How to train the cat and kittens to use the litter box

The first step for the cat to use the litter box is to present a clean box, even if it is new. The cat is by nature clean and very private. Your eating area is not close to your garbage disposal area. This is why it is very important to place the litter box in a corner away from your food bowl. The more private the better.

Adult cats

If you adopt an adult cat, the training may be different. But there is a common denominator among all: keep the box clean. A dirty box is not going to attract the cat.

One trick to aid training is to have two boxes next to each other. The cat urinates in one and defecates in the other. This is also successful in situations where there is more than one cat in the house. Each one has its box, keeping its territory.

If you adopt a cat that lived outside the house, used to relieving itself on the ground, teaching it to use the box is a different process. For starters, try following him to his “bathroom” on the patio. Bring some of the dirt or grass you used and put it in the box inside the house. The smell of your outdoor bathroom will help you find your new toilet.

Small cats

By nature, kittens like to relieve themselves on the dirt or in the sand. If you provide them with a litter box, they will gladly relieve themselves there instead of using your rug. If you start teaching your kitten to use the box as soon as you bring him home, in no time he will start to use it consistently. Finding the right box and encouraging him to use it is important, but you don’t have to train a kitten to use his litter box in the same way that you would train a dog to relieve himself outside the home. You don’t need to teach your cat what to do with a litter box – her instinct will usually guide her. What you should do is provide an accessible litter box in acceptable condition.

Method 1 (Buy the supplies)

  1. Choose a large litter box. There are small boxes for small kittens, but these grow so fast that you will have to change the litter box in no time after giving it to him. When changing a litter box, you have to retrain the kitten, so it is best to start with a box that you will be using for a long time.
  • Kittens have no problem getting into large litter boxes as long as one side is low enough for the kitten to enter. If you find a great box but aren’t sure if the kitty will be able to get into it, use a piece of plywood or some other flat material that has good traction to create a small ramp. Secure it to the side of the litter box using duct tape and then remove it when the kitten is old enough to get in without having to use it.
  1. Consider using a closed litter box. Some litter boxes have a cover (or top cover) that surrounds them. The advantage of the closed litter box is that it can prevent enthusiastic kitties who love to kick or dig from flushing out the litter, and it can also reduce odors if the box is in a small room. Some cats also feel protected by the cover.
  • Make sure that the closed litter box is large because cats need enough space to roam comfortably inside. Most cats display a behavior where they need to sniff their feces and then bury them, so the box should have enough space for them to do so.
  • Some cats do not like closed boxes when you initially offer them to them. You can ease the transition by removing the revolving door until they get used to the box.
  1. Buy kitten litter. There are many types of litter to choose from, and many of them are good for most young and adult cats (8 months and older). Choose a litter that is as dust-free as possible, as dust can irritate cats’ lungs. You should keep the following factors in mind when making your choice:
  • Don’t give kittens clumping litter. If they eat it (which they usually do), it will stick to their intestines and cause serious problems.
  • Use unscented litter if possible. Kittens and cats may not like scented litter. If the aroma is overwhelming, they might relieve themselves elsewhere. Additionally, some scents may irritate your nose and eyes or may cause problems for those who are predisposed to respiratory illnesses.
  • Consider using the absorbent litter. Absorbent litter has become a popular choice as it makes it much easier to remove kitten waste. Keep in mind that there is a fear that the cat could get sick from ingesting the absorbent litter, but there is little or no evidence that it can happen.
  • Choose an easily available litter box. Some cats become accustomed to a specific litter box and may not recognize the box as a toilet if it does not contain their usual litter.


  1. Buy a dustpan and drop cloth. The last things you should get ready to teach your kitten to use the litter box are a dustpan to remove debris from the box and a protective cloth to place under the box to prevent scattered litter from staining your home.


Method 2 (Give the kitten the litter box)

  1. Put the box in a quiet place. Don’t put it in a high-traffic area of ​​your home, like the kitchen or hallway. The ideal place for the litter box should be easily accessible, provide plenty of privacy, and be free from sudden noises that may scare your pet.
  • While the laundry room is a popular choice because it is less frequented than other areas in most homes, the sudden noises that a washer or dryer can make when changing cycles could scare the kitten into fear of using the box.
  • The litter box should be in an area where the kitten spends a lot of time. He should be able to see the litter box most of the time so that he can use it if he needs it.
  • Kittens and cats prefer a little privacy. If they don’t, they might begin to relieve themselves behind the couch or in some other hidden corner.
  • If you start training your kitten to use the litter box and then need to move it, do so gradually, a few steps at a time, allowing a few days. Moving the box to a different room overnight could confuse the kitten and lead to accidents around the house. It can also help to put her food bowl where the litter box used to be, as most cats refuse to use the bathroom where they eat.


