Kittens normally learn where to use the litter box from observing their mother. If she is consistent in using one, chances are her kitten will be, too. However, some kittens have problems learning because they were taken from their mother too early. Kittens can begin learning to use a litter box as early as three to four weeks but, fortunately, you can still have success training them after that.
If this is the case with your new kitten, you’ll want to learn how to train him or her to use the litter box quickly.
These litter box training tips will help.
Cats instinctively cover over the results of their elimination processes but they may not automatically use the litter box. They may use a rug, pull toilet tissue from the roll or even in clothing on the floor or elsewhere. It’s better to prevent a problem by training a kitten to use a litter box than having to break a kitten from using the bathroom elsewhere.
Place the litter in an easy-to-reach location and make sure the kitten knows where it is. Privacy is important to cats so you may want to place it in an out-of-the-way spot such as the bathroom. A plain, shallow litter box should suffice; there’s really no need to purchase the expensive boxes with lids.
As soon as you get your kitten home, put it into the litter. Help the kitten scratch in the litter by gently taking its paws into your hands and making a scratching motion once or twice. Most likely the kitten will jump right out – that’s alright. You can put it back in a little later.
Cats will generally need to use the litter box after waking up first thing in the morning, after they’ve eaten, after playing and again after waking from a nap. Your goal is to get your kitten on a schedule so you can take it to the litter box at the above times. Place the kitten in the litter box, watch to see if they are actually using the box and then leave it to its business.
Rather than yelling at or squirting a cat to help them learn to use the litter, clean up their mess with an enzyme cleaner designed to remove odor and stains. Then place the kitten back into the litter box when you know it normally goes to the bathroom and soon you’ll have a kitten that is accident free and using the litter box all of the time.
Keep in mind that cats are clean creatures. They will spend much of the day preening. You’ll want to clean out their litter box after they’ve used it. Litter that clumps and can be scooped will help with this task. It is also important to remember that pregnant women should never handle litter boxes due to the health risks associated with cat feces.
When you bring home a new kitten you want to ensure it feels loved and protected. You also want to know you’ve done everything you can to help it do well at using the litter box. Following the above tips can help you and your kitten both succeed.