Poor litter box maintenance is often to blame for a cat’s mishaps. Cats hate dirty litter boxes and may be driven to search for substitutes, such as a corner of the carpet. Your cat’s sense of smell is 14 times stronger than yours, so a litter box that smells reasonably clean to you may outright stink to your cat. Check out these tips for maintaining a clean litter box.
- Start with a Simple Litter Box
Unless your cat has a preference for covered boxes or the box is in an area where you’d like to keep it inconspicuous, such as the kitchen, the best box to start with is a plain rectangular one. Make sure the box is large enough that your cat can move around in it comfortably, with no overhang.
- Line the Litter Box
The use of litter box liners is optional, but they are convenient for tidy disposal of the used litter when it is time to empty and wash the box. Liners are a definite advantage when using non-scooping litter because they contain the excess urine that seems to pool, which is the reason most non-scooping litter must be changed frequently.
- Pour in Enough Cat Litter
Most cat litter manufacturers recommend using two to three inches of litter. You may want to use three to four inches if your cats are deep scratchers who will dig to the bottom of the litter box if you use less. Start with two inches and experiment until you find the ideal depth for your cat.
- Make Scooping up Waste Easy
With clumping litter, scooping is easy because urine clumps into fairly solid chunks which can be scooped out while sifting the clean litter back into the box. Poop gets coated with the litter so that it doesn’t stick to the scoop.
The litter box should be scooped a minimum of twice daily, and more often if needed. You may need to add fresh litter after scooping to replace the amount that was lost.
It is also recommended to thoroughly wash the litter box with an unscented dish soap and hot water at least once per week. We hope these tips will help to keep your carpets clean and your home free of cat urine odors!