Solving Litter Box Issues: How To
Do you have a problem cat that just doesn't like to use the litter box? What you should know is cats are very sensitive, and finicky. They get easily upset by the smallest changes in the home. So, before you start thinking about parting with your cat, please read on.
First Things First.
If you have a cat that is refusing to use the litter box, please place your cat in a carrier and bring it to the vet ASAP. There are several reasons why your beloved cat could be seeking other locations to relieve itself. However, It could be a simple fix by taking your feline to the vet.
If a cat feels any discomfort while using the litter box, either due to: Urinary tract infections, kidney failure, diabetes, or even constipation, often times your cat will associate that pain with the litter box. It won't take long for them to search for a new location to go.
Things To Consider: Litter Boxes
Are you keeping the litter box clean? Cats are meticulously clean! They won't tolerate a dirty litter box. You should be scooping your litter box daily, and replacing your litter roughly once a week. Depending on how many felines you have. Also, I suggest replacing the litter pan about once every 6 months, as smells get locked in.
How many litter boxes do you have? There's many rules of thumb you could go by. I myself prefer I have one litter box per cat, plus one. Doing this will help with any territorial issues. Now, also take a look at your home. If you have a larger home, it's important that you place a litter box at each end of your home. If you have multiple stories, place a box on each floor. You're cat shouldn't have to hold their urine (and they probably wont) until they can find a litter box 2 stories up, and to the end of the hall.
Is your litter box, the right litter box? Look at the size of your cat. Are the sides to high for your little kitten to jump over? Do you have a kitten size litter box, for your 24 pound overweight cat? These are all things to consider when shopping for a litter box.
Don't forget about privacy! Do you want to use a toilet that is sitting in the middle of a high traffic area? In most cases, probably not. Place the litter box in a quiet spot, that does not have a lot of traffic. Your cat will start seeking other locations to go, if the cat keeps getting interrupted every time it tries to use its designated spot. If you are lacking in private locations, try getting a litter box that has a flap, or a dome over it.
Has your cat been recently declawed? Again, this goes in hand with pain while using the litter box. You could try using shredded newspaper until your cats paws are fully healed.
Is your cat spayed or neutered? You may be mistaking your cats "spray" for urine. Once you fix them, it should reduce his litter box issues. Unless of course your cat is an older one. At that point, It may just be habit by now.
Is your cat experiencing stress? Think long and hard. Cat's get stressed out very easily. Have you changed the brand of litter? The location of the litter box? Do you have a new pet? New baby or adult in the house? Even different activity around the house can stress out your feline. If you are about to make any changes for your cat, do it gradually! Move one thing at a time. If your store is out of your litter, get something as close as possible to your brand.
When It's To Late: Clean-up
No matter what you do to try prevent litter box issues, eventually an accident is going to happen. In my own experience the best product I've been able to find is..
Natures Miracle. It is just that, a Miracle! It works by breaking down that stubborn cat urine and feces. Completely removing all smell. They have many different kinds, Including a laundry booster, carpet shampoo, even a spray that has natural repellant in it, to keep it from happening again. Something to remember is: it's very important that you let the product get down to the padding under the carpet. Once the smell is completely removed your cat should no longer be able to pick up the smell, and re-soil the area.
If this has been happening for quite some time, it is now probably just a habit for your cat. Try moving the litter box in that area. After about a week, start moving the litter box a little bit every day back to its original spot. Something else you can try is placing its food dish there. As cat's do not urinate by their food.
Something else you could try. A product I love and has worked wonders for me. Is calming aids. They come in many different forms, but my personal favorite is the Sentry Cat Calming Collar. I have tried the treats, the plug in pheromones, stuff you put in their water, sprays. The collar seems to be the most effective for my 2 cats. The box says they work for about a month, but I can get by for about 2 months. Another added plus: The collar smells really good!
Some other methods of discouraging kitty from returning to any problem spots: Ultrasonic devices that emit an annoying noise that humans can't hear. As mentioned before, Spray-on repellents that irritate their nose. They also make mats that give your cat a little jolt if they step on it. Which I myself am against..but often times are the most effective. You can even try Mothballs, but that also means you must smell them also. Lastly, you can try placing tinfoil on the area. This does not work for me, because my cat loves tinfoil, as well as bags. Usually cats don't like how the foil feels on their paws. So try it out, is your cat just as weird as mine?