• Post author:
  • Post category:Cats
  • Post last modified:August 21, 2023
  • Reading time:13 mins read

Why do cats like hair ties? (Is it safe for cats?)

One of the many annoying habits of your cute little cat is chewing on your hair tie. Give them a toy, and they will leave it aside and choose to chew on your hair tie. 

What is it about cats and hair ties? In other words, why do cats like hair ties?

This is what we shall read on to see. And till then, put away those new hair ties that you got yourself till we learn how to deal with it.

Why Do Cats Like Hair Ties?

Why do cats like hair ties?
This black and white cat is playing with hair ties.

We know that you are upset by now, and that is how you landed on a page like this. You are looking for answers so you can know how better to handle this issue that seems to be bothering you.

But before you go on to that, let us give you an understanding of why do cats like hair ties so much so that you are reassured too. 

#1. Cats are curious beings.

Cats like finding things that do not belong to them, and of these, one of the most common and easy to reach is hair ties that their owners often leave around the place. 

In other words, cats are highly inquisitive and want to know more about things they see around them, as this shapes the way they see the world around them.

#2. Cats like string-like objects.

Cats like things that bounce, and objects like these never fail to amuse them. They love the way these objects wiggle and move as they play with them. 

Moreover, such objects bring out their predatory instincts. As they bounce, they are hard to find, which makes the cat go hunting each time he throws them up in the air. In other words, strings give them a lot of reasons to run around and play all day. 

#3. They need entertainment. 

Why do cats like hair ties? 
There's a cat standing cross on the couch.

Due to their hunting instinct, cats are always in need of entertainment. Hair ties give them much-needed entertainment and excitement when their owners are too busy to play with them.

In other words, the hair tie serves as another new playmate around them that they have grown to love chasing around when their owners are too busy to play with them.

Must Read: Why Do Cats Like Butt Pats?

#4. They like the way it looks.

Studies show that the eyes of a cat are often attracted to objects that are shiny and bright, be it a coin, keychain, ribbon, or hair tie. 

Most hair ties are shiny and bright, and this makes them very attractive to cats, who are, in a way, like babies who like things that are shiny and bright. This is more so when they are bored and want something that is pleasing to their eyesight. 

#5. The smell of it.

Cats, like dogs, also have a fairly good sense of smell. And again, just like all of us, there are some smells that they like and that attract them.

This can include anything from food, flowers, and even certain scents, and so chances are, a lot of new hair ties come with an interesting smell that attracts a cat and makes him want to leave aside the toy and play with the hair tie instead. 

#6. Because It Smells Of You

Cats, like dogs and most other animals, are known to develop a strong bond with their caretakers and miss them in their absence.

They love their owners, and chances are that a hair tie a cat owner is wearing at all times has grown to smell of them, making the cat want to play with it all day long, to make up for his absence. 

#7. They Like the Texture

Why do cats like hair ties? This black and white cat is playing with hair ties.

Most hair ties are not just bright and shiny but silky and smooth too, making them very interesting to cats who love to explore different textures with their paws, and the hair tie gives them something new to experiment with too. 

Apart from that, the smooth and silky texture that most hair ties come with feels good on a cat’s sensitive whiskers, making him want to chew on it too. 

Is it safe for cats to play with hair ties?

No, it is not safe for a cat to play with hair ties because cats are playful beings and could easily swallow these small things. And this is not a good thing. Ingestion of a hair tie is known to cause a number of injuries and, in certain cases, even be dead. So, no, it is not safe for cats to play with hair ties. 

How do I know if my cat ate a hair tie?

Cats are loud beings and hence will show some signs of irritation. Here are some signs that your cat may have eaten a hair tie:

  • Vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Abdominal pain or discomfort
  • Constipation or diarrhea
  • Straining to defecate

In such a case, one needs to make sure that the cat gets the right first aid and emergency treatment immediately.  

Recommended Reading: Why do cats like the pspsps sound?

Can a cat die from eating a hair tie?

Yes, as seen above, the ingestion of a hair tie can be deadly. All hair ties come with elastic that could cut into a cat’s fragile intestines. 

Apart from this, cats can also choke on the hair tie they are chewing. If a hair tie gets ingested, it can cause an intestinal blockage, which can be life-threatening and requires immediate veterinary attention.

It is for these reasons that cats are to be discouraged from this habit and made to understand that the hair tie that they found is not for chewing. 

What to do if my cat ate a hair tie?

One of the first things to do on suspecting that a cat has eaten a hair tie is to open its mouth and see if there is any chance of him having choked on it. 

If so, one must check to see if the hair tie can be pulled out safely and gently.

If not, rush to the vet or any such place of emergency. Here, the vet will perform the right amount of tests to see where the hair tie is and what can be done about it. 

To be on the safer side, one must always reach out at this time of emergency and not try to get this problem solved by himself as this could worsen everything. 

Hair tie alternative for cats: Cat-friendly solution!

Cats love hair ties, and saying no to him each time he reaches out for one is going to be difficult, but here are some cat toys similar to hair ties that one could use to make it easy. 

  • Balls – This one was obvious, but just like children, cats like balls too. If a cat is choosing a hair tie over a ball, then the chances are that the cat owner is not choosing it. 
  • Teasing Wands – Teasing wands, like hair ties, is bouncy, springy, and fun like hair ties. These too, can easily be available online for a cat owner to buy. 
  • Stuffed Toys – Another one that cats, like humans, like. Stuffed toys represent other animals and give the cat the impression that he has another playmate in the house, which could be a good way to distract him from the hair tie. 

Final thoughts on (Why do cats like hair ties?)

Why do cats like hair ties? We got our answer now. Are hair ties safe? We got our answer to that too.

However, it’s important to remember that hair ties can be hazardous to a cat’s health, so it’s best to keep them out of reach.

And finally, we saw the things that we could replace this object with and the toys we could instead buy for him. So, here’s hoping for a healthy, happy, and playful cat with a set of new cat-friendly toys. 


Hey there, pet lovers! I'm Pratik, a lifelong animal lover, and pet care expert. My passion for animals began at a young age and has only grown stronger over the years. Through my blog, I hope to share my knowledge and expertise with other pet owners and provide them with valuable information on pets.