Did you just spot a cat stool in some corner of your house? You must be wondering why is your kitten not using litter box lately.
We know it can be quite frustrating but know that it is not just your cat. This is a real problem. According to ASPCA, around 10% of all cats develop elimination problems at some stage of their lives.
While some cats stop using litter box altogether, other might use it only for either urination or defecation. Some cat owners complain about their cat not using the litter trays to poop but only for urination. Similarly, others report using it only for defecation.
Cleaning your cat’s stool and urine several times a day can become a real challenge, even for those who are passionate about all things cat. The probable reason may be that your kitten is not trained. But there could be other reasons as well. Whatever the case may be, you need to identify and resolve the underlying reasons for cats avoiding the litter box.
Why Is Your Cat Not Using Litter Box?
As per cat experts, the following are some of the reasons why your cat is not using the litter box.
Your Kitten Is Not Neutered
If you have been complaining about your cat not using litter box to urinate, you might need to get your kitten neutered. Nearing maturity, kitten develop an impulse to mark their territories by spraying. If this is the case, you need to make a vet appointment and get your feline fella neutered. Neutering will resolve the issues related to marking but you should do it as early as your kitten approaches maturity. If delayed, your kitten might ingrain the habit of marking.
There Is Something Wrong With the Litter Box
It is possible that the litter box is not meeting the needs of your kitten, or it is placed in an area that is not easily accessible to your cat. There might be too much noise or it could be too narrow or too open. It would help if you tried different things to figure out what works best for your kitten. Older cats not using the litter boxes can be attributed to their general weakness with old age or medical conditions like arthritis. Therefore, you need to make sure that the litter box is easily accessible and convenient to use.
Secondly, if the litter box is not clean, it may be another reason. Cats are very fastidious creatures. They are very conscious about their cleanliness and that of the places they go in. Try to keep the box and around it clean. You can also try changing the location of the litter box. For example, if your kitten chooses to eliminate in the hallway, you can try placing the litter box in the hallway.
There Is Something Wrong With Your Cat
If your kitten is still not using it despite making the litter box easily accessible and regular cleaning, there might be something wrong with your kitten. She might have some medical condition. It may have developed a condition in which she needs to eliminate urgently or might be having problems with elimination. You cannot guess what the reason is. Therefore, it is advised that you take your cat to the vet to rule out the chances of any medical condition.
Your Cat Might Not Be Getting Along With Other Cats
Are you keeping multiple cats under the same roof? If yes, you need to check if your cat is getting along with other feline fellas. It might appear that they don’t have any problem with each other, but one of your kittens might be getting bullied by others behind your back.
If this is the case, you need to work on improving relations between your cats. More importantly, you need to place several litter boxes throughout the home so that the cat has multiple options for elimination.
It Might Be the Stress
One of the underlying reasons behind cat litter box issues is stress. There are numerous potential triggers for a kitten, such as new pets, new people in the house, changing routine, the disappearance of a person from home, or disturbing smell or sounds. It might be challenging to identify the sources of stress but once done, you can easily address them. You can observe if there is a pattern to your cats’ defecation outside the litter box. For example, is it happening when kids are not home? When you are on vacation? Or when there are strangers at home? You can seek help from a cat behaviorist to resolve the stress issues.
Above are some of the reasons behind your cat not using the litter box. But it could be any other issue not listed above. We recommend trying some of the methods, such as keeping the litter box accessible and clean. But in the end, only a vet can have the final verdict. It is better if your cat visits the vet before it gets late.
We hope this article helped you identify why is your cat not using litter box. If you want to learn more about Cat Behavior, you can subscribe to our newsletter to get the latest updates, tips, and expert opinions, and advice about cat training, care, and health.