tissue is the right size (and maybe the right fluffiness too). Most cats outgrow that phase at some point but it can take as long as a year or two. What you can do for now is secure the bins as suggested and make sure the kittens has plenty of alternatives. 

These articles have some great tips about providing other forms of entertainment for indoors kitties. Hopefully with plenty of other stimuli, used kleenex will become less desirable. 
 [article="22426"]​[/article] 

 [article="32656"]​[/article] 
Thanks for the links!
It's funny one of the link mentions the DaBird toy; I ordered the two types (mouse and feathers) 2 hours ago on Amazon. We should receive them by Wednesday... Happy ripped through his fishing pole toy in a month ; since the inside of the little ball is made of styrofoam, I don't want him to munch on it. My boyfriend tried to fix it because it's our kitten's absolutely favorite toy, but it's pretty much falling apart... I can't wait to receive the DaBird, I heard good things about it.
He has lots and lots of toys (and he loves to play with crumpled receipts balls!) but it's hard to play with him without the fishing pole.
He has not stolen any tissue since 2 days, but I'll change the bins anyway - especially the one in our bathroom. Yesterday we had a "let's take out the trash" impulse and my boyfriend left the bathroom's garbage bin on its side in our room... and Happy had his very first "If I Fits, I Sits!" moment so I'm going to leave it out for him to play with.

For now I'm so glad he hasn't found out about the toilet paper roll yet! Hahaha.
 

losna

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For now I'm so glad he hasn't found out about the toilet paper roll yet! Hahaha.
How fortunate you are!! We have to keep our extra toilet paper locked away in the basement, and the rolls in the bathroom up on a shelf rather than on the roller because Sinbad loves  it. He has figured out how to open all the cabinets and closets and turns any toilet paper he finds into mountains of confetti.
 
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jellycatfish

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Oh boy! Well, I'm pretty sure Happy will find out about it eventually - but him opening the cabinets doors sounds like a nightmare!

He has figured out how to open the sliding doors of the closets in our apartment though; we used to hide everything we didn't want him to touch in there but... yeah. Let's say the first time I caught him hanging from *i insist on the from* my brand new jacket, I knew the peaceful days of "put it in the closets" were gone forever.
The one things he loves to climb is our living room curtains. Our curtains were not that expensive and I don't realty like them so I don't care. Problem is, our ceiling is 12 feet high (it sounds great but it's SO inconvenient!) and our windows are super tall... so when kitty climbs to the top, he's pretty much 10-11 feet off the ground. The first time he when to the top I was (obviously T_T ) alone in the apartment and I'm short (5 feet 1 inch) so let's say I panicked a little bit when he was meowing "MOMMY HELP ME!"
He ended up slowly going down with me ready to catch him and as soon as he was in my reach i hugged him really tight! A little scary moment for the two of us... he then proceeded to climb half the curtains and go down. I'm glad he understood how to get down by himself, and we always leave big litter boxes under the window so he can land on them.
I don't like him doing it... but I can't really confine him in our room all the time (when we leave the apartment he's always in our room, safe and secure).
 

losna

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Yeah, Sinbad is a clever little guy. We also have to put the Qtips on a high shelf, because he figured out that he can open drawers in the bathroom by opening the cabinet, climbing in, and pushing the drawer from the bottom. Then he pillages. The only things we can keep in the bathroom drawers now are things like toothpaste and soap, combs and brushes, that he doesn't find interesting.

Thankfully neither he nor Tempest are curtain or screen climbers. That sounds terrifying. Oddly Sinbad leaves the kitchen counters alone as well. 
 
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jellycatfish

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Oddly Sinbad leaves the kitchen counters alone as well. 
I was just about to reply to you "Happy is curious about the kitchen counter and climbs the hand towel right under the sink but he has not tried to climb on the counter yet".....
And then I heard plates clatter in my kitchen. It's my boyfriend's turn to do the dishes and was supposed to finish them tonight when he came back from work. My heart skipped a beat and I ran to the kitchen, and there he was, my 3 months old kitten with a surprised look on his face "why are you running?" and me saying, No! There was our biggest kitchen knife 10cm close to his front paw when he was on the counter. I wanted to take him but he just jumped on the ground (not touching the knife, thank God) and sat down to look at me. I think he knows I was terrified, be sat still while I was trying to calm down. It's been 10minutes now and I took him back to my room, he's looking at birds through our window.

I've learned my lesson today: 1) no dishes left on the counter anymore if I'm letting Happy out in the apartment and 2) he can play with all the tissue on Earth, or climb my jackets in the closets, munch on my shoes, I don't care, as long as he doesn't get back on that kitchen counter.
 

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I think either they are like that or they are not, and it isn't necessarily a kitten thing! My Oscar is over a year old now and I have to turn all the kleenex boxes upside down so he doesn't see that kleenex waving in the breeze, taunting him. He also loves tearing up toilet paper and paper towels. His brother Oliver isn't so bad, he'll only tear up something if his brother already started the job, and we hadn't seen it yet. I can't tell you how many brand new packages of toilet paper or paper towels we've had (and we buy in bulk from Amazon) I've found absolutely shredded.

But yes, he definitely favors Kleenex, because it's already open I'm guessing. He just likes to pull them out, one at a time. Has the greatest time with that. And then once all of them are out (if I don't catch him before that - he's done it right next to me many times without my noticing!) he has a ball shredding them on the floor.
 

skelekittycat

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Oh boy! Well, I'm pretty sure Happy will find out about it eventually - but him opening the cabinets doors sounds like a nightmare!

He has figured out how to open the sliding doors of the closets in our apartment though; we used to hide everything we didn't want him to touch in there but... yeah. Let's say the first time I caught him hanging from *i insist on the from* my brand new jacket, I knew the peaceful days of "put it in the closets" were gone forever.
The one things he loves to climb is our living room curtains. Our curtains were not that expensive and I don't realty like them so I don't care. Problem is, our ceiling is 12 feet high (it sounds great but it's SO inconvenient!) and our windows are super tall... so when kitty climbs to the top, he's pretty much 10-11 feet off the ground. The first time he when to the top I was (obviously T_T ) alone in the apartment and I'm short (5 feet 1 inch) so let's say I panicked a little bit when he was meowing "MOMMY HELP ME!"
He ended up slowly going down with me ready to catch him and as soon as he was in my reach i hugged him really tight! A little scary moment for the two of us... he then proceeded to climb half the curtains and go down. I'm glad he understood how to get down by himself, and we always leave big litter boxes under the window so he can land on them.
I don't like him doing it... but I can't really confine him in our room all the time (when we leave the apartment he's always in our room, safe and secure).
Found one of our boys the other night, literally swinging by his front paws from the curtain rail in the bathroom. He just looked at me as if to say "What's up mum?" and then gracefully dropped into the bath.

He was up there again about 5 minutes later. We've learned that he can get up and down safely at the expense of our shower curtain. Thankfully it's an old one so I don't care.
 
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