Common mistakes in litter box placement

By on April 25, 2020

Setting up litter boxes the right way is the foremost step in solving the cat litter problems. Meaning, if you get too much of dealing with cat litter problems, you might’ve set up the litter boxes wrong. Litter boxes are simply important to cats and when they associate the pain and discomfort with the poop boxes, it is simply going to add to the litter box problems.

A simple indication from your cat that you have set up the litter box wrong is you’re having a hard time to persuade to do her business in the box and not on the floor or the carpet. If everything else is fine then your cat would (happily) do her business inside her litter box and won’t spray anywhere else.

However, despite all your efforts to train your cat to use her poop box, you won’t figure out what’s wrong with her. And in that case, either your cat has associated bad feelings with the litter box or you haven’t yet set it up the right way. Here are some signs that you have set up the litter box wrong and we will also discuss how to fix that.

1.  Your Cats Don’t Have Enough Litter Boxes

If you have one cat, you will at least need two litter boxes. But in the case where you own 10 cats, one or two litter boxes won’t do the job. Ideally, you should place 11 litter boxes in different places in your house. The need to place these many litter boxes is because cats are territorial and they need separate litter boxes. In a nutshell, you should follow this rule of thumb: no. litter box required is equal to no. of cats you have plus one. If you don’t have enough litter boxes, you should put some more in your house.

2.  Litter Boxes Are Placed At Not So Cat-Friendly Places

When you get enough litter boxes, just putting them side by side in one place is definitely not going to work. You have to put it at ‘Socially Important Places’. Yes, you heard it right. According to Jackson Galaxy, aka Cat Daddy, you need to place litter boxes at socially important places where your cat likes to hang out and not under the car in the garage or beside the washing machine in the bathroom where you don’t have to look at the litter box so often.

Moreover, cats don’t need privacy. There are some camouflage litter boxes available which can be placed as an integral part of the furniture. That’s a delusion. It’s us who need privacy because we can’t stand the sight of cat poop.

If a cat had her way and wants to mark her territory, she would not hesitate to spray just right in front of your door. So never go for that kind of litter boxes. Simply, place litter boxes where the cat likes to hang out.

An easy way to identify ‘Social Important’ or ‘Cat-Friendly’ place is to put the litter box where your cat usually poops and pees outside the litter box. That spot is important to her and that is why she had sprayed that area to mark it as her territory in the first place. All in all, these places can be anywhere at home, for example, in a drawing-room or in a bedroom.

3.  You Use Scented Litter Or You Use Air Freshener To Mask Litter Odor

Let me blurt out: Cats do not like scents or in other words, they have an aversion of the scents of litter and air fresheners. Have you ever tried to sneeze due to the strong scent of litter while pouring it into the litter box?

If yes, you will be surprised to read this. Cats have 200 million scent receptors whereas humans have 5 million of them. This is enough to realize how strong that smell would be for a cat.

Anthony Brooks from CatLovesBest says, “these scents and air fresheners contain the citrus smell, which cats abhor. That said, you shouldn’t use any kind of scented litter, plug-in, or sprinkle air freshener near the litter box.” Well, in fact, a clean litter box will never stink, so you can avoid using any kind of scents to mask the litter odor.

4.  When Setting Up The Litter Box You Don’t Leave More Than One Exit

Some of you might prefer a hooded litter box over a simple conventional litter box because you think your cat needs privacy to do her business. But privacy is not a matter of concern here. A litter box with hood generally has two holes (exits).

When you put it into a corner or just place it one exit facing towards a wall, you’re blocking one exit. Now in this case, if a cat is inside and another cat or a baby comes in front of the door, your cat will feel cornered and pinned down.

This will cause stress in cats and will associate bad memories with the litter box, and this will further create litter box problems. Hence, you should use an open conventional litter box or should place it the way there are multiple exits available so that your cat can exit the litter box whenever she wants.

5.  You Placed Litter Boxes Near A Dryer or Washing Machine

One more common mistake cat parents do is they place the litter box near a dryer or a washing machine just because they don’t have to see the litter box often. But this will create litter box problems. When a washing machine or dryer is in working condition, it will make a peculiar irritating noise.

Cats will freak out, and eventually, will stop using that litter box. Simply, never consider placing litter boxes near a dryer, washing machine, or any machine that produces any kind of noise.

Conclusively, you should keep all the points in mind while setting up the litter box. Cat litter problems exist mostly due to the wrong setup of the litter boxes. It is important to note that, if you have set up the litter box perfectly and still litter problems persist, you need to see a vet. Long may the felines live!

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