Litter Box 101

Litter Box 101

One of the most important aspects of bringing a new cat home is making sure the litter box is comfortable and appealing. Otherwise, your feline friend may choose a more exciting area of your home to take care of business. Here’s how to ensure your fur-ever friend finds the litter box accommodating right from the start!

 

What Makes a Perfect Litter Box?

Choose a litter box that is at least 1.5 times as long as your cat. You can always get a large plastic tote or an under-bed storage bin if you can’t find the right size. Make sure you skip the lid. Covered boxes tend to concentrate odors, and some cats feel cramped and trapped. You may want to stay away from the fancy automatic ones as they can activate and startle your kitty while taking care of business. Consider your cat’s unique needs when choosing the litter box. For example, an older cat will find it easier to climb into a low-sided box.

 

How Many Litter Boxes Do You Need?

Make sure to have one litter box for every cat in your household, plus an extra one. So if you have two cats, you will need three litter boxes. If you live in a multi-level home, you’ll need to make sure there’s one on each floor.

 

Where Should You Place the Litter Boxes?

Cats generally feel safer using litter boxes with a good view of their environment and impending dangers. Make sure you choose a quiet and private location, away from loud machinery such as washers or dryers with their unpredictable sounds, and stay away from high household traffic areas. Remember to keep the litter boxes away from your cat’s food and water.

 

What Type of Litter Should You Use?

Cats are unique, with unique preferences. However, most felines prefer a soft, unscented, or minimally scented litter option. Make sure you place between three and four inches of scoopable litter and add more as you scoop to maintain a constant depth.

 

How Often Should You Scoop?

Cats are incredibly clean animals who have no more desire to use a dirty litter box than you using a dirty bathroom. Scooping every day helps control odors and keeps your feline friend comfortable.

 

How Often Should You Clean a Litter Box?

We recommend dumping all the litter and cleaning out the litter box with mild dish soap about every two weeks. Because cats scratch when they use the litter, odors will eventually seep into the plastic, and you won’t be able to get rid of them. Make sure to replace the litter box if it retains an odor even after cleaning it or if it is excessively scratched.

 

Monitoring Your Cat

Changes in your cat’s litter box habits may indicate that something is wrong. If you notice anything out of the ordinary or if your cat begins to eliminate outside of the box, make sure to let your trusted team at All About Cats Veterinary Hospital know. We will evaluate your cat’s condition and rule out any problems.

 

Need More Tips?

Our experienced and cat-friendly team at All About Cats Veterinary Hospital in the Kirkland area is happy to provide you with tips to make sure your kitty is comfortable using the litter box. We are here for you and your feline friend every step of the way!

 

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RICHARD LESTER, DVM

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6501 132nd Ave NE
Kirkland, WA 98033

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