One of the best parts of owning a cat is not having to take them out to go the bathroom like you do most dogs. So if your cat is peeing outside the litter box, it can be pretty frustrating. Try these 9 tips to end the horror and get your kitty using that box again.
#1 – Vet Visit
Before you do anything, make sure you cat doesn’t have a medical condition that is causing them to go outside the box. You won’t be successful with any training or other methods if it’s a medical problem.
#2 – Keep it Clean
Most cats are fussy about how clean the litter box is when they use it (wouldn’t you be?) My tabby will poop right outside of if it’s too dirty. So make sure you are keeping that box clean – for some finicky felines, it might mean scooping after each time she goes.
#3 – Neutering
If you have a male cat, he may be spraying, not peeing, outside the litterbox. Fixing him often solves this problem. If it persists, talk to a cat behaviorist about training options.
#4 – Give Options
Having multiple boxes can also help. This is especially important if you have more than one cat. Also, put the boxes in different locations and make sure they are private. Most cats do not want to do their business in a room where everyone hangs out. Litter boxes with covers are often well liked by cats, but not all. Some won’t go in one with a cover. Also try different litters. Give your cat lots of options so you can figure out his preference for going.
#5 – Reward & Praise
If you do see your cat using the litter box, give them plenty of praise and even a reward such as a treat, pet, or a play session when she is done. Just like dogs, cats respond to positive reinforcement.
#6 – Restrict Area
If your cat is constantly going in one particular area, restrict access to that area until they are using their litter box. Like potty training a puppy, start by giving your cat a small space with a couple litter boxes and expand her area gradually as long as she continues to go in the box.
#7 – Get Carpets Cleaned
If your cat has been going on your carpet, you need to get it professionally cleaned to make sure you have the smell out. Even if you don’t smell it, they do and will continue to go in those same places.
#8 – Pheromones
I have not tried this, but some believe spraying a feline pheromone such as Comfort Zone with Feliway on the place outside of the litter box where your cat went will deter him from going there again. Obviously, you can’t spray your entire house every day, but in between carpet cleaning is couldn’t hurt to try this. This site claims it works.
#9 – Call the Professionals
If you have tried everything and your cat is still not using his litter box, it’s time to call in a professional. A certified professional cat behaviorist or trainer can help you solve your kitty litter box woes. In fact, calling a professional before you try all these things can save you time and money because they will know how to figure out exactly what is happening with your cat faster than you.