Solving Your Cat’s Litterbox Woes

Solving Your Cat’s Litterbox Woes

Is your cat avoiding her litterbox? While most kitties are very good about using their litterboxes, sometimes our feline friends do develop an aversion to their private bathrooms. This can be very frustrating for pet owners! There are solutions for this behavior, but in order to get Fluffy to start using her box again, you’ll need to figure out why she stopped using it in the first place. Below, a Fox Chapel, PA vet lists some possible reasons for your cat’s litterbox issues.

Medical Issues

First and foremost, have your vet examine Fluffy to determine if she has a medical problem. If your kitty gets the all-clear, you’ll be able to look at other possible reasons for her behavior.


Cats like to have some privacy when they’re doing their business. Don’t put the litterbox in a busy area. You’ll also want to avoid putting Fluffy’s powder room in a spot that is drafty and/or hard to reach. Experiment a bit: get a few extra boxes, and put them in different locations.

Dirty Bathroom

Kitties hate dirty litterboxes! We recommend scooping Fluffy’s litterbox out every day, and changing it completely about once a week.

Litter Preferences

Sometime cats have preferences for specific types of litter. One kitty may like clay litter, while another may prefer a clumping formula. Try a few different options, to see if that helps.

Box Design

Is your cat a senior? If so, the walls of her box may be too high for her to climb over. Try a litterbox with lower sides.


Do you have more than one kitty? Cats don’t like to share bathrooms. You’ll need at least one box per furball, with at least one extra.


Sometimes fear or anxiety can cause cats to avoid their litterboxes. Perhaps something happened to Fluffy that made her frightened of her bathroom. This, too, can be overcome, though it will take time and patience.

Consult a professional cat behaviorist for specific advice. Never punish your furball for not using her litterbox. This could make her even more anxious, and may make matters worse! Instead, reward your feline friend when she does use her box.

Do you have questions or concerns about your cat’s health? We can help! Please call us here at River Valley Veterinary Hospital, serving the Fox Chapel, PA area, to make an appointment with a veterinarian.

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