Litter Box Care Guidelines

Litter Box Care Guidelines

Litter Box Care Guidelines 1

House-soiling, inappropriate urination/defecation, spraying. A cat's use of locations other than the litter box comes under many names. Why do our cats do this? First and foremost, it is critical to ensure that there is no medical component to the behavior. Urinary tract-related disease can lead to death in less than 48 hours. The diseases are painful and debilitating Consult your veterinarian IMMEDIATELY if house-soiling commences. Waiting to see what happens could mean the difference between life and death. Once your veterinarian assesses the cat for health problems, discussions about diets and behavioral problems can follow. Many times, the veterinarian will identify multiple factors contributing to the problem, including medical, diet and behavioral problems. We are here to work with you and your cat to resolve these concerns. Location Location Location Provide more than one location in the household for litter boxes. Consider having one on each floor if space allows. Avoid moving boxes around. Depth Matters Experiment with different depths of litter. Most cats prefer 1-1.5 inch depth while others may prefer deeper litter. Add a new litter box if attempting to try different litter depths (or types). Try not to alternate the litter depth or type within existing litter boxes. Take note of which litter boxes get used the most and choose that depth of litter for the majority of the boxes. Negative Associations Keep litter boxes away from rooms that contain noisy equipment such as furnaces or washing machines. The noises may frighten the cat. Avoid administering medications or doing anything unpleasant to your cat while they are in the litter box or litter box area. Do not Soil Where You Eat Keep food and water dishes in a separate room or more than 5 feet away from the litter boxes. Cats are fastidious by nature and do not favor a soiled box. In the wild, they have endless location options in which to do their business. How can we expect them to walk in a pile of old feces and urine clumps? Feline behavior specialists have comprised a list of litter-box criteria based on studies demonstrating what is preferable to cats: Number of Boxes Provide one litter box per household cat PLUS one additional box. For example, a household with three cats should have four litter boxes. Scented or Unscented Use unscented clumping litter. Most cats prefer this texture best next to sandbox sand. Scented litters can be unpleasant and even painful to cats, since their sense of smell is significantly more sensitive than a human's. Clay Versus Other While some cats will tolerate some of the newer 'natural' types of litters (corn, wheat, etc.), they are generally not preferred and will not be tolerated in instances where the cat is unwell or experiencing anxiety/stress. Size Matters Provide large size litter boxes that the cats are comfortable moving around in. Some older, arthritic cats may prefer boxes with LOW walls or a low door cut in the box. Climbing over the high walls may be painful. Keep it Open Remove covers from most or all of the litter boxes. Most cats do not feel comfortable in a covered box. Keep it Clean Scoop litter once to twice daily. More often is best. Empty out the litter tray once every one to two weeks. Clean the litter box with a mild detergent, rinse well, and dry well before adding new litter.

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What can I use in my rabbit's litter box?

The best option is to have a grate over the litter box. There are some cat boxes that have a grid or are a sifting system you can use. Florescent lighting grid or some wire mesh can also work to make your own grid. If your rabbit does not chew, you can use a plastic stitching screen from a craft store. The grid basically keeps the rabbit off of the litter so it does not get in the fur or stain the feet. I have a giant angora, I use a stitching screen under a wire mesh to keep her off the litter and to make cleaning easier. For the actual litter, I use wood pellets. You can use horse stall bedding, wood stove pellets or some cat litters. It is cheap and effective. I just have to cover the bottom of the litter box and that will last about a week. It absorbs both the liquid and odor really well. I only notice a smell if I leave if a too long between cleaning. In the rest of the cage, I use fleece blankets.

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