Many cat owners have experienced issues with, or resulting from, their pet’s toileting – little accidents in the house, stress urination, an unhappy pet – but it doesn’t need to be difficult. Here are my tried and tested tips for litter tray heaven.
- Always have a litter tray in your home, even if your cat usually goes to the loo outdoors. That way, if they’re caught short – perhaps if they’re shut in the house at night-time – they always have the option of using the litter tray rather than your soft furnishings.
- Buy the biggest litter tray that you can find (try zooplus.co.uk). Cats love to dig around when they’re going to the loo, and they like to cover things up once they’ve finished. It’s in their DNA to do this – as wild cats, covering all traces of their scent would make them less vulnerable to predators. Corner litter trays are a great space-saver – Zooplus do a fantastic corner tray which is huge and sturdy. If you have an elderly cat, make sure they can climb into the litter tray easily – some have one end lower than the other, for easier access.
- Use a “sandy” litter. Again, going back to their days as wild cats, our domestic felines prefer the feel of sand on their little pads rather than wood pellets/grit/crystals. Sand just feels more natural to them, and it’s softer. A clumping cat litter like Golden Grey or Golden White not only clumps brilliantly, it also masks all smells and cats like the feel of it on their paws. Win – win – win!
- Many cat owners use the “one litter tray per cat plus one” method. This works in my house as I have three indoor cats and they need plenty of loo options, but if your cats usually toilet outdoors this might be overkill. Instead, try just having the one litter tray per cat rather than having the extra one. The same applies if you only have one cat – one litter tray should suffice because they have no conflict from another cat.
- Make sure your litter tray is in a quiet location with no “through traffic”. Cats really don’t want to be disturbed when they’re going to the loo, and if they don’t have a secluded place to do their business they will be reluctant to use the litter tray. Ideally, the litter tray should be placed in an area where few people visit, away from noisy machinery, and easily accessible at all times.
- Let’s face it – litter trays aren’t the most attractive things to have in the house. So, after you’ve bought your nice big litter tray with its sweet-smelling, sandy litter, try putting a few (cat-friendly) plants nearby – not only will this make the area look better, but also your cat will be glad of the extra privacy.