  1. Put the kitten in the filled litter box. As soon as you take it home, put it in the box so it gets used to the smell of the litter and the feeling it causes. Let him spend a few minutes there, even if he doesn’t want to go to the bathroom the first time. Continue putting the kitten in the box after her meals, upon waking up, or any other time you think she needs to relieve herself. Also, if he crouches somewhere other than the litter box, put him in it right away.
  • Some kittens will immediately understand what the purpose of the litter box is and will not require any additional training to learn how to use it. Others will need you to put them in the litter box up to 10 times a day to discover their purpose.
  • Avoid trying to “show” your kitten the scraping motion that cats use to bury their waste, as it could scare them, so avoid the temptation to grab their paws and help them dig into the litter box until they understand.
  1. Praise him, don’t punish him. As the kitten gets used to the litter box and begins to use it as his bathroom, praise him every time he eliminates by stroking him and making comforting sounds. Don’t discipline him while he’s still in the box or he might start to associate being in the box with punishment.
  2. Provide an adequate number of litter boxes. If possible, have a litter box for each cat in your house, plus an additional one.
  • For example, ideally, a kitten has 2 litter boxes. If you have 3 cats, you should provide them with 4 litter boxes.
  1. 5. Consider using a period of confinement. When a kitten first comes into your home, you can confine it to a small area for the first few weeks. This can help him slowly adjust to his new environment, give him easy access to his litter box, and can help reduce or confine areas where accidents occur.


Method 3 (Keep your kitty comfortable)

  1. Clean the litter every day. Kittens don’t like to relieve themselves in dirty areas. If you don’t change the litter, he might find a cleaner place to relieve himself, like the carpet.
  • To clean the litter box, remove the waste from the box, put it in a small bag, seal it, and throw it in the trash.
  • You can leave a small amount of stool in the litter box (changing it frequently) for the first few weeks. This helps the kitten to recognize the purpose of the box.
  1. Clean the entire litter box frequently. About once a week, you will need to discard the entire contents of the litter box tray and give it a thorough cleaning. When the tray is empty, wash it with a non-hazardous cleaning solution (or warm soapy water), then wash the tray, dry it, and fill it with clean sanitary litter.
  • You may be tempted to leave the absorbent litter on for more than 1 week due to the ease with which cat litter is removed. However, even absorbent litter must be completely disposed of and replaced frequently.
  1. Clean areas where accidents have occurred well. If your kitten or cat goes to the bathroom outside of the litter box, be sure to thoroughly clean the area, removing all traces of urine or feces. This should help reduce the repetition of accidents in the same area.
  2. Consider removing large potted plants from your home. If you find that your kitty uses the soil from your plant pot as a bath, you may need to remove it or cover the soil with aluminum foil when you teach her to use the litter box. Kittens instinctively bury their waste, so they may be drawn to dirt or sandy areas. Make sure the litter box is the only place in the house where she wants to relieve herself.
  3. Feed the kitten on a regular schedule. This will help you predict when you will need to use the litter box. Kittens typically feel the urge to have a bowel movement about 20 minutes after eating. When you think he has the urge to relieve himself, take him to the box and let him climb up.



  • As your kitten grows, you will need to add more litter to the litter tray. By the time your kitten is 6 months old, you should start placing 2 to 3 inches (5 to 8 cm) of litter in the tray.
  • The best thing is that the floor of your house is made of tiles or wood, since this way you can clean the urine.
  • If you have a relatively large house or apartment, you may consider providing multiple litter boxes. This will ensure that your kitty uses a litter box rather than any other area in the house if she has to relieve herself urgently. As your kitty uses the boxes with more confidence, you can gradually begin removing some of them.
  • Change the litter gradually. If you determine that you need to change the type of cat litter you use, try to transition from one litter to another slowly by mixing the new litter with the old, slowly increasing the amount of the “new” litter over a period of time. about 2 weeks.
  • If your kitty seems unsure about using her litter box, make sure she can easily access the litter box or use another type of litter, particularly if the litter is scented.
  • Praise him, as this will reinforce the repetition of the desired good behavior.



  • Make sure your vet checks your new pet to make sure he’s healthy . Some diseases cause kittens and cats to behave differently in relation to the litter box.
  • Feed him canned (wet) food specifically designed for kittens. They become dehydrated more easily than adult cats, which can lead to health and litter box problems.
  • A common reason a kitten relieves itself outside of its litter box is if its owner punished it for using the wrong spot. The kitten may feel insecure about going to the bathroom (especially in an open space) for fear of being punished and becomes sneaky. With this in mind, never punish him for relieving himself in the wrong place, it will only make things worse.

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Written by Sammy

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