I agree. There is really nothing grosser than cat pee. Especially when it’s on your bed, rug, walls or…well, anywhere other than the box (and even then, it’s pretty gross). Cats peeing outside the box can be a big downer.
But, according to many experts, inappropriate elimination (a.k.a. CAT PEE PROBLEM) is actually a pretty solvable issue….as long as you’re willing to put a little effort into it.
Here are 10 reasons your cat might be snubbing the litter box and what to do about it:
1. Health Problems
Always start here. Get your cat to the vet for a thorough check up before anything else. You’d be surprised at the number of health-related issues that can cause a cat to pee outside the box. I heard about one woman whose cat had fleas and was so uncomfortable that he was peeing on the rug. Once the fleas were gone…the cat was back in the box.
2. Number of Litter Boxes
Most experts agree that you should have one box for each cat plus one extra. I realize this can be challenging….and finding places for multiple boxes can be hard. But if your cat is peeing outside the box, it’s a good idea to figure it out. And, remember to put the boxes in different locations in the house. To your cat, three boxes lined up in a row = one box.
3. Where The Litter Boxes Are Located
Location is everything, baby. Your cat might not love where the box is located. If it’s in a noisy or threatening area, he may elect to do his biz elsewhere. Washing machines, furnaces and heavy trafficked areas are places your cat might not like. Do other pets or kids have easy access to the litter box area where your cat might feel threatened or trapped?
4. Type of Litter You’re Using
Most litters are made with owner convenience in mind…..not whether or not the cat likes it. Doesn’t seem fair, does it? Some things to think about: try an unscented litter or a finer material. You can try a variety to see what your cat prefers. Some experts recommend creating a litter box buffet….line up several of the same boxes with different litters (this is one time boxes in a row is okay) and see which gets the most action.
5. How Much Kitty Litter You’re Using
Some cats are sensitive to the depth of the litter in the box because when they use the potty, they have to grab the litter with their paws to stabilize themselves. Super deep litter can be painful to grip for some cats, particularly older cats who might suffer from arthritis. Also, some cats don’t like the feel of the litter grazing against their nether regions while they’re “occupied.”
6. Type of Litter Box
Again, most boxes are made for the owner’s convenience, not the cat’s comfort. If you’re using a covered box, try taking off the lid. Or, consider pitching your dinky pet store box and buying a big, clear underbed storage container or even using your kids’ old plastic baby pool. Cats like space when they’re in their loo. Give it to them!
If your cat is older and suffers from arthritis, try a box with lower sides that will be easier to get into. For you DIY types, use a box cutter to cute one side lower than the rest (be sure to sand the edges after you cut so kitty doesn’t get cut!) so he can get in and out more easily.
7. Litter Box Liners
Most cats don’t like these liners…they move around and claws can get stuck on them. And, really, they’re not that convenient.
8. Harsh, Scented Cleaning Products
Don’t use smelly, scented, or harsh cleaning products to scrub out the box. Your cat’s sensitive sniffer may take offense. I like to use an all natural, unscented cleaner and hot water. Scrub the heck out of that box and you should be fine. And don’t forget to completely replace the litter boxes periodically.
9. Stressed Out Cat
Lots of things can throw a kitty’s psyche out of whack: Moving, new furniture, house guests, a new baby, a new cat, etc. Give your cat some time to adjust to the new situation. Practice patience and, above all, don’t give up on him! When he’s stressed out, your cat needs you more than ever. If you do have a new situation, consider consulting with a behaviorist like one of our fave experts, Marilyn Krieger. Behaviorists can give you great insight into your particular situation and lots of ideas for how to remedy the problem.
10. Dirty Box
SCOOP THE BOX DAILY. Seriously. It will make your cats happier and keep the stink at bay. Cats may avoid a dirty litter box (wouldn’t you?).
Believe me, I know how disgusting cat urine can be. And who has time to deal with cat pee all over the house, on top of everything else? Please, please don’t give up on your cat and please don’t relinquish him to a shelter. What do you think is going to happen to a cat in a shelter who has a pee problem? Right. You owe it to him to work through it.
Visit our sister site, The Happy Litter Box, for more
Original article and pictures take http://www.crayonsandcollars.com/10-reasons-your-cat-might-be-peeing-outside-the-litter-box/ site