How To Train Your Cat to Use Litter and Litter Boxes
Posted by Samuel Matthews on Feb 21st 2022
Training your cat is important, especially if you’re living in an apartment. Today, you’ll learn what you need when dealing with a new kitten, how to train your cat to use the litter box, and what to do in case… nothing works.
This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-SA
What You Need to Purchase
To get you started, you will need to buy the necessary materials for training your cat. The first purchase you will be looking at is a professional litter box. On top of that, you’ll also need toys and treats. Let’s check the list.
- Two litter boxes. Buying litter and two litter boxes is your first goal. That’s because you’ll need to place them in different parts of the apartment. One of them will go in the kitchen while the other one should be placed wherever the cat spends most of her time during the day. Make sure that the boxes that you purchase are well-designed and structurally performant. You don’t want accidents happening.
- Litter. You should go for the eco-friendly litter since this one is the most widely preferred among cats. However, if your kitty is even more pretentious than that, you might have to change it again.
- Your cat needs toys and treats. She’ll need a bag of dry food and some nice mouse-looking toys to start with. She will play with them whenever she’s bored, so it’s good to keep toys around.
This Photo by Unknown Author is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND
How To Train Your Cat to Use the Litter Box
Your next goal is to train your cat to use the litter box. Check out the next steps to learn how to.
1. Let her sit in it
As soon as you purchase the litter box, show it to her. Let her smell it, sense it, and understand that it’s hers. Examining the box will help her understand that a potentially useful object has arrived. Here’s a friendly tip: don’t move the boxes around. Once you set it in the bathroom/living room, leave it there. Otherwise, you’ll get your cat confused.
2. Sit your cat inside the box after each meal
After feeding your cat breakfast or dinner, sit it inside the litter box. Again, let her sniff around. She will understand that once she finishes eating, the next logical thing to do is use the litter. Another friendly tip: during the day, pay attention to your cat. Whenever she seems restless or sniffs around, place her in her litter box. This will make her understand that the box is where she’s supposed to go.
3. Use the positive reward system
Once she’s gone to the litter box by herself, it’s time to reward her. Here’s the trick: instead of punishing her for using the floor/carpet instead of the litter box, reward her when she’s good. Right after using the litter box, give her a treat and congratulate her for doing the right thing. Animals pick up on our voice frequencies and feel loved when we praise them. Offer your tiny friend a reminder of how proud you are. This will encourage her to pursue that specific behavior again.
4. Don’t punish
As I just mentioned, punishment is not an option. Scolding your cat when accidents happen will instill fear – your cat will start trusting you less; she will try to hide future accidents from you, which makes training more difficult.
How to Maintain a Clean Litter Box
Clean each day. You’ve got to clean the box regularly each day – otherwise, it’ll smell quite bad. You should purchase a litter that controls odor.
Disinfect the box regularly. Besides cleaning, you should also disinfect the box regularly. Don’t use bleach or chemical products, stick with non-harmful cleaning materials.
Disinfect around the box. The accidents, the odor, the litter, these might all spread around the box, so disinfect everywhere to eliminate smell and keep your cat’s litter box squeaky clean.
What to do if your cat won’t use the box?
Evaluate your setup. Make sure that the litter box lives up to your cat’s preferences. Both of the litter boxes should be easily accessible, located in quiet spots, and not hidden. The boxes should not be guarded by other cats/dogs/pets. Check these tips.
Change the type of litter. Not all cats like eco-friendly litter, so check the type of litter you’re buying. Try changing it and see if that’ll make any difference. You could also try scooping more often and replacing the litter more frequently.
Use pheromone diffusers. If the above strategies don’t work, install pheromone diffusers to help your cat relax. They’ll make your cat feel confident by making her think she marked her territory.
His name is Samuel Matthews. He is 33 years old and lives in Manchester. He worked as a journalist for Ninjaessays and wrote his own detective story. He loves to learn something new and meet different people. His hobbies are travel, sports, and drumming.