6 Tips and Tricks For Dealing With Litter Box Issues

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Please find below a Guest Post by Amber Kingsley with useful tips around keeping your house safe without harming your cat.

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6 Tips and Tricks For Dealing With Litter Box Issues

Dealing with a litter box is just one of the many responsibilities of having a cat in your flat. But you’re certainly not alone since sales of cat litter in the UK is estimated to be worth up to £120 million. Britain’s kittens (and older cats) use up to 260,000 tonnes of the dusty substance annually, that’s a lot of litter!

So unless you’ve trained your feline to use the toilet, which is possible in some cases, you’ll need to scoop daily and change the litter box regularly. In this light, here are 6 tips on making this routine and space as clean and simple as possible:


#1 – Automate The Process

There’s always the option of purchasing one of those automatic, self-cleaning, electric litter boxes,  but is this really a better choice? Well that depends, on the plus side:

  • There’s no need to deal with the litter box on a daily basis
  • Simple disposal of waste
  • Less odor in and around the litter box

But on the down side, you still have to change the litter and “out of sight – out of mind” may have you neglecting your duties and those automated options are:

  • Pricey and use power which also comes with a cost
  • Not pet friendly at times and could frighten your feline
  • The cleaning cycle can be loud and irritate you or your cat

#2 – The Cat Mat

If you’re doing it the old fashion way or have a new device, be sure to put some kind of mat underneath the box that’s little bit larger than the box itself. This is a great way to keep those stray granules under control, which makes the process better for both you and the cat.

#3 – Deodorize

Although some litter brands claim to have deodorizing capabilities, some cats can be put off by this scent and find it unpleasant. Since it’s not a good idea to use chemical based materials around your kitties, try baking soda or charcoal instead. If your kitty doesn’t have a problem with scented litter, then by all means, use what you both prefer.


#4 – To Line or Not To Line

Cat box liners are meant for the convenience of the owner and as advertised, they can be gathered up like a bow and tied up like a rubbish bag. But given a cat’s natural curiosity and playful streak, they’re likely to tear them into shreds before you have the chance to change them. Also, some pet owners think it’s like double-duty, putting plastic on plastic. But again, to each his own.

#5 – Spend More and Get More

If you buy the cheapest kitty litter you can get your hands on, you’ll get exactly that. Those less expensive brands are dusty, messier, grainy and do little or nothing to control the odor. Spending a little more on a clumping brand for example, you won’t use as much, change it less frequently and actually save money in the long run.

#6 – Solving Problems

If your cat does unexpectedly stop using the litter box, especially when it’s just been changed or cleaned, your first call should be to your veterinarian. There are medical conditions that can cause a cat to change their bathroom routine which includes not using the litter box. Don’t assume that this is a behavioral issue when there could be something seriously wrong with your cat.

What about your routine? Do you have a particular brand you prefer? Share your thoughts and suggestions below.

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52 thoughts on “6 Tips and Tricks For Dealing With Litter Box Issues

  1. TiggerHaywood says:

    The article mentions dust and clumping, which would suggest to me it only deals with sand or gravel-based cat litter. We much prefer paper-based litter, which we first discovered in Australia (my home country), but have since found here in major pet shops. This litter is very natural, made from recycled paper, creates no dust, has no scent, is easy to clean and gentle on the paws. The brand we’ve found here in the U.K. is Bio-Catolet. I should clarify that I’ve always been an outdoor cat and much, much prefer the feel of soil under my claws, but if I have to stay inside for any reason, then that’s the litter Mum and I prefer.

  2. Rosie Malezer says:

    Reblogged this on Rosie Malezer and commented:
    Always make sure you have one extra box than you have cats. If you have 3 cats, have 4 litter boxes!

    Our cats all have decent sized mats under their boxes so they have somewhere to wipe their feet when they are finished tackling their business inside. We also use covered litter boxes (like little caves) but ensure the door is removed each time we buy a new one. Our cats love their privacy, but they also enjoy breathing 😉

  3. helentastic67 says:

    I am forced to use liners so I can have my carers change the kitty litter. I’ve managed to keep smells under control by scooping with toilet paper in between, covering with a light sprinkle of more kitty litter, and a good supply of insects. My laundry is right next to my bedroom and you know they love to descicrate just when you go to bed, and of course as soon as it’s fresh and clean. Spraying a little cat nip in that general area also encourages my fur-baby to think it’s a safe place.

  4. grannyK says:

    I tried liners. I don’t know what I was thinking! Those things didn’t make it an hour with our active and curious cats! We have 2 litter boxes and clean them twice daily. Good tips and advice!

  5. Laura (PA Pict) says:

    I use a wheat litter for my cats. It’s not gig the same deodorizing powers but it’s better for the environment given how much I use and it’s very easy to clean both in terms of clumping and cleaning out the entire box.

  6. chubbysmom says:

    Currently used “The World’s Best Litter” I think it’s made with corn. I like that it can be flushed down the toilet…Been contemplating those automatic ones though…

  7. The Chaos Realm says:

    Just a little note re: the World’s Best Cat Litter. I loved it too. One day, I cleaned out the litter box and filled it up from a new bag. The next morning I awoke and went to scoop out the litter. In my morning stupor, I was like “That’s weird, it looks like the litter is moving.” I rubbed my eyes and took a closer look. Yep, it was moving–undulating like a wave. With thousands upon thousands of what I later learned from the pest control guy were grain mites. My entire room was infested. Teeny tiny white mites all over everything: my radio, my books, my shelves–probably millions of grain mites from the litter. Luckily, I didn’t have to use pesticides to fix the situation…just close up the room and run a dehumidifier and keep wiping everything down until the infestation ceased.

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  9. Jill says:

    I have a great litter tray that does not smell. It is an Australian product called Oz Litter Tray, and it is a two-tier tray to use with the special pellets which come from plantation waste material. The litter pellets go into the top tray which is like a sieve. Once the pellets are wet, they break down and a couple of shakes send the fine particles into the bottom tray. This tray can safely be emptied into the garden or compost. Wash the bottom tray, put in a handful of pellets and a few more in the top tray if needed and you are good to go. It also comes with a scoop which hangs on the side of the tray to scoop out the solids. Highly recommend.

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