When Your Cat Won't Use the Litter Box

PET CARE

When Your Cat Won't Use the Litter Box

2 min read Jan 26, 2022

As a cat-owner, it’s only a matter of time before you discover that your precious pet has left you an unpleasant surprise somewhere on the floor, usually not too far from his litter box.

Why Is my Cat Avoiding the Litter Box?

If your cat is leaving you surprises that don’t seem like accidents, you should have the cat checked by your vet to eliminate the possibility of a medical condition. Sometimes an illness will cause a cat to urinate or defecate outside his litter box.

If nothing is wrong medically, think about what the cat might be unhappy about, such as his cat litter or box location. Try switching litter brands or moving the box to a new location. Also check to make sure the litter is cleaned often enough. Sometimes cats will balk at using a litter box that is too dirty. And every cat is different. Some cats will use the box even if it’s slightly dirty and others will turn away unless it’s cleaned daily.

If your box has a cover, try taking it off. Some cats don’t like to feel too enclosed when going to the bathroom. Other cats like the privacy of a cover. Or maybe the box is too small in the first place. Replace it with a bigger box and see if it makes a difference.

Other Reason they May be AVoiding the Litter Box

Sometimes emotional stress can cause a cat to stop using the litter box. Try to pinpoint what might be stressing your cat and eliminate the cause if you can. Cats like routine.

They can get stressed if you just move their litter box, so you can imagine that they might get pretty upset if you move to another house, add a new pet or person to the household, or even if you’re under some stress yourself.

If your cat is using other parts of your home as a toilet, he will most likely re-use spots. You can help stop that cycle by making the cat’s favorite spots undesirable. The scent left by the cat will draw it back to the same place over and over, so make sure to clean the area thoroughly and use a good enzymatic cleanser made to eliminate pet odors.

You can try different deterrents like placing aluminum foil or wax paper where the cat went (they don’t like the feel of it under their paws). Cats don’t like the smell of citrus, so you might want to place citrus-scented items in the area. You may try double-sided tape, and there are several alarm deterrents, citronella deterrents, and other products that you can try.

Consider Investing in Cat Insurance  

Looking for more ways to protect your kitty?  Consider investing in a cat insurance policy with MetLife Pet Insurance.1  Get your free quote today. 

 

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Nothing in this article should be construed as financial, legal or veterinary advice. Please consult your own advisors for questions relating to your and your pet’s specific circumstances.

1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.

2 Provided all terms of the policy are met. Application is subject to underwriting review and approval. Like most insurance policies, insurance policies issued by IAIC and MetGen contain certain deductibles, co-insurance, exclusions, exceptions, reductions, limitations, and terms for keeping them in force. For costs, complete details of coverage and exclusions, and a listing of approved states, please contact MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC.