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Discussion in 'Cat Training and Behaviour' started by catmadclaire, Dec 8, 2018.


  1. catmadclaire

    catmadclaire PetForums Member

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    So, we moved house 5 months ago now and our two cats who are 9 had never really used a litter tray other than when they were kittens, but as we needed to keep them in for a week we had to get one. But it seems as though they have got used to it or just being lazy as they refuse to go to the toilet outside. We've tried it all and when we took the tray away completely they both pooed indoors on the floor which mortified me slightly so the tray is now back, and I am at my wits end emptying it about 4 times a day, any advice please? Surely they're not too old to be going outside now. The garden is a lot bigger and their are a lot of other cats about, but we've found them a great little spot near the catflap and put their litter and poos and wees in it etc... But it's not happening, so really in need of advice as I can't have them pooing on the floor as I have an inquisitive three year old that I do not want going anywhere near it obviously. Thanks.
     
  2. lea247

    lea247 PetForums VIP

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    It might be that your two are very wary of going out because of all the other cats around. The existing neighbourhood cats will probably already have their territory sorted, so your two could change things for them. Regardless of where a cat usually toilets, they need to have access to an indoor litter tray at all times. In the case of your two, they would need three trays (one each plus one). It is much better for you to be able to monitor their toilet habits too, so if they are ever ill you can pick up on it and act accordingly.

    Have you considered cat proofing your garden? That way, your two will have their own territory and won't be getting in to any fights with other cats.

    Emptying a tray 4 times a day for two cats, does seem a little much to me - although I have only ever had one! What do you feed them? They should ideally be fed wet food, that is grain, sugar and vegetable free (these ingredients can't be digested by cats so will just pass through their system), or raw food.
     
  3. catmadclaire

    catmadclaire PetForums Member

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    Thanks for the reply. We can't cat proof the garden unfortunately as it's so large and we rent it's a pretty wild garden so not a lot we can do with it. They are on wet food and have a good diet. I just like to clean the tray as soon as they do their business as can't bear it being dirty.
    But I also would like them to be doing their business outside like they used to.
     
  4. ChaosCat

    ChaosCat PetForums VIP

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    There’s nothing much you can do about it. As long as they don’t feel comfortable with doing their business outside they will do so inside, tray or not.
    Actually there should always be trays available inside also as there can always be reasons why a cat wants to poo or pee inside rather at a certain moment. With a good litter the smell is minimal.
     
  5. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    @catmadclaire - hi, as the others have said, your cats will toilet outside when they feel ready to. Taking away their indoor litter trays will not force them to go outside against their will, it may just result in them soiling on your floors.

    In any case they would need litter trays indoors for use at night time, or if they are unwell, or the weather is very cold or wet. 9 years old is not old, but I wouldn't expect my 9 year old outdoor cats to manage without indoor litter trays at night.

    Cats feel vulnerable to attack from other cats or predators when they are at their toilet. As there are quite a few cats in your neighbourhood yours may only feel safe to toilet outside if you can make an area for their use only (i.e. no other cats have access)

    As you are not able to cat proof your garden, you could think about erecting some kind of impermanent structure made of wood and wire mesh, perhaps attached to the house and accessed through the back door with a cat flap. Or perhaps freestanding, with a microchip cat flap. And putting the litter trays in there during the day time. It might work. But again you will not be able to force the issue by taking away the indoor litter trays, as to do so will be courting trouble.
     
    #5 chillminx, Dec 9, 2018
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2018
    Mrs Funkin and lea247 like this.
  6. lorilu

    lorilu PetForums VIP

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    Provide your cats with two or three trays for indoor use. Use a clumping litter and just scoop out the pee and poop every day, no need to dump the entire box. Plan to keep the trays permanently and let them decide when they feel safe enough to toilet outside. Litter box duty comes with having cats. :)
     
    chillminx, Mrs Funkin and lea247 like this.
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