Can You Really Toilet Train A Cat?
Toilet training your cat is a simpler task than you may believe. A number of strategies can be utilized for training your cat to use the toilet, and you can even purchase items that will assist you in toilet training a cat.
The Advantages Of Cat Toilet Training:
Teaching your beloved cat to utilize the toilet can hold a number of benefits for any cat owner. The greatest benefit is the elimination of any odors associated with a litter box. Cat litter also can get expensive and no one really enjoys cleaning out the litter box. After toilet training your cat, you shouldn’t need to buy cat litter again. You can also ditch any litter box tools that you have on hand, they won’t be needed any more either
Litter boxes have to be cleaned or replaced regularly or they will end up smelling awful. Once you get your cat trained to use the toilet, the water masks the majority of the offending odors. All you need to do is flush, an activity much simpler and easier than cleaning up a litter box. Another benefit will arise when you have a friend or family member check in on your pet for those times that you aren’t going to be around. No longer will they need to even check the litter box, they just need to go into the bathroom and flush. There only other task is to make sure there is fresh food and water. You have taken the ick factor out of checking in on your cat.
Do-It-Yourself Cat Toilet Training
Training your kitten to use the toilet depends entirely on their personality and your persistence. If you have a cat that enjoys being applauded and rewarded, you will have an easier time than trying to train a belligerent pet. Because all pets are different and have different personalities you will need to adjust your tactics at times. Patience is required and, even if you have a cooperative pet, you will need 2-3 weeks to fully train your cat.
Cat toilet training generally starts by slowly moving the litter closer to the toilet, making your cat more comfortable in that room. Eventually you will place the litter box in the toilet bowl and leaving it there most of the time. Don’t be too hasty in moving the litter box into the bathroom, it make take 3-6 days just to get the cat comfortable with the room.
The entire training process needs to be a gradual process that reinforces the idea that your cat should us the litter box wherever it is placed. It may be a 2 week project to get the cat to use the toilet after you have place the litter box in it, you will need to be supportive and patient. Don’t get frustrated if you have to repeat some steps, this is brand new behavior for your cat.
Basic Cat Toilet Training Steps
1.Gradually begin to move your cat’s litter box towards the bathroom. Make sure they are comfortable in any area that you place the box in, this will help when you finally move the box into the bathroom.
- Begin raising up the litter box by placing it on non-slip items like a box with a towel on it. Let the cat get comfortable with the height for a few days before raising it again. Make sure that there is a step or two that the cat can use to get to the next level. Similar to moving the box into the bathroom in the first place, make sure your cat is comfortable with the height. Your patience will be tested with this step but by using positive reinforcement you will be able to soothe your cat and get them to understand what is expected of them. After a week or so you should have the litter box level to the height of the toilet bowl. Make sure that you always have the lid up and the seat down on the toilet, this will be the position that the cat will use when they finally start using the toilet.
- Place the litter box on the open toilet. You can leave the stairs that you create for each level of height that you added, but after a while your cat will probably just jump up onto the toilet seat. If necessary, place your cat in the litter box and pet them while talking low and soft to them.
- This is the step that may involve you buying a product designed for holding a litter box over the toilet. There is a wide variety of bowls and trays that are designed to fit snugly inside the bowl even with the extra weight of your cat. You will still be using kitty litter at this step but you can buy litter that is flushable. You should get rid of the old litter box so that the cat doesn’t try to use it.
- As your cat begins to get used to the litter box inside of the toilet you will want to pay close attention to where the paws are placed. You will want your cat to have all four paws on the toilet rim or seat, forcing them to squat in a position that will allow them to use the toilet. Out of habit your cat will probably have at least two paws in the litter and you will need to change that behavior by rewarding them when their paws are in the proper position.
- It’s natural for cats to scratch in their litter box to try and cover up any odors. Cats are finicky about cleanliness and they will try to hide any smells that they don’t like. Make sure that your toilet is clean and odor free when you are training your cat to use it, they make try to scratch to water out of habit. Using flushable cat litter during training helps you keep the bowl clean and helps to keep your cat from scratching and sending litter all over the place.
- If you notice that your cat has stopped using the toilet bowl you may need to back up a few steps and start over. Check the water level in the toilet bowl to make sure it is high enough to cover any smells but not too high that it would be touching the cat.
- Once your cat has become comfortable using the toilet it is important that you keep it clean and that the lid is always up. Make sure that the door is always open and that your cat will always have access to the toilet.
Products To Help You Toilet Train Your Cat
You will probably be surprised at the number of products available to help you toilet train your cat. You can find a tray that is designed to fit inside the bowl that allows you to use flushable litter while your cat gets used to the toilet. Make sure that the items you buy are sturdy and strong enough to support the weight of your pet. It’s also important that the tray or box that you add to the toilet bowl fits firmly, your cat will be walking on it, scratching the litter and sitting on it. This is not the time to have a lose box fall into the water.
You can find toilet training kits and supplies at almost every discount store, pet store and online retailer such as Amazon.
The Disadvantages In Toilet Training Your Cat
There are some cat owners who don’t approve of a cat using a toilet. They feel that there are dangers for the pet because the bowl and seat can be slippery, causing the cat to fall. Some think that because a cat has a normal instinct to cover their smell will lead to the cat scratching at the water and sending waste all over the bathroom.
Another concern is that you won’t always be able to monitor your cat’s urine for any signs of illness. You can sometimes smell a urinary tract infection when your cat uses a litter box but you may miss that sign if the water in the toilet masks the smell.
Should you toilet train your cat? Obviously it is a decision that requires a lot of effort on your part. Most vets are fine with it and many pet owners have loved the convenience of not having to mess with a litter box any more.