Tips & tricks

In collaboration with Cat Educator, Intersand®’s cat experts would like to offer a few tips and tricks for new “parents” of cats, cat lovers and anyone who’s considering a feline addition to the family.

My cat doesn’t go in his litter box; what should I do?

Every year, thousands of cats are abandoned because of a lack of litter hygiene. There are various factors that could explain why your cat refuses to go in the litter box, and the problem can often be solved very easily. The most likely reasons are the odour (the litter box is very dirty or has a very strong or unpleasant scent) or simply the fact that you’re using a new litter which your cat is not used to. Also, a non-castrated male might tend to secure its territory by urinating everywhere.

No matter what; it is a serious situation that needs to be fixed right away! It could just be a whim but it might also be a serious physical problem. Ask your veterinarian; he/she should be able to help you. Before calling your vet however, just check for a few things that will help him/her with a diagnosis:

Is the litter box clean?
Many cats refuse to do their business in a litter box that is already dirty. Remove the wastes at least daily, but for some cats this should be done twice a day.

Does the box smell?
Urine tending to burn the plastic, maybe it is time to invest in a new box… To prevent urine from touching the bottom of the box, make sure that the litter is around 7.5 cm (3 inches) deep. Also, clumping cat litter will better control odors and clumps will remain on the surface.

Many cats… many boxes?
Experts agree: the number of litter boxes in your home should be one more than the number of cats, and they should be placed in different rooms, especially if you own multiple cats. It’s all about resource sharing. This will not only prevent the problem of inappropriate urination and defecation, but also help to reduce the stress and tension that occurs when cats live together. In addition, the length of the litter box should be one and a half times the length of your cat, while the width should be equivalent to the cat’s length.

Is there any newcomer in the house?
With the arrival of a cat, dog or a child, it can cause problems to the cat because it changes its routine or cohabitation or leads to stress. Also it can have an impact to the litters, lids or not enough litter. Introduce the newcomer gradually to allow your cat to get used to his new roommate.

Did you move? Are you renovating your home?
Moving is a great source of stress for any pet, including cats. This could result in some unexpected reactions until fully comfortable in the new place. Renovations are also very stressful…

Were you gone for a few days?
Your absence may cause to the cat anxiety or may break its routine. That could also be that the litter is too full. Ask a loved one to spend time with your cat daily, play with him, feed him, pet him and clean his litter.

Does the urine look or smell different?
For any sudden change in your cat’s elimination habits, consulting your veterinarian should come to your mind first. This could be a serious problem and require medical cares. A urinary infection is a very serious disease for a cat and they are experts to hide pain.

You can visit Cat Educator website for some behavioral advices.