Why Do Cats Like To Sit On Paper

Why Do Cats Like to Sit on Paper?

As a cat owner or enthusiast, you may have noticed your feline friend’s fascination with paper. Whether it’s a newspaper, cardboard box, or a crumpled piece of paper, cats seem to have an inexplicable attraction to these objects. But have you ever wondered why? In this article, we’ll explore the reasons behind this behavior and shed some light on the topic.

The Attraction of Paper

Cats' love of attention and playtime can lead them to seek out paper as a tool for interaction and stimulation.
Cats’ love of attention and playtime can lead them to seek out paper as a tool for interaction and stimulation.

One of the main reasons why cats like to sit on paper is the texture and smell. Paper has a unique texture that allows cats to grip and scratch, which can be satisfying for them. Additionally, the smell of paper can be intriguing to cats, especially if it has been previously used or has ink on it.

Another reason why cats like paper is the crinkling sound it makes. When a cat sits or plays with paper, it creates a crinkling noise that can be entertaining for them. This sound can also mimic the sound of prey, which can pique their hunting instincts.

Lastly, paper can be warm and comfortable for cats to sit on. The texture and thickness of paper can provide a cozy spot for them to rest, especially if it’s in a sunny or warm area. Overall, the attraction of paper for cats can be attributed to these sensory experiences.

Instinctual Behavior

Cats have natural instincts that drive their behavior, and sitting on paper is no exception. One of these instincts is their desire to seek out small, enclosed spaces. This behavior can be traced back to their wild ancestors who needed to hide and protect themselves from predators.

Paper can provide a small, enclosed space for cats to sit in, which can make them feel secure and protected. In addition, cats are territorial animals and may view the paper as their own personal space. By sitting on the paper, they are marking it with their scent and claiming it as their own. These instincts are deeply ingrained in cats and can explain their attraction to paper.

Instinctual Behavior (Continued)

In addition to seeking out small, enclosed spaces, cats also have a natural desire for security and protection. This behavior can manifest in various ways, such as hiding in small spaces or seeking out high places to observe their surroundings. Sitting on paper can provide a sense of security for cats, as it can shield them from potential threats or offer a cozy spot for them to relax.

Territorial behavior is another instinct that drives cats to sit on paper. As mentioned earlier, by sitting on the paper, they are marking it with their scent, which can signal to other cats that this space is theirs. This behavior is especially prevalent in multi-cat households, where cats may compete for resources and space.

Attention Seeking

Cats are known for their love of attention and interaction, and sitting on paper can be a tool for attention seeking. By sitting on the paper, cats may be trying to gain their owner’s attention, especially if they are seeking playtime or affection. This behavior can be reinforced if the owner responds positively to the cat’s actions, such as engaging in play or petting.

In addition, paper can be associated with playtime for cats. Many cat toys are made of paper or cardboard, and cats may view sitting on paper as a precursor to play. This behavior can be encouraged by providing appropriate toys and playtime for cats, which can satisfy their natural hunting instincts and provide mental stimulation.

Overall, cats’ attraction to paper can be attributed to a combination of instinctual behavior, sensory experiences, and attention seeking. While it may seem like a strange behavior to humans, for cats, sitting on paper can provide a sense of security, comfort, and playfulness.

Environmental Factors

The environment a cat lives in can also impact their behavior, including their attraction to paper. Cats that live in stressful or confined environments may seek out paper as a coping mechanism. This behavior can be a sign of stress, anxiety, or boredom and should be addressed by providing appropriate outlets for their behavior.

One way to provide appropriate outlets for paper-seeking behavior is to offer alternative items for cats to scratch, play with, and sit on. This can include scratching posts, cat trees, and soft blankets. Additionally, providing ample playtime and attention can help reduce stress and anxiety in cats and redirect their energy towards positive activities.


In conclusion, cats’ attraction to paper can be attributed to a combination of sensory experiences, instinctual behavior, and environmental factors. Paper’s texture, smell, and sound can be appealing to cats, and its small size can provide a sense of security and territoriality. However, paper-seeking behavior can also be a sign of stress, anxiety, or boredom, and cat owners should provide appropriate outlets for this behavior.

If your cat has a fascination with paper, consider providing alternative items for them to play with and sit on, and ensure they have ample playtime and attention. By understanding and addressing their behavior, you can help ensure your cat’s health and happiness.