I hate litterboxes. They are smelly, messy, and high maintenance. Why can’t cats just use the toilet? OK, so I do know a few cats that have been trained to use the toilet, but until I have much more time in my life that’s not going to happen in my house. Plus the thought of cat poop floating in the toilet just waiting for my dog to find it and eat it is really kind of disgusting. Pecabo, my middle child, doesn’t like litterboxes either. She insists on pooping on the floor right next to the box. This isn’t really a problem because I leave a boot tray under the box and she usually manages to hit it, but it’s more annoying just on principle. I mean, if she goes to all the trouble to go downstairs to the litterbox area, why not use the box? Especially since after pooping in the boot tray, she then gets in the box and scoops the litter out of the box onto the poop. She pees in the box just fine (thank goodness!). I have three litterboxes in different locations. She poops next to each and every one. Dirty, clean, scented or unscented litter, clay or wheat-based, deep or shallow, covered or not. I scoop my three boxes daily and empty and wash them monthly. I don’t use any scented cleaners, just hot water and soap. But there is something about litterboxes that makes Pecabo want to poop on the floor. For Pete’s sake, I’m a veterinarian, and not only that, a CAT veterinarian! I know more about cats and cat behaviour than 99.9% of the population. I have helped countless clients solve their kitty-pooping problems over the years. Some have health issues, while others are a husbandry thing (no one likes to clean litterboxes, but if you have indoor cats, you really should try to clean them daily). Some problems are caused by a dislike for the litter, or a preference for one over another. Even things like noise from the air conditioner or furnace, too much foot traffic, or not enough privacy near the litterbox can cause a once-happy cat to avoid his or her duty. So why can’t I fix my own cat? I think I’m going to try kitty diapers next.
Jun 08 2012