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Behavior

Behavior There are a variety of behavior issues that can arise during a cat’s lifetime. In general behavior problems become more difficult to correct the longer a cat has been engaged in the behavior. Be sure to contact your veterinarian with questions and concerns as your veterinarian and support staff are a great resource for information and helpful ideas.

One of the more common behavior problems that arise for feline patients involves elimination of urine or stool in locations outside of the litter box. There are medical conditions, behavioral issues and home environment factors that can contribute to the problem. The earlier these problems are investigated the greater likelihood your veterinarian will be able to help you identify the cause, develop a plan and resolve the elimination problem. Below we have included a list of general litter box guideline to assist you in treating and preventing elimination problems.

A Little Bit of Litter Box Advice

  • Ideally, you should have one pan per cat plus one extra. (E.g., in a three-cat household, four pans)
  • Put pans in at least two locations, at least one pan per floor of your house. Sometimes cats guard litter boxes. Having boxes in different areas helps prevent this. Also, older cats with arthritis may have difficulty going up and down stairs.
  • Don’t use a hood. It will trap odor. Rims may be OK but some cats don’t like them either. If you have several pans you can offer a variety of rimmed and open pans.
  • Generally, extra–large or jumbo pans are best.
  • We recommend clumping litter. Softer textures are best and liners are not necessary with scooping or clumping litters.
  • Litters without additives are best. Baking soda sizzles when wet and may frighten your kitty out of the box. Deodorizers that smell nice to us may be offensive to your cat, whose sense of smell is far more developed.
  • Scoop daily! Cats may not use a pan with stool or urine in it. In multi–cat households, cats often will not use a box that another cat has used.
  • Empty and scrub the pan every month or two to decrease odors that become trapped in the plastic. Replace the box every year.
  • Use enzymatic odor eliminators on areas where you can has had an accident. Anti–Icky Poo is available at Cats & Critters or Nature’s Miracle is available commercially.

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