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Training a New Cat or Kitten to Use a Litter Box

Step-by-step Litter Box Training

Many cat owners won’t ever have to do much training at all, as kittens will often learn from their mothers how to use a litter box, but you can use the following mini-guide to train your cat or kitten to use their litter box should they require any help.

  • The most important thing you can do to ensure your cat eliminates regularly is to make sure your cat eats a healthy diet and has plenty of water available in their bowl at all times.

  • Make sure to keep your cat’s litter box in a clean, quiet, confined area, so they can peacefully eliminate away from any noise or distractions. This includes other pets and family members, so be conscious of the location you choose and what typically goes on in that room.

  • While covered boxes are great and generally preferred once your cat learns, an uncovered box may be preferable during training. The box should also be easy for a kitten to enter, so make sure the sides are low enough that they don’t have to leap into the box.

  • Should you kitten have an accident and eliminate outside of the box, clean up the mess, but place the waste inside the box if you can, and make sure the kitten sees you do it.

  • Place your kitten in his litter box frequently throughout the day, and praise him whenever he properly eliminates in the box. After a couple of days, the kitten should begin to understand that this is where he is supposed to go to the bathroom and walk over to the box on their own. If he doesn’t, continue placing the kitten in the box right after meals or waking up until he catches on. You may even try a different type of litter or litter box location.

If nothing seems to work, consult your veterinarian, as there may be a health issue that is causing your kitten’s behavior.


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