One Cat, One Litter Box? Two Cats, Two Litter Boxes?
People are constantly complaining about litter box issues so I am taking sometime to get to the bottom of this issue, once and for all! I have a theory that if you have one cat, you need two litter boxes; two cats, three litter boxes; three cats, four litter boxes and so on.
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I blogged about litter box size a few days ago but the number of litter boxes might be an issue your cat needs you to address. Most vets and cat experts will tell you that if you have one cat, one litter box is fine, and if you have more than one cat, you need one litter box for each cat, plus one more. Well, that advice is correct to a point. If your litter boxes are the correct size for your cat and you clean them out regularly, you may only need one box per cat plus one more.
But I have a theory that even if you only have one cat, you might need another litter box. If you think about it, it makes sense. In the wild cats don't eliminate in one place all the time, that would be suicide, all a predator would have to do is hide at the pooping place and wait for Fluffy to come along and then the predator would have an easy snack.
Also, you don't know what could be bothering your cat on any given day, cats are sensitive to their environments - maybe the phone has been ringing too often and the sound is bothering him, so he doesn't want to use his litter box where it is because he's afraid that darned phone is going to ring again and scare him right in the middle of a big poo. Or maybe you are doing some cleaning and you keep walking by his litter box several times a day. Any number of things can make your cat want to go somewhere else.
So by offering your cat a second (or third litter box) you are providing a more natural way to eliminate. A second location gives your cat an alternative if he is feeling anxious or if he is not entirely happy with the first litter box or its location.
Because cats are so particular and like to stay clean, one small, dirty litter box is sure to cause some stress in your cat and stress is the number one cause of peeing outside the box. So when you are placing your litter boxes think about what it might be like for a cat in the wild - would they want to pee close to their food...no, would the want to poop where there are loud, frightening noises...no, would they want to pee while people or other animals walk by...no, would they like a big light shining on them...no.
The litter boxes should be in nice, quiet, locations, and the litter boxes should be big enough for him to turn around and dig around and find the best position for eliminating. I'm going to put my second litter box far away from the first so that Neo has a choice about where he goes. I'll let you know how that goes.
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