What to do if your cat is not using the litter box

No doubt, cats, the feline friends are lovely and sweet creatures, but cleaning their poop is not an easy and pleasant task. Although the cat is a well-behaved animal, sometimes she chooses a different spot in the house for pooping instead of a litter box. You come back from the office after spending a hectic day and see an unpleasant surprise on the floor; it is a predictable task for almost every cat owner.

Cats refuse to use the litter box for various reasons. It may be due to some behavioral changes or some medical issues. There is always a reason behind not using the litter box; it does not mean that you should punish the cat or get revenge, find the cause, and try to solve it.

Here I will discuss the reasons behind not using the litter box and what to do if the cat is not using the litter box.

Why does a cat poop outside the litter box?

Most of the cats stop using the litter box when there is a change in their routine or any issue with the litter box. Some reasons for not using the litter box are listed below:

Health problem

Sometimes due to any health issue, the cat stops using the litter box; for instance, if the cat has diarrhea, then urge of using the litter box is sudden and overwhelming so, a cat cannot reach to the litter box on time and in the result, poops outside the box. It is a temporary problem, but if your cat is still pooping outside without any reason, then it is behavioral changing in the cat.

Behavioral issues

There may be several causes in the changing behavior of the cat, which causes them to stress.

Smelly litter box

Cats have a strong sense of smelling and can sense if a litter box is a little dirty. Cats love cleanliness and often refuse to use the litter box if it is smelly. They often turn up their nose at a litter box if it is not clean and has the smell in it. If your well-trained cat is rejecting the box, it means that you have to clean the litter box or change the litter box with the new one.

Location of the box

Cat is a shy animal naturally and needs privacy when she is doing her business. If you have placed the litter box at the place where a lot of traffic is present, then it might be possible that you can see the cat poop behind the sofa or under your bed.

Change in household

When you change the setting of the house or shift into the new home, then a change in environment or cat’s routine cause stress that leads to the unusual behavior of the cat. This change in behavior may be temporary until your cat gets used to a new situation. In changing the environment, cats get confused and start pooping in the kitchen, under the bed or behind the sofa instead of a litter box.

Newly adopted cat

A recently adopted kitty takes a few weeks or a month to adjust to the new place. If a new cat is not using the litter box, then she may be uncertain about the litter box are does not like to share the litter box with other cats.’

What to do to stop the cat from pooping outside

Keep the litter box clean

It is one of the necessary tasks that you should keep the litter box clean and odor-free. For this purpose, first of all, scoop the clumps from the litter box regularly. Replace the old litter with a new one and scrub the empty litter box with a mild dishwasher and warm water, rinse it with clean water, dry it, and add new fresh litter in it.

Sprinkle some baking soda in the base of the litter box before pouring new litter in it; it will control bad odors and keep the litter box free from harmful bacteria.

Choose the right litter box

Choosing the right litter box is essential. Most of the cats dislike closed litter box because they contained the odors inside them. Choose the one in which your cat feels comfortable and can turn around quickly. Keep in mind that the litter box should provide privacy to the cat.

You can use the top entry litter box for your cat because they are roomy, comfortable to clean and provide complete privacy to your cat for doing their business.

Location of the box

Choose the area which is suitable for your cat, adjust the box on a place that is easily accessible by the cat has minimum traffic, as the cat needs full privacy. If your cat loves to poop in the bathroom, you can adjust the litter box in the bathroom and can add a baby gate for easy access to the litter box.

To provide complete privacy and to keep the litter box out of sight, you can use litter box furniture, it not only controls odors but also provides an elegant look to your house as well as attracts the cat to use the litter box.

Multiple litter boxes for multiple cats

If you have multiple cats, then keep more than one litter box. Cats often dislike sharing the litter box; if you force them, they refuse to use the litter box and poop outside the box. Therefore, try to buy a separate litter box for every cat.

You can also use more than one litter box for a single cat. To provide easy access to the litter box, you can place the litter box in every corner of the house.

Put obstacles to a particular area

If your cat poops in a specific area frequently and you cannot stop her, then you can spray a kitty-safe deterrent in this particular area or lay down some aluminum foil on this place will make this area undesirable for the cat.

The best way to stop cats from pooping in a particular area is to give her food at or near this specific area. Cats do not poop near the place where they feed, so; she will stop pooping there.

Erase the poop immediately

If your cat poops outside the litter box, then immediately remove the poop and clean this area with an enzymatic cleaner. It will remove the scents, and the cat will not find this place ok for pooping.

Final verdict

Cats are well-mannered animals; if they are pooping outside, then definitely there is a reason behind it; you must find the cause and solve it to prevent your cat from doing her business outside the litter box. If you feel that your pet is sick, then immediately visit the vet and ask for some treatment.

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