Potty training is not only a headache for human beings with their kids; it’s also a huge concern for pet owners too. Getting the cat to actually use the litter box is a challenge most cat lovers and cat owners alike have to contend with. For prospective cat owners, having a cat litter box is a must have and is really essential in a home, unless they do not mind having cat’s urine and fecal matter all over the house. It is obviously not something to look forward to after a long day at work, it’s sure not a pretty sight.
The cat owner will need to have a litter box in place for the cat to go and relieve itself. But is the cat potty trained? Well, if not then this is another worry that the cat owner needs to deal with and quickly before things get way out of hand.
Getting the cat to use the litter is no walk in the park but it is not an impossible task either. All the cat owners need to have, apart from the litter box, is a whole lot of patience and a whole lot of paper towels to wipe up all the pee and poop that the kitty will leave behind.
First time cat owners often get excited by the fact that they will be able to bring their kitties home, thinking that everything is automatic and the cat will know where to go. It’s not that simple. Unless the cat was previously potty trained, this is a task the new family will have to work on. There are some cats that will go outside and relieve themselves in the yard; others will just crap in the house. They are different, and do not come with a manual. Here are some tips that can help the cat use the sandbox.
1. Have a litter box ready: Location! Location! Location! The area the cat owner chooses to place the litter box really matters. The designated area firstly needs to be in an area without too much foot traffic. Privacy is important for the cat. In addition, the cat owner does not want the litter box to be in a place where the smell affects the members of the family. It really helps to have the litter box in a quiet area, so that the cat doesn’t get terrified of using it. But also not too private that the owner forgets to change the litter.
2. Introduce the cat to the litter box: Every now and then, place the kitty in the litter. This is to show it where it should go when it wants to poop and pee. It will not get it the first few times. It definitely takes a whole lot of time. The owner needs to keep at it and eventually the cat will get it right. The kitty will eventually get accustomed to the smell of the litter and know where to go when it needs to relieve itself.
3. Ensure the litter is cat friendly: The owner needs to have a cat litter box with material that the cat will be comfortable to go in. Cats love dirt, sand, even clay clumps. It helps if the litter box has any of these materials in it. The cat will really enjoy kicking the dirt with its feet to cover up its excrement, rather than going on your floor or carpet. If you have a yard, then you can get dirt from your backyard. If not, then you can purchase kitty litter; it is available in most stores.
4. Size matters: The size of the litter box really matters. If it is way too small, then the cat will not feel at home. Kittens usually come home when they are little and the owner’s instinct would be to get a small box. A larger box means the owner does not have to replace it as the cat grows up. The owner should think long-term.
5. Practice and repeat: This is a process and not a one day event; the cat will definitely make some errors and may forget to use the litter. The cat owner needs to remain composed and try and praise the cat when it goes into the litter, and remind the cat when it seems to forget that it is supposed to go into the litter box.
The owner should refrain from shouting, but instead try and let the cat sniff its poop or pee then place it gently in its litter box. This will remind the cat that he should pee and poop in the litter box. The owner should not shout or hit the cat ever, but even more-so when it is in the litter box – it will only discourage him from using the litter box.
6. Clean out the litter box: Cats are generally clean animals, and they do love to be pampered. In the event that the owner does not have a litter box, or the litter box that has been provided for them is dirty, then the cat will shy away from using the box. Cats need to be able to relieve themselves in a clean environment. The cat owner should make it a daily habit to clean out the litter.
7. One litter box is never enough: The cat owner should try and have as many litter boxes in the house as possible. This will help the cat learn much faster as opposed to having just one litter box in the entire household. Cats are quick learners and if aided well, then they can be cooperative too. As a cat owner, you will have less of a headache when it comes to cleaning out the litter boxes because you have several litter boxes in the house.
Potty training cats can be draining but once they get the hang of it, then it’s a walk in the park. Happy training!