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Lapsed Litterbox Users

One in every 10 cats will have a litterbox lapse in his or her lifetime. Here are the most common reasons:

  • The cat is suffering from a urinary tract problem.
  • The cat experiences a bout of geriatric constipation.
  • The cat has not been spayed or neutered and is marking territory.
  • The caretaker does not keep the litterbox clean.
  • The litterbox has a hood on it (cats don’t like to feel trapped).
  • The owner uses disposable plastic liners.
  • The litter is scented (cats dislike perfume!).
  • The litter brand and type was suddenly changed.
  • The litterbox was washed with a harsh cleaning product.
  • The litter substrate is sharp and uncomfortable and it irritates the cat’s sensitive paw pads.
  • The cat has been declawed and finds digging in the litter painful.
  • There are not enough litterboxes in the house (1 per cat, plus 1).
  • The litterboxes are all in one area.
  • The cat is kept from using the litterbox by another family pet.
  • The location of the litterbox is too busy or too remote.
  • The owner suddenly changes the location of the litterbox.
  • The cat accidentally gets locked out of the room where the litterbox is located.
  • The cat was never properly trained to use the litterbox
  •  in the first place.
  • The cat is stressed by a change in routine or the environment, including work schedule changes, overnight guests, new furniture, remodeling, outside animals seen through the window, etc.

(The stress target in cats is the bladder.)

For more detailed information on how to solve litterbox problems see the following articles: ”The Prevention and Solution of LitterBox Problems” and "The Unabridged Guide to Solving LitterBox Problems".

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