My Cat Refuses To Use His Litter Box, Why?

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My Cat Refuses To Use His Litter Box

Cats are very neat animals, they spend time grooming and defecate in quiet places and cover them up. But sometimes our indoor cats develop cleanliness problems and leave their litter boxes to eliminate their needs in somewhat inappropriate places (carpet, sofa...). Why does your cat become so clean? Our answers.

    The cat and cleanliness

    By all accounts, cats are extremely clean animals that spend a good part of their day grooming. Cleanliness is not entirely innate for your cat, it is during the first weeks of life in contact with its mother or another adult cat that your cat will acquire this behavior. By observing its mother, the kitten will understand that it must eliminate somewhere other than where it sleeps for example, it is by mimicry that it will use the litter box. But sometimes this learning does not go well for several reasons, abandonment of the litter, mother not very aware of the education to be given ...

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    Why doesn't my cat use the litter box?

    Using the litter box is almost innate in indoor cats, but it is sometimes necessary to clean your kitten or to give your adult cat a booster session.

    A cat does not become dirty for pleasure or revenge. This problem may be caused by behavioral problems (fear of the litter box, overcrowding, moving...) or pathological disorders (cystitis...).

    Changing the litter box, or the litter itself (you change from clumping litter to vegetable-based litter for example) may not please your cat, who may show discomfort or rather disorientation through uncleanliness. Remember that cats are creatures of habit and that any change in their environment or their life must be done gently. Think about getting him used to it, to make a transition before imposing a change on him.

    An adult cat that becomes unclean may also express it because of pain during urination. The cat then associates its litter box with a place where it hurts; and you can't blame it for not going to a place where it hurts, can you?

    The cat's sensitivity to odours can also cause the litter box to be neglected. Some cats can't bear to enter an already soiled litter box. There is no other choice but to remove the stains after each passage of the cat in the litter box.

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    How do you teach your cat how to keep clean?

    If your kitten has lost its mother, it will have to be replaced for food, but also for education! For housetraining, some kittens are more receptive and understand quite quickly that the elimination area (litter box) is much nicer than the couch to do his business, he can scratch, turn the granules around! For the others, it will be necessary to help them. When you observe it well, you will see that the kitten before eliminating changes its behavior, it scratches the ground, sniffs it and squats: no more a second to lose, put it directly in the litter box. Be careful not to shout, don't argue, your kitten won't understand. Above all, he must not associate the litter box with a place where he is being punished!

    To attract the cat to its litter box, it is possible to clean it with bleach. Its peculiar ammonia odour attracts cats, who tend to try to cover it up when they relieve themselves.

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    The litter box

    For kittens in training, prefer an open tray that is easily accessible for your companion. For adults, a closed top tray can be used - they prefer a little privacy.

    The important thing is that your cat's litter box should be located in a quiet area of the house, where it will not be disturbed during disposal. Therefore, we forget about places near the washing machine, which may cause the cat to run away when it goes into spin mode, we also forget about places that are too far away (attic, garage...).

    The litter box must be large enough so that your cat can turn around inside without difficulty and can scratch the granules without putting everything outside at once.

    A change in a cat's behavior towards its litter box must be synonymous with a consultation with the veterinarian to make sure the problem is at the origin of the problem.

    Also read : 5 Tips To Avoid Cat Scratches On Furniture.

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