- If you’re just starting out with a kitten, it’s a good idea to get a shallow litter tray. If it has tall sides, your kitten may not be able to get into it.
- Cats are private creatures so place the tray in a quiet spot so they won’t feel shy in front of anyone standing close by.
- Some cats prefer a tray with a hood. This will give some added privacy.
- Ideally, always use a brand of cat litter that your kitten is used to.
- When cleaning the tray, never use cleaning products containing ammonia. Cat's urine also contains ammonia and should yours get a whiff of it, they may think another cat has used their tray and start avoiding it. This wouldn't be good for other areas in your house!
- When dealing with the litter tray, always wear gloves and wash your hands thoroughly afterwards.
- Keep the litter tray away from areas in the home where people eat and sleep. Cats will scratch the litter after using the tray, which can be unhygienic and noisy
- Keep one litter tray per cat, minimum. If you have 2 cats, have 3 litter trays. This gives both cats options when the need arises!
How to encourage regular use
Place your kitten in their litter after they've eaten. This will get them into the habit of using it. If they do their business, shower them with praise so they know they've done something good.
Remember, your kitten is a proud and clean creature, so clean the tray regularly. Once a day scoop out the poos, and replace the litter as required.
What to do if there's an accident
Cats and kittens don't like to eat where they go to the toilet, so if your kitten chooses a spot in your home outside of the litter tray, try putting their food in that particular spot. If it happens again, remember not to rub their nose in it.
Instead, check you're not cleaning the litter tray with an ammonia based product, which, as mentioned above, can give your pet the impression that someone else is using their private toilet.
Your cat could simply be trying to mark their territory elsewhere. Occasionally you may need to experiment with different litter types; every cat is different, and sometimes they like to change their mind!