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How to Litter Train a Cat

How to Litter Train your Cat
How to Litter Train your Cat

Mother cats often train their kittens to use a litter box so a new cat may already be housebroken.  If not, don’t worry.  Cats are quick studies.  

Step one: Make sure you choose a litter box that’s right for your cat. Kittens and older cats prefer boxes with lower sides. Larger cats will need -- you guessed it, larger boxes.

You will need a cat to train, a litter box, cat litter, some dishwashing detergent, some water and some soap.  

Step two:   Set up the litter box in an area separate from where your cat eats and sleeps.  

Step three:   Try to keep the litter box in an easily accessible but semi-hidden place so the cat has privacy.  

Step four:   After each feeding place the cat in the litter box.  

Step five:   Gently scratch the cat’s front paws in the litter to show that this is his own personal bathroom.  

Step six:   Once the cat has used the litter box, praise and play with him to reinforce the behavior.  

Step seven:   Make sure the litter box is clean.  You should remove solid waste every day and clean the entire litter box with detergent and water once a week -- or more, if it smells of urine.  And always wash your hands after handling used litter.  If your cat hasn’t caught on after several days, try a different kind of litter.  He may not like the texture or scent of the one you chose.  

Step eight:   Is kitty still being stubborn?  Try moving the litter box to a more secluded spot.  

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Like humans, cats seek clues

Like humans, cats seek clues about a person’s mood by listening to his voice. When you talk to your cat, be sure that your tone matches the message you want to convey. If you want your cat to know you’re upset that he just peed on the rug, do what his mom would do. Gently pick him up by the scruff of his neck and growl.