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Healthy Cats

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Controlling Cat Litter Box Odor

Does the Type of Box Matter? continued...

Cats are fastidious, and don’t want to step or dig in already soiled areas. Many people cut down one side of a large, plastic storage tub to get a larger box.

And avoid covered boxes. Most cats don’t like them, and they can trap odors inside, making it unpleasant for your pet to enter.

Many cats also don’t like plastic liners, which can snare cat’s claws when they dig. This also allows urine to seep under the liner, where it won’t be absorbed by the litter and can cause odors.

As for self-cleaning litter boxes, it depends. Some cats, especially skittish and large cats, may dislike them. But if your cat doesn’t mind, it’s an option for people who are gone for long periods.

Location, Location, Location, and Numbers

The rule is one litter box per cat, plus one. So if you have one cat, you need two boxes. If you have four cats, you need five boxes.

Keep the boxes in different locations in your home. If a cat is on the third floor, and the box is in the basement, he may decide not to make the long trek.

Also, choose the right spots for your litter boxes. Don’t put a box in a small, enclosed area, like a tiny bathroom or closet, which will concentrate litter box odors. A larger, well-ventilated area is best. But it needs to be in a quiet, low-traffic area, away from your cat’s food, other pets, and anything that can startle or scare your cat while he’s using the box.

Yes, it takes a daily effort on your part to keep litter box odors at bay. But the result will be a happier cat and a better-smelling home.

WebMD Veterinary Reference

Reviewed by Amy Flowers, DVM on September 29, 2014
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