In all the excitement of becoming a cat owner, it can be easy to overlook the amount of responsibility involved in taking care of another life. But if you want your kitty to be happy and healthy, daily care will be required. And one job in particular is crucial for kitty’s well-being: the task of properly maintaining his/her litter box. Cats are very particular about these spaces, and if they’re not up to their standards they might forgo using a litter box in order to make a statement of discontent. As a compassionate pet clinic in Gilbert, AZ, Anasazi Animal Clinic cares about your pets as if they were our own. That’s why we wanted to share a few tips on how to keep your feline content when it comes to where he or she goes to the bathroom.
Your Cat’s Sense of Smell
The value of a fresh-smelling home is probably one of the main reasons you clean your cat’s litter box. But Fluffy has her own reasons for disliking a dirty litter box, and it’s not just because she’s a diva. Scientifically-speaking, your fluff ball has a much stronger sense of smell than you. Humans have around 5 million odor-sensitive cells in their nose, while cats have close to 200 million! That means if you can smell the soiled litter box, then your cat is probably dying!
Litter Box Placement
This is certainly an important first step: did you place the litter box somewhere comfortable and accessible for your cat(s)? Avoid placing the litter box near high traffic areas or noisy and heat-radiating appliances. Instead, place the box where your kitty can have some peace and quiet while doing her business—think laundry room. And if you have multiple cats, the general rule of thumb is to provide one box per cat. Depending on how many you have, it can be hard to find enough convenient spaces in your home, so consider a litter box station with multiple boxes next to each other.
Proper Litter Box Maintenance
In a previous blog post we discussed different types of cat litter that your feline may or may not prefer, so here we’ll add a few comments about how often the litter should be scooped and changed. You should be scooping their litter box(es) at least once a day and replacing their litter entirely about two times per week. Changing the litter could be as often as every day or as little as once a week, but the cleaning schedule depends on how many cats you have and if they seem content to use their litter box(es). And when it comes to washing the litter box, we recommend doing so once a week, or at the most, once every two weeks.
If you follow these simple guidelines, your cat should be happy to use her litter box. If she is still avoiding the litter box when relieving herself, there could be another issue at hand that should be discussed with your local vet. Anasazi Animal Clinic is a compassionate pet clinic, and we pride ourselves on the level of care we offer our pet owners and their four-legged companions. We’ll be happy to address any of your pet-related concerns, so call us today at (480) 426-8364.