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Cat Litter Training: How to Train a Cat to Use a Litter Box

Using a litter box is something that a furry feline learns from a very young age, mostly from the mother.

Using a litter box is something that a furry feline learns from a very young age, mostly from the mother. However, if you bring home a feral cat or a stray fur kiddo or if you rescue a small kitten off the streets and adopt them, you will have to take the responsibility of the mother cat and give them cat litter training. It will take time, but with proper cat training, you don't have to worry about cat pee and poop all over your house. However, there might be times when even a well-trained fur baby might poop or pee around the house, especially when they become old. In such situations, you will have to retrain your old kitty to use the litter box again to do its business.

But how to train a cat to use a litterbox? This article aims to guide you on how to train a cat to use a litter box.

Finding the Perfect Litter Box for Your Cat

Kitty litter training begin with finding the perfect litter box. Here are certain points to keep in mind while finding the perfect litter box for your perfect little friend:

  • The right size of the litter box

    If you have full-size boxes, your small kitty might find them highly intimidating and too big. For kittens, a litter tray measuring 13 inches by 9 inches is ideal. However, when you have adult cats or your cat is growing older, you will need larger-sized litter boxes. Simply put, get a litter box as per the size of your furry munchkin. Ideally, the litter box should be 1.5 times the length of the cat. As the kitten grows, the size of the box increases.

  • Covered or uncovered

    Generally, cats prefer using uncovered litter boxes. Covered boxes give some cats a feeling of being trapped. Again, there are cats which like to excrete within a covered space. You can try giving your furry little friend both options and see what it likes.

  • Number of boxes

    It is recommended that you should have one extra box for cat poop in your house. For instance, if you have three cats, you must have four litter boxes.

Placing Litter Box

Wondering how to potty train a cat? Proper placement of litter boxes is an integral part of how to litter train a kitten. With proper availability and placement, you can encourage your small fur ball to use the litter box instead of pooping and peeing around the house. Here are some important points to consider when deciding on a place for the litterbox:

  • Try avoiding distractions

    The cat litter box that you place for your little feline friend should be easily accessible by them when they need them. Refrain from putting these boxes in corners or closets as cats feel trapped or cornered during peeing and pooping. They also prefer some light around the litter box for easy visibility.

  • Placed in multiple locations

    If you don’t want cat poop and cat pee all over your house, place the cat litter boxes in different areas of the house. When the boxes are spread out, the furry felines find the litter boxes more easily and can use them as needed.

Steps to Litter Train a Kitten

How to litter train a cat or how to train a cat to use litter box is not a very simple task but it isn't all that complicated either if done correctly. Here are some steps to how to litter train a kitten:

  1. Step 1 – Proper placement of the litter box

    Try placing the litter box in a quiet place, which is away from chaos. Do not place the litter box close to the food and water area of your feline friend. Cats do not excrete in the same area where they eat and drink.

  2. Step 2 – Provide enough litter in the box

    Make sure that you cover the bottom of the box with a minimum of 2 inches of litter. Cats cover their excretion after eliminating it and they must have an adequate amount of litter for that. Initially, your furry friend will take some time to get accustomed to the feel and smell of litter before it starts peeing or pooping in the box.

  3. Step 3 – Place the kitty in the box to familiarise it

    Place your furry little feline munchkin in the litter box regularly, particularly after the fur balls have eaten. Kittens usually eliminate right after their meals. Interrupt your cats if you see them poop anywhere else and bring them to the box. Reward them if they do their business inside the litter box.

  4. Step 4 – Make changes and try to make the cat use the litter box

    Even after repeated attempts if you fail to litter train your fur friend, try changing the kind of litter that you are using in the box. You can also experiment by moving the litter box to some other place.

Steps to keep the litter box clean

Now that you know how to litter train a cat, follow these steps to keep the cat litter box clean:

  • Clean the litter every time your kitty poops during training, as having poop in the box might put off the kitty from using the box. Make sure that you add clean litter to maintain a depth of 2-3 inches.
  • When your kitty gets older, scooping the litter box once daily is enough. By this time, the kitty will have learnt to use the litter box.
  • Empty all litter from the box, clean it thoroughly, and then fill it with fresh litter.
  • In case of clumping litter, you need to change them every week.

What should I do if my cat refuses to use the litter box

It is quite a common occurrence when a furry munchkin refuses to use the cat litter box. Then how to train a cat to use toilet? If you are tired of how to teach a cat to use a litter box but your little fur baby is still refusing to get litter-trained, you can try and follow these steps:

  • Make sure that the cat litter box setup is perfect. The box should be easily accessible and placed in a quiet spot without any distractions or disturbances.
  • Try changing the kind of litter in the box or the whole litter box to see if your fur kiddo prefers a different kind of litter or box.
  • Scoop up the poop more often and replace litter frequently.
  • Using pheromone diffusers is often great help as kitties have a feeling of marking their territory.
  • If the problem still doesn’t resolve, get your furry munchkin checked by a veterinarian to rule out problems like urinary tract infections, parasites, or other medical conditions.

FAQs on litter training kittens

What is the fastest way to litter train a cat?

The fastest way to litter-train a cat is to start training it when it is still a baby. Kittens are quick learners and less fussy about their preferences. Use positive reinforcements such as treats and cuddles to train them easily.

How long does it take to train a cat to litter?

Kittens have to be placed in the box many times for several days to get an idea of the litter box. It might take longer to train adult cats. On average, it takes around 4 weeks to train a cat to litter.

How can I train my cat to use the litter box?

  • Keep the litter box in a proper place
  • Put enough litter in the litter
  • Put the kitty in the box so that it gets accustomed to the litter box
  • Try making changes to the litter box if the kitty doesn't use it

Do you have to train a cat to use the litter box?

Yes, a cat needs to be trained to use the litter box. Generally, a kitten learns from its mother to pee and poop in the right place. But you too can train your cat by getting them used to the litter box.

Can you toilet-train a cat?

Yes, it is possible to toilet train your cat. With patience and by following the right methods, you can train your kitten to use the toilet and keep it clean too! But it might take a little longer than litter training.

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