CHOOSING THE RIGHT LITTER BOX FOR YOUR CAT
Okay so you’ve got your beloved feline friend at home with you now. You love and feel blessed for the cuddles, the games and just hanging out with your new kitty. However, the warm feeling benefits of having a brand new cat also comes with the practicalities such as showing your pet how to use a cat litter box or tray.
Using a cat toilet of sorts is something a kitty learns fairly naturally and quickly but it’s always helpful to have tips, as well as some of the disadvantages / advantages of each type of cat toilet that is available in the wide range found on the exciting Modern Pets online store.
INITIAL HANDY TIPS
First thing to note when choosing a cat litter product, as per expert website Ask the Cat Doctor.com suggests, is to make sure that the cat litter box or tray is large enough (depending on the size of your cat) to be as comfortable as possible. It should also contain enough litter material so that your cat can ‘dig and dig to their heart’s content so they can cover their eliminations as much as they wish’.
For the households that have more than one cat, pet website Animal Planet.com suggests the general rule of thumb is that the number of litter boxes should equal the number of cats, plus one. In other words, if you have one cat, there should be two litter boxes in your home. Two cats need three boxes, and so on. This is especially important for a cat that is having trouble using a litter box.
Experienced cat foster mum shares this view on website Petfinder.com, where she also recommends new adopters have two litter boxes per cat. “Some cats just don’t like sharing litter boxes, and this ratio lets each cat claim his own. Even if they don’t mind sharing, keeping extra litter boxes around ensures that, if one of your cats is using one litter box and the scary washing machine is running next to the litter box in the basement, there will still be an appropriate place for your other cat to relieve himself.”
Other tips to get your cat going instinctively and regularly to the toilet in its new cat litter box or tray are:
- Putting the cat litter box or tray in a private and quiet place which is away from the main house. For example the laundry, or an indoor garage and so forth. Cats need privacy to feel relaxed enough to go to the toilet.
- When bringing your cat home for the first time in its cat box, make sure to first take it to where the cat toilet is. Hang out there for awhile so your cat can sniff around and get to terms with the shape and texture.
- During initial training and when key activities such as sleeping, eating and playing sessions are concluding, these are excellent times to take your cat and place it in the cat litter tray and leave there in privacy. From then it will fairly quickly become a habit for your cat to go on its own whenever it feels the need.
CHOOSING THE CORRECT CAT LITTER BOX SIZE
How big should a litter box be? When considering a cat litter box, the size and dimensions of the box are critical factors to consider. It is essential to choose the right size box, depending on the size of the cat, to ensure that the cat is as comfortable as possible while using it. Generally, the larger the cat, the larger the litter box required. A good rule of thumb is to select a box that is at least one and a half times the length of the cat, from nose to tail.
Having the right size litter box also allows the cat enough space to dig, move around, and cover its eliminations comfortably. Experts also recommend filling the box with enough litter material so that the cat can dig to their heart's content and cover their eliminations. The amount of litter material required varies depending on the size of the box and the cat.
For households with multiple cats, it is crucial to have enough litter boxes to cater to each cat's needs. The general rule of thumb is to have one litter box per cat, plus one extra. For example, if you have two cats, you should have three litter boxes in the home. Some cats don't like to share litter boxes, and having multiple boxes ensures that each cat has its toilet area. It is also helpful in ensuring that each cat has an appropriate place to relieve itself in case one litter box is unavailable.
When training your cat to use a litter box, it is essential to choose a private and quiet location, such as the laundry or indoor garage, away from human socializing areas. The cat requires privacy to feel relaxed enough to go to the toilet. Once you bring your cat home, take it to where the litter box is and let it sniff around and get familiar with the shape and texture. It's also helpful to take the cat to the litter box after key activities like eating, playing, or sleeping, as this encourages the cat to associate the box with going to the toilet.
DIFFERENT KINDS OF CAT LITTER BOXES OR TRAYS
When choosing the right kind of cat toilet product for your cat there are of course many choices on the market. These can be broken into the main groups below:
OPEN CAT LITTER TRAYS / BOXES
There are a variety of basic and easy-to-use types of cat litter products which do not have top or cover.
If your living space is large and your cat toilet can be placed away from human socialising spaces, then these litter boxes are a good option. Other advantages are:
- They make it easy for an owner to see when it is dirty and then easily access to clean
- Some open litter trays come with a built in sifter (rather than a scoop) so that cleaning of litter can be done much easier and quicker, such as the Lift to Sift by Moderna.
- Some cats enjoy the easy access of this type of box (if it is away and private enough for them to feel comfortable).
- They come in very sturdy designs.
- If they are not deep enough and cats can’t dig properly to cover their toilet waste they will be put off using them.
ENCLOSED OR HOODED CAT LITTER TRAYS / BOXES
There are many different styles and designs for this type of litter box including the ‘Corner hooded little trays’. Pet website The Cat Site.com describes this kind ‘as a triangular-shaped box intended for use in the room's corner. It can be high-sided or of regular height and it can even be a covered box. Its main advantage is aesthetic, in case you decide to place the box in the corner of a room’.
Also included in this group are ‘Top entry litter boxes’ - a type of enclosed litter box accessed from the top. Having the top entry can sometime prevent a cat from dragging the litter over the floor as they exit the litter box. However, it is not a good fit for really young kittens or an older cat that is ill.
Modern Pets offers a variety of enclosed cat litter products of which all have some kind of lid or hood which fully covers / encloses the cat toilet box.
Expert website Love to Know.com gives the following advantages to purchasing an enclosed cat litter box:
- The cover helps prevent your cat from spraying urine on the surrounding walls and floor.
- Your cat is less likely to toss litter material out of the box when digging.
- The cover helps contain litter box odours.
- Since the inside of the box is hidden from view, this type of litter box is more pleasant to have in your home.
- Shy cats can have a bit more privacy and may be more willing to use a covered box rather than an open one.
- Available in extra large sizes to provide an ultra comfortable experience for large size cats. The Mega Comfy Litter Box by Moderna is a roomy 65cm long.
- They need to be kept very clean because otherwise the enclosed odours become really smelly and will put your cat off from using it.
If this cat litter box or tray is not tall enough for your cat, again it will make it uncomfortable for it to use as they may need to hunch too much
SELF- FORMULATED CLEANING CAT LITTER OR AUTOMATIC CAT LITTER BOXES
The Self-Cleaning Cat Litter Box definitely deserves its own category. Fairly new on the market this box cleans itself, so that you don’t have to scoop out contents yourself.
When your cat uses this type of box, the wet liquids soak through into the granules that are prepared to kill smells and bacteria and the solids are sent away by the box’s in-built mechanisms and sent down the drain.
The mechanisms then vigorously scrub and sanitise the granules inside the box with special solutions. The granules are then dried ready to be reused. These boxes will all have detailed activation instructions depending on the brand or make.
MULTI-FUNCTIONAL LITTER BOX
In this ever-changing modern world where comfort and ease is becoming the norm, this cat litter box is becoming more popular as it not only acts as a litter box; it is also a cat scratcher and a bed.
Therefore with this clever cat litter box, three of your cat's daily activities such as sleeping, playing and littering are essentially taken care of all in one product. The Moderna Cat Concepts 3-in-1 features a cosy washable bed, scratcher pole with toy, two solid latching locks and a charcoal filter that absorbs unwanted litter box odours.
To view all of Modern Pets cat litter boxes or tray, click here.