Cats are naturally very clean animals and require little maintenance. Litter Boxes are a necessary part of owning a cat (or two!), but did you know that your kitty’s litter box can tell you about how he or she may be feeling?If your cat is refusing to use their box, or are going just outside of it, there can be a variety of reasons for this:
- Scented litter. Cats have very sensitive noses and are easily turned off by scent. If the litter you choose is too fragrant, he or she may not want to use it.
- Dirty litterbox. Scoop their litter at least once or twice a day. As previously mentioned, cats’ noses are extremely sensitive, and if they feel their litter isn’t completely clean, they may not want to use it. Even if you’ve recently scooped and changed the litter, the box itself may need to be properly cleaned.
- Whether the litter box has a lid. Some cats don’t like the feeling of being trapped in such a small space. Try taking the lid off and see if that helps your cat acclimate itself to their box again.
- Litter texture. Some cats dislike the feel of the litter in their paws. If you rescued a cat from the shelter, and he or she had been previously declawed, the usual clay litter may actually be painful for them, so it may be better to use a newspaper- or corn-based litter.
- Urinary problems. If your cat is going out of the litterbox after you’ve switched litters, kitty may have a urinary infection. Male cats have a greater risk of having a urinary blockage due to the longer ureter, so if you see your male cat urinate small drops at a time, it’s best to see the vet.
Checking to make sure kitty’s stools are the right consistency is key to keeping them healthy as well. Too hard, and kitty maybe constipated and need a little pumpkin added into his food (pumpkin is a great stool softener)! Stools that are too soft or liquid can reveal something as simple as an abrupt change of food, to something more severe, such as roundworm or coccidia.
The general rule of thumb is that kitty’s stool should resemble Tootsie Rolls (now that we’ve discouraged you from ever eating a Tootsie Roll again, feel free to thank us at any time)!
Different types of Litter Boxes
There are several different types of litter boxes available. Most grocery stores carry disposable litter boxes with litter already inside them. These are great for emergencies, or for short-term kitty visitors. If you’re looking for a more permanent, cost-effective solution, there are the following types:
Dome-Shaped, for more privacy
Self-Cleaning, for ease and convenience
Regular Pan-Style, a basic, functional litter box
Decorative, meant to look like a Potted Plant
or an End Table
Or, if you’re feeling brave (not to mention patient!), you can always attempt to potty train your kitty! Some cats learn it fast, and there are Toilet Training kits at your local pet store!
At Presidential Pet Care®, we notify you if we notice any changes in your kitty’s potty habits, so if something seems different to us, we’ll be sure to let you know!
Presidential Pet Care® is a small, professional dog walking and pet sitting company serving Northern Virginia. We pride ourselves on providing fun and engaging content alongside our pet care services. If you’re interested in learning more about getting the Presidential Treatment, check us out at www.presidentialpetcare.com.