Most kittens are fairly easy to litter train and will generally begin to use a litter box soon after being introduced to one. Your new cat may already know how to use a litter pan, since many kittens learn to use it from watching their mothers. Keep in mind that cats can be very finicky. They can be easily put off by something for lots of reasons – some of which we may never understand!. That’s why its important to choose the right tray, and train your cat properly
Before you start litter training, its important to realize that cats normally desire to do their business outdoors. Unless they are marking territory, they prefer to go and then cover it up. Cats don’t instinctively like using a cat litter box; be sure to choose one that is acceptable to her. In order to achieve success with litter training, you will need to bear the following things in mind:
1. Buy the same type of litter that your cat has been using with the previous owner, or breeder. This will make training easier.
2. Choose a litter box that is easy for your kitten to use, and then fill the tray with litter to the depth recommended by the cat litter manufacturer – the tray should be deep enough to prevent the litter from been scattered over the floor whilst being used.
3. Place your litter tray in an easily accessible and traffic-free corner of the room – keeping it well away from your kitten’s food and water dishes. In some cases, it helps to provide your kitten with more than one litter box, to allow for greater access to a box in your home.
4. If you have more than one cat, you will need to ensure that each cat has its own litter pan in a different area. Most cats like to do their business in solitude, and are put off by having to share a litter box.
5. Acquaint your new cat to her litter box by putting her in it often, particularly after she eats. Remember to praise your kitten when she is in the tray, and praise even more when she does use it.
6. Keep your cat’s litter tray clean by removing any soiled litter regularly. Give the pan a throrough cleaning at least one every week. Because many household solutions can be harmful to your cat, its always best to clean the litter pan with a disinfectant made especially for pets. Because some cleaners may have a strong chemical smell, you should avoid anything with a heavy scent that your cat may dislike. It will deter him from using the litter pan. A pregnant woman should never clean a litter tray, due to the risk of toxoplasmosis.
7. Never leave your kitten alone without access to a litter box. Cats can develop cystitis if they are unable to relieve themselves for long periods of time.
Since cats don’t typically respond to verbal commands like dogs do, you need to be very patient during the training process. If you do find your kitten crouching and scratching in a corner of the room, you will need to pick it up immediately and place it in the litter box. Be patient with your kitten, most catch on to litter training quickly, but others require more patience. If you find that your kitten still doesn’t get the message, then you could try using a spray that is specially formulated to attract cats to their litter boxes. For the stubborn cat that decides to use furniture or another undesired area for relieving herself, there are cat deterrent sprays available to keep this from happening. If all goes well, your kitten will soon begin to use her litter tray herself without any further intervention from you.