Solving Litter Box Problems
problems you may find that your cat might have an aversion to the litter box if he has decided that the litter box is an unpleasant place if:
• The box is not clean enough.
What to do – Cats are very clean animals and they do not like a dirty, stinky litter box. Cats have a very keen sense of smell and are offended by foul litter boxes. Keep the litter box extremely clean, scoop at least once a day. You can also try using a different type of litter in a new litter box. If you have multiple cats, provide more litter boxes in different locations. This was the problem that I especially had with my siamese, in solving litter box problems with her I had to get multiple litterboxes and keep them very clean! Any sign of feces in a box and she would eliminate outside the box.
• Due to medical problems he has experienced painful urination or defecation.
What to do– It is common for cats to urinate outside the box if they have a medical problem. This seems to be more common in male cats. A urinary tract infection makes urination very painful and they may associate the pain with the litter box and avoid it. If you notice this type of problem, than you need to check with your veterinarian. Cats don’t always act sick when they are.
• Your cat may not like a covered litter box.
What to do - Though covered litter boxes are very popular because they cut down on tracking or kicking litter outside the box, many cats do not like covered litter boxes, especially ones that have a swinging door. The cat may feel too confined or trapped. I had a Siamese that refused to use a covered litter box. She would stand on the sides of the litter box to eliminate, she did not like standing in the litter. In a covered litter box she would have to touch her dainty paws in the litter, and was very unhappy. I have a friend whose cat relieved himself outside of his covered litter box. The litter box had a swinging door to its entrance, after removing the door, he was fine about using his covered litter box.
• Your cat may have been ambushed while using the litter box by another cat, child, or dog. My youngest cat use to ambush the other cats as they were leaving the litter box.
What to do - In solving
problems make sure that your kitty has more than one exit from the litter box. This could be more of a problem in a covered litter box with only one exit.
• Your cat has been startled by a loud noise while using the litter box.
What to do - Cats can be very startled by loud noises. Make sure that the litter box is in a location that is quiet and peaceful, away from loud noises like a furnace or a washer and dryer.
• Your cat associates the litter box with punishment. For example, punishing your kitty for eliminating outside the litter box and then you placed him in the box.
What to do – Do not punish your cat. Cats do not understand punishment, this will only make them anxious around you and afraid to eliminate in your presence. Punishing your cat will cause him to have an aversion to the litter box. Do nothing but clean up the mess.
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