When it comes to bathroom habits, cats can be really picky. No one wants to deal with a constant mess at home, which is why having the cat’s litter box nice and clean the whole time becomes essential.
How to choose the right litter box for your cat? How often should you clean it? Is it possible to run into any problems when your cat is using the litter box? We’re answering these questions and many more, right down below.
- 1. How many litter boxes should you get?
- 2. Are covered boxes the best choice?
- 3. What about the self-cleaning boxes?
- 4. How to choose the litter box?
- 5. Is the setup difficult?
- 6. How often should you clean it?
- 7. Do you need to train your cat for using the litter box?
- 8. Any other problems that may occur?
1. How many litter boxes should you get?
The rule of thumb is that you need one litter for every cat in the house, plus one more. This way you’re always sure that every single furry pet has a place to use when it’s duty time.
Using a litter box especially for one cat isn’t possible- cats tend to use any litter box that is free at the moment. However, a cat may refuse a litter box if another cat has been in it.
This is why you should have the litter boxes clean the whole time. You may even need more litter boxes than the number of cats you have. Keep in mind not to place all the litter boxes in just one location. Cats may think of them as just one big box, pushing each other for using it.
2. Are covered boxes the best choice?
Some people like using litter boxes that are covered. Truth be told, this type of litter box does ensure more privacy and reduce the amount of litter that is going to fly out of the box any now and then.
However, this type of litter boxes presents several downsides. You may tend to forget cleaning the litter box regularly (out of sight is out of mind, right?), and end up with a litter box with plenty of odors trapped inside.
A larger cat may find it difficult to turn around and place herself in a covered litter box. Getting out of it may not be very easy either.
On top of everything else, if your cat doesn’t like it, he/she isn’t going to use it. You may have to go through some trial and error until you get it right.
3. What about the self-cleaning boxes?
There are so many models of litter boxes that are easy to clean. As with everything else related to cats, it’s never sure if they’re going to use it or not.
One of the models that is winning fans as we speak is the Luuup Cat Litter box (www.luuup.com). It’s a 3 sifting tray system that provides easy cleaning. Every tray works as a sieve and when any two are stacked together, they form a solid base. As for cleaning, you only need to lift the top tray, whereas the waste gets separated from the clean litter.
There are not many litter boxes similar to Luuup, this is definitely one that stands out from the crowd. Even the price is not so bad. The original selling price is $90 but you can get it for $65 because currently there are many coupon codes that will help you get the price down to $65. Here is one for you – https://www.couponsolver.com/stores/luuup/.
4. How to choose the litter box?
The most common option for litter boxes is the typical clay litter, scooping/clumping litter, crystal-based/silica gel litter and the plant-derived/biodegradable litter.
Most cats like using fine-grained litter, probably because of the softer feel. New scoopable and “clumping” litter comes with finer grains than the typical clay litter. They’re popular because they put odor under control.
High-quality, dust-free clay litters are small-grained and most cats go for them.
No matter the model you go with, once you find it, stick with it. if you’re switching the litters, your cat may end up not using it anymore.
Some cats have been outdoor before and they may prefer dirt. You may keep them away from the houseplants with help from medium-sized rocks placed on the top of the soil in the pots. You may also mix some soil with the regular litter so that they find it more attractive. If no type of commercial litters works for your cat, some sand is going to work as well.
Some people are using air freshener or scented litters for hiding the litter box odors. More often than not, the odors are too strong for the cats. You should place a thin layer of baking soda on the bottom of the box for absorbing the odors, without keeping away the cat.
5. Is the setup difficult?
It’s quite common for people to place the litter box in a less frequented place, for reducing odor and for keeping the cat litter tracked throughout the entire house. However, you shouldn’t place it in the basement next to an appliance or on the cold cement floor- your cat isn’t going to use it at all.
Here are some suggestions to remember about the setup:
- Put it away from the food and water bowls. You should have at least one litter box on every level of your house. if you have more than one cat, you should place several litter boxes in several places so that your cats don’t ambush each other while using the box.
- The litter box has to be in a place that offers some privacy to the cat. It has to be easy to reach to, especially if your cat is a kitten or an elderly cat.
- Don’t place the litter box next to a loud or heat-radiating appliance. Noises make a cat nervous, whereas a heat-radiating appliance is going to increase the litter box smell.
- When you place the litter box in a closet/bathroom the door should be wedged open from both sides the whole time. you don’t want your cat to be locked out or trapped inside. You may also add a pet door or cut a hole in the closet door.
6. How often should you clean it?
You may have to clean the litter box daily. How often you need to replace the litter depends on the number of cats you have, the number of litter boxes and the type of the litter as well.
You should replace the clay litter twice a week, but it depends a lot on your needs. For instance, if you’re cleaning the litter box every day, you may have to change the clumping litter every two or 3 weeks. Change the litter the moment you notice an odor or if it’s wet or clumped.
You need to scrub the box every time you’re changing the litter. Some mild dish detergent is going to work. Too much citrus oils or ammonia may turn a cat off. Not to mention that some cleaning products are toxic to cats in the first place.
7. Do you need to train your cat for using the litter box?
There’s no such thing as “litter training”. You don’t need to teach the cat what he/she has to do with a litter box; instincts are going to do that. However, you need to provide easy access to the litter box and make sure your cat feels safe and taken care of.
You should only show your cat where the litter box is when you move into a new house.
8. Any other problems that may occur?
When a cat isn’t using the litter box but starts to go outside, you should go to the vet. Many medical conditions cause a change in a cat’s litter box habits. If the vet decides that everything is good with your cat in terms of health, you need to deal with a behavior problem. A special situation may occur when you have a declawed cat, which alters their potty behavior. If that’s the case, you can get a good litter for declawed cats, which is usually made of a soft material, especially for enticing the cat back into using the litter box.
Don’t punish nor banish your cat outdoors. The best you can do for your cat is to get in touch with an animal-behavior specialist that can offer the proper solution for the problem.