Litter training your kitten
Litter training your kitten is an important part of being a cat owner, and for the most part the process is simple. Often, once they know where the litter tray is, they will know what to do.
On the other hand, small things like placing the litter box in the ‘wrong’ place can put them off. We’ve put together some tips to help you when you’re litter training your kitten.
Where to put the tray when kitten litter training
The location of the litter tray is very important, particularly when you’re first litter training your kitten. Most cats like to go to the toilet in private. This means they need a place that is quiet, and preferably not used much to other members of the household.
If your kitten seems reluctant to use their tray, try moving it to a quieter place. Try to pick a room that does not have a lot of household appliances in it, such as dishwashers or washing machines, as these can make noises that scare your cat. If your cat becomes scared of their litter tray or the area around their litter tray, they will choose to go to the toilet somewhere else.
Keep their litter tray away from their bed, food and water bowls, too.
When your kitten does start using their litter tray, you may wish reward them. Giving your cat a tasty treat is a great way to do this, but make sure it counts towards their daily food allowance. Alternatively, give them some attention and play with them. This will show your kitten that using the litter tray is a positive experience.
Whilst acting positively when they do well is a good thing, acting negatively when they don’t do so well is less helpful. Cats tend not to understand punishment, so raising your voice at them won’t work; all it will do is scare them.
Sometimes, different cats prefer different litter trays and even litter, so it’s important to find something that suits your cat’s likes and dislikes. There are two main types of cat litter tray to choose from. ‘Open’ litter trays don’t have a top to them, and they are easy for your cat to get in and out of. Some cats don’t like the openness of these trays and prefer something more enclosed, so it’s best to buy a tray with a roof to it.
Every cat litter tray needs to be filled with cat litter. Try to always provide the same litter that your kitten is used to, as they will probably prefer it. If you have to change, try to go it gradually.
It may be helpful to have more than one litter box in your home, especially during litter training, so your kitten can easily access a tray wherever they are. If you live in a two-story house it may be a good idea to have one both upstairs and downstairs.
Keeping the litter tray clean
It’s well known that your furry friend only likes to go to the toilet in clean places. We recommend cleaning out your cat or kitten’s litter tray every day. It’s also important to scoop out any waste from the litter tray as soon as you notice it. Doing this will keep the tray clean and should encourage your cat to use it whenever they need the toilet. Remember not to use bleach or disinfectant when cleaning out a tray. This is because cats can have a bad reaction to the chemicals in both liquids, especially if they ingest it.