How to Train Your Cat to Use the Litter Box

How to Train Your Cat to Use the Litter Box

It might seem very difficult to try to teach a pet without even knowing how to speak its language, but more often, body language and gestures tell a lot more than words. Teaching your kitten to use the litter box will take time, just like it took with your child. The steps to be followed are almost similar, and it is also a way to build trust between you and your pet. It does not take much of your time either, unless you are completely unaware of how to handle your kitten.

How to Train Your Cat to Use the Litter box

Know Their Habits

Try to learn the pattern of her eliminating habits so that you know exactly when to carry her to the litter box. In the first weeks, you will need to manually carry her over to the litter box and introduce it to her.  Once she or he begins to become familiar with it, she will know and remember to use it.

  • Try to maintain a time table and feed your cat at regular intervals. Cats usually eliminate shortly after they eat. Once you keep a regular feeding schedule, you can easily follow the pattern of the toiletry habits.
  • Aside from the short intervals after their meals, they also generally eliminate after they are awake from a long sleep, or after little exercise or play session.

You need to be with her during these times in order to understand her habits.

How to Train Your Cat to Use the Litter box

Introduction to theLitter Box

When you are aware of her toiletry habits, or when to see her begin to eliminate somewhere else, quickly carry her to the litter box and put her inside it and let her finish with her job.  After each successful use of the litter box, it is important to reward the cat.

  • You need to praise her and show that you are very pleased with her behavior. Gently pat her, cuddle her and make her feel very special for doing it in the box.
  • Next, try calling her to the litter box instead of carrying her to it instantly like you did before. She should understand that she should not be eliminating anywhere else but the litter box. Especially, try to always call her from those places where she has soiled previously.

How to Train Your Cat to Use the Litter box

No Surprises

Cats might stop using the box because of nervousness if new cats have been introduced in the house, or if there are unfamiliar people or children visiting for a length of time.  It could be because you’re moving out of the house or on a vacation, or you’ve simply bought a new piece of furniture that gets put in her way along the path to her litter box. Any of these surprises might make her feel insecure.  These are some of the things you need to take into consideration if your cat stops using the litter box.

Take time to make your cat feel that the litter box is a secure, clean place, and that it’s the best place in the whole house for him to do his business. Some cats refuse to use it just because they feel it isn’t clean enough, so make sure you keep the litter box clean. Don’t be impatient and reward her always.

Thank you for reading, “How to Train Your Cat to Use the Litter Box

You may also enjoy: “Reasons Why You Should NEVER Declaw Your Cat”


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Jeannie Melanson, Animal Bliss Blog

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3 thoughts on “How to Train Your Cat to Use the Litter Box”

  1. Have had cats all my life. I have never had to teach a cat to use the litter box…..they just use it. Even kittens. I had a litter of 4 week old kittens with their mother last summer. Within two days of getting these cats they were following mom’s lead and using the litter box with no problem. If you want to, place some of their poop in the litter box and that’s about it……

    • Connie, I’ve always had good luck with my cats using the litter box too. I even took in four ferals, and they did it too, pretty quick! I feel bad for anyone that is having cat pee all over the place. It’s so hard to get rid of. Thanks for visiting Animal Bliss, and for your comment. Come back soon.


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