Bringing home a new kitten brings a bundle of new responsibilities – and that’s just scratching the surface, because there’s one in particular you’ll probably want to get to, from the moment he steps paw into your home: Litterbox training.
Litterbox training can take some time to learn, but if you follow our great-smelling tips, your ‘accident’-prone pal will be using that box like it’s second nature, in no time.
Before we begin our toileting tutorial, there are some kitty-steps you’ll want to keep in mind as your pint-size pal is learning the litterbox:
- Don’t allow your kitten full run of the house – it just gives him more places to ‘go’, so scratch that.
- Try to contain your kitten in the room you spend the most time in. This way, you can keep a cat’s eye on him while he’s still mewsing about where to do his ‘business’.
- And just to make sure you’re pawsitively safe from poo-poo, it’s best to close all bedroom doors, and barricade other areas without doors.
Now that your home is good to go, let’s leap straight into the outhouse.
Begin by gently placing your kitten into the litterbox, a couple of minutes after he’s finished eating, and a couple of minutes after he’s woken from a sleep. While he’s in there, give him some time to sniff around and figure out what he wants to do.
Cats, by instinct, actually prefer to bury their wee and poo – so you may be pleasantly surprised to see yours digging and scratching at the litter, by himself. Pot-tay! But if he doesn’t, no biggie – gently take hold of his front paw and do a little digging and scratching demo. Your little latriner should get the idea.
When your wee one uses the litterbox, give him lots of praise – serenades, haikus and sonnets are also perfectly cat-ceptable. If he isn’t living up to the name ‘John’ just yet, no need to hissy-fit or force the little guy, if he’s not ready.
The best way to get your pick-of-the-litter ‘sandbox’ savvy by placing him in his litterbox at hourly intervals, throughout the day. Your purring prince may not want to go every hour, but this will reinforce the idea of where his throne is.
With little kitties learning a lot of big things at once, it’s only natural for ‘accidents’ to happen – and they may be frequent, at first. So, just be prepared to watch young Johnny carefully, at all times. If you sense a squat coming on, gently pick him up without a fuss, and place him in his litterbox.
The good mews: Once he’s used his litter tray, the smell of urine he’s left behind will encourage him to come back, next time.
Not all cat litter is the same, so it’s hard to know which one’s right for you and your compact compawdre. No worries – we’ve got the whole scoop, here:
• Purrfit Clay or Tofu litter are safe options for kittens.
• For adult cats, with litterboxes in inside spots, Purrfit Crystal or Clumping litters are great options.