If you have a cat who’s going outside the litter box, chances are there’s are reason why he or she is doing it. One of the main reasons a cat might not go in his or her litter box is because it’s dirty. As with all pets, some cats have more of a tolerance for a dirty litter box versus others. There are certain cats who won’t dream of going in the litter box if there’s so much as one poop in there!
Look it at from your own perspective…. a dirty litter box is the equivalent of a dirty bathroom with toilet paper everywhere and unflushed toilets. Who want’s that!? Another issue is the multi-cat household. Having too few litter boxes can present a problem for finicky cats – to them it’s the same as using a dirty public bathroom.
So, how often should you change your cat’s litter?
To start, be sure you have at least one litter box per cat in your household. Then, make sure you scoop the litter in each box at least twice a day. While it’s virtually impossible for you to follow your cat around and clean up as they go, it’s helpful to do the scooping as soon after they finish their business as you can. A self cleaning litter box that uses a sensor to tell when a cat has entered and exited the box is a great solution for the fussiest of cats, because it eliminates the waste as soon as the cat has left. A self cleaning litter box might not be the best solution for a timid cat, as the noise from the mechanism might scare them off.
In addition to daily scooping, it’s important to change the litter completely twice per week (for non clumping) and at least twice a month for clumping. Be sure to give the litter box a good wash with soap and water – taking it out to the yard and washing it down with a hose works well. Just be sure to have a backup litter box in the house while your cleaning.
Finally, its important to replace your plastic litter box each year, as the cat scratching tends to create places in the box for odors and bacteria to hide, which will result in a stinky litter box that your cat won’t want to use.