If you own a cat, you already know that these creatures can be picky. After all, they always seem to know what they want. If you struggle to keep your pet happy with your litter box situation, you may need to rethink your current strategy. After all, some cats will outright refuse to use a litter box if he or she does not enjoy the current setup.
Health risks are also a factor in creating a litter box that works for your home. In fact, some pets will hurt themselves by not using their littler box at all because they are uncomfortable. Read on to see how you might be able to change your current litter box situation for the best health and comfort of your cat.
Clean the Litter Box
A litter box requires daily maintenance. Ensure you scoop out the contents of the box at least once per day. The scent of old waste can be incredibly off-putting for your cats. Additionally, waste that sits in the box for a long period of time will also begin to make the entirety of your home smell bad. You might notice that male cats tend to spray more often when the litter box is full too.
Regular scooping still means you will miss some of the dirty litter. Make sure to fight against bad smells by dumping out the litter, washing the box, and adding fresh litter regularly. You may need to replace the entirety of the litter a few times per week, but this schedule can vary depending on the type of litter you use.
Replace the Litter Box
Your litter box requires regular replacement, but many cat owners do not know this. Between your scooper and a cat's sharp claws, the box will acquire small divots, scratches, and grooves that make it more difficult to clean completely. The boxes themselves can give off bad odors that deter your cat from wanting to use the litter box as well.
Choose the Litter Box
It is clear why covered litter boxes appeal to humans. They offer some privacy for your cat and prevent litter from flying out of the box. Unfortunately, odors can become trapped in these boxes much sooner. Plus, they can provide very little space for larger cats to move around in.
Keep in mind that it is ideal to have one litter box per cat in addition to one extra. This is the only way to ensure your pets do not skip using the litter box entirely because it is already being occupied by another cat.
Place the Litter Box
The best place for a litter box is in a well-ventilated space. Odors tend to become more concentrated in small, hidden spaces. The result could be that your cat opts to use something else in place of a littler box. Cats don't want to be trapped in their own waste odors, just as humans don't want to be. Plus, cats prefer some source of light that will help them use the litter box comfortably.
Noise is another factor to consider. Your cat wants to do its business in quiet, so make sure you keep the litter box in a private, quiet space.
Next, keep all litter boxes clear from food and water bowls. Cats can be finicky about having the litter box near the place they dine. Plus, one cat eating could block another cat from getting into the box.
Fill the Litter Box
Cats are picky about the litter you use, so choose wisely. Once you find a litter your cat will use, try to stick with it. If you frequently change litters, your cat may decide he is not comfortable inside the litter box.
You should always call your veterinarian if you notice anything strange. For instance, your cat might not be using the litter box because of another problem, like a urinary tract issue or kidney stones. Getting your cat checked out is the first step to determining if an issue is physical or behavioral. Call us today at Irby-Overton Veterinary Hospital to learn more.