What No One is Telling You About the Litter Box

As a pet sitter, I deal with many different types of animals and their many different types of needs. One very popular critter that I sit is the common every day feline – also known as the cat.

There are three types of house cats in the world today: 1. The indoor cat, 2. The outdoor cat and finally, 3. The indoor/outdoor cat. No matter how you feel about the three types of cats and what type of cat you have, all three have one thing in common (and many people don’t want to talk about this) THEY ALL GO TO THE BATHROOM!

Now, most of us don’t have our kitties trained to use the toilet (like you’ve seen on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram) so regular folk have to rely on a litter box.

There are not many people who like litter box duty, but there are ways to make the job more bearable.

Here are some tips to managing the litter box…

  1. No matter what litter you choose, scoop daily – more is better. Cats are very fickle. They do not like to go into a box that smells or is full of nastiness. This will help the odor in your home too.
  2. Have 1 more litter box than you have cats. If you have 1 cat, have two boxes, 2 cats 3 boxes, 3 cats, 4 boxes, etc…And place them on different levels in your home – a cat is less likely to use your pillow if the litter box is on the same floor of your home!
  3. Think outside of the box. If you go to a pet store to buy your litter box, you are going to spend a TON! It doesn’t have to be a “litter box”. Sometimes a simple plastic storage tote works better. They have taller sides and are bigger – cats like to have space and you don’t want to clean urine off the wall.
  4. Avoid the large, giant granular litter. Cats prefer the smaller, finer grain litter. They will be less inclined to void outside the box if they are comfortable going inside the box. Everyone claims to be “track free” – especially the large grain litter, but there is NO SUCH THING! Litter will fall out of the box and will come out on the kitty’s paws. You will need a broom or vacuum.
  5. Don’t forget to clean the box. No, not scoop the litter, clean the box. Some think that scooping the litter and adding more when the box gets low is enough. Cleaning the box itself is also important. Be sure to clean the box with warm soapy water and rinse it thoroughly. The litter doesn’t always absorb all of the liquids and some will settle on the bottom or sides of the box.

It is not necessary to follow the cat to the box every single time he or she eliminates and posting a litter guard is a bit of overkill too. However, having a schedule and sticking to it will help everyone involved and will make living in the same home a much better experience.