Why Does My Cat… Not Use the Litterbox?
Litterbox issues are a big concern for many cat owners. Indoor cats, after all, must go somewhere. And when a cat starts peeing or pooping outside his litterbox, it’s something that must be addressed.
Here are some of the causes:
- There’s a medical problem. Your cat may be dealing with a urinary or gastrointestinal condition or some other illness, including kidney disease, thyroid disease or diabetes. It’s best to schedule an appointment with a vet to rule out any medical issues.
- There’s been a major, stressful change in her routine, such as a new baby in the house (human or animal!), a move, a vacation, etc.
- There’s been a seemingly minor change that’s stressed her out, including moving her litterbox or using a new type of litter. Even changing the average depth of the litter in the box can upset a cat and cause her to pee or poo somewhere else.
- There’s a hygiene problem. Cats can be fastidious. If the litterbox isn’t cleaned often enough, some cats will choose to go elsewhere.
- There’s a crowding problem. Some cats simply don’t like to share, and if there are too many cats using the litterbox, they’ll find someplace else.
- There’s a safety problem. Many litterboxes are covered or in a small space, and cats can become afraid of an ambush by aggressor cats in the household when they find themselves trapped in tight spots.
- He’s simply found a place he likes better.
These are just a few of the typical issues, but there are many more possible reasons. And since health-related issues can play such a large role, ruling out medical causes is strongly recommended as a first line of defense.
For more help and information, check out other Vetstreet articles on litterbox issues.
This article was written by a Veterinarian.