HomeLatest ThreadsGreatest ThreadsForums & GroupsMy SubscriptionsMy Posts
DU Home » Latest Threads » Forums & Groups » Main » The DU Lounge (Forum) » So cat lovers, riddle me ...

Wed Nov 27, 2019, 02:21 PM

So cat lovers, riddle me this...

(1) What is the "correct" number of litter boxes, one should have in multi-cat household?

(2) In a multi-cat household, if one cat refuse to use a litter box the others use, and poops on a counter top, what is the way to stop this? My friend had to resort to a litter box on the counter top.

(3) I am going to adopt my first kitty from a friend, and we will be living in a small (600 q ft) 1Br/1Bt apt. She is a sweet little black cat and I love her to death. She will be my only companion. But, she is committing #2. How should I place her litter box, and food / water bowls. My friend says she wants to be in a only cat household, and once there will be fine.

13 replies, 595 views

Reply to this thread

Back to top Alert abuse

Always highlight: 10 newest replies | Replies posted after I mark a forum
Replies to this discussion thread

Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Wed Nov 27, 2019, 02:31 PM

1. Vets recommend one litter box per cat, plus one extra.

The boxes should be in multiple locations around the house, not all together in the same spot.

If a cat isn't using the box, she needs a vet visit to make sure there isn't a medical issue. I had a cat who lived to be 18. He would often poop on the bed. We found out that he had a version of kitty IBS. Medication resolved the issue.

If there is no medical issue but the problem persists, make sure the boxes are located so that the cat can access it from more than one direction. If the box is in a tiny room (closet or bathroom), the cat may feel trapped while using it, especially if another cat likes to attack. Leaving the box in an open room, adjacent to a wall, may help.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Wed Nov 27, 2019, 02:33 PM

2. I am no expert, but here are our experiences

we have 2 cats and 2 litter boxes - one upstairs and one down. I was talking to a friend 2 weeks ago and he said experts say it should be number of cats +1.

2) We have one little kitty who is 12 now. For the longest time she would poop outside of the box. Talking with a friend one day and he said check the litter. So I tried a couple of different litters until we found one that met with her apparent approval about 5 years ago. It was the Costco litter that comes in a huge bag.

As for placement, we have the food in the kitchen and the litter in the bathrooms.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Wed Nov 27, 2019, 02:44 PM

3. I read one time that, in a multi-cat home you should have 1 more

litter box then the number of cats you have. Now if someone has a lot of cats that is impractical so I would say have a few scattered around the house (utility room, bathroom, whatever). What is important is to clean out the litter box frequently and not let the pee and poop pile up. Letting the litter box go to long without being scooped out might cause problems (and I wouldn't blame the cat).

With just one cat all you should really need is one litter box. If she is wanting to be a solo cat that should be fine. I agree with your friend, that problem #2 should go away. Now if the problem should continue, she might be really picky about her litter box I would recommend scooping it out at least once a day. I had a friend who did not do that and every time I would cat sit for her the first thing I always did was to scoop out the litter box which always nasty when I got to my friend's house.

We have a lot of cats in my neighborhood and one of them decided to move in last year (yup he became my freeloading roommate ) and he is an indoor/outdoor cat (only because he used to be an outdoor cat) and I keep his litter box in my utility room. With winter coming on he is indoors far more than outdoor and I think that he will go outside to do his "chores" and them come back in so I don't have to clean out his litter box that often. Although if we get enough really cold days his outdoor time will dwindle now that he has discovered the good life.

Regarding food, I have had to put the food dish on a table to keep the dogs from eating it. I have two water dishes out that both the dog and cat use (one in the kitchen and one by the dog's bed in the living room . What can I say, the dog is bossy and spoiled.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Wed Nov 27, 2019, 02:56 PM

4. I have 4 cats, just one box, but every time one uses the box, I dip it out and wipe the used part

with a wet tissue.

It's easier now that I am retired, but when I worked (I just retired in June), I dipped their box first thing when I got home. I also wake up a couple of times most nights to use the bathroom, and if there's anything there, I dip it out.

I also wash the box out every week.

Just like dogs who learn to hold it while their humans are at work, my cats know I will clear out the box as soon as I am able to, so they hold it if they don't like what they smell in there. Sometimes by the time I get to it more than one cat has done something, but they seem to be willing to wait if it is too much for them to tolerate.

When I come home or get up at night, one or more cats will go to the box and meow, to let me know to hurry and dip it out. Then, as soon as I do, they use it.

If I am not there, a second and even a third will use the box if necessary, but if I am there they will wait in line until I have dipped out the previous cat's contribution!

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Wed Nov 27, 2019, 02:59 PM

5. BTW, my apartment is about 700 sq. feet, on BR, one bathroom, so I do NOT have room

for multiple cat boxes.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Wed Nov 27, 2019, 03:08 PM

6. I've read that you should have one per cat plus one extra, but

that might not be practical, depending on the layout of your house/apartment. I have three cats and two litter boxes because I don't have any more places to put them that wouldn't be gross. The cats are OK with the arrangement and I just have to clean the two boxes more often than I might otherwise.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Wed Nov 27, 2019, 03:25 PM

7. Officially, there should be one more than the amount of cats.

That being said, I have two boxes for four cats, and that seems to work with their personalities - two are sisters and tend to share everything with no problems.
The very elderly (we think she's near 18) Princess had a bout of pooping on the counters until we put a box next to the edge of the counter on a side table. I think it might have been due to a stroke or something else that caused her to decide she only wanted to live in a small, warm, confined 4x1.5 counter location where she could see everyone, keep the other cats from coming near her - and more importantly, be near food and water. She did this for two months; as soon as she stopped living exclusively on the counter, we started migrating the litter box back down to the floor, and she began sharing space with the other cats again.
So, pooping on the counters may be situational (Litter box revolution) or there may be something physically wrong.

Haele

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Wed Nov 27, 2019, 03:26 PM

8. Try Cat Attract. It's heavy, so I hate lugging it around,

But it does work with some cats.

This would be my advice AFTER youíve followed othersí suggestions about the number of boxes and frequency of scooping and cleaning.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Wed Nov 27, 2019, 09:33 PM

9. I have 17cats who use 3litterboxes, so there's no hard and fast rule. Usually, a poop is a

Signal that kitty doesn't feel confident and uses the poop as a way to assert itself.

When you bring kitty home, put it in the bathroom...remove all breakables...bring food and water bowls there. Kitty should use the box for everything. A large dog cage is best, but doubt you have that. Keep kitty alone there for about 3 days, then let kitty roam around, but put it back periodically for food and potty. Kitty should get the message and be ready to be let out.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Wed Nov 27, 2019, 10:22 PM

10. We are a 2 cat household with 3 litter boxes

Our neutered male cat uses the litter box with no problems. Our spayed female cat is the one that has litter box problems. We do not have any covered litter boxes and neither of our cats are declawed. She is very particular about how clean the boxes are and what type of litter she uses.

I really liked the Fresh Step non clumping litter because I didn't have to chisel the bottom of the pans. Not only did Fresh Step starting adding toxic Febreze to their litter but our female cat disagrees with me about this particular litter.

We buy Paws Happy Life clumping cat litter now and she is very happy with it. I hate it because when I do a deep clean once a week, I have to chisel the bottom of the pans. In between the once a week deep clean, I scoop all the poopies and clumped urine daily.

It all depends on the cat. Some like covered boxes, others do not. Some cats aren't particular about what type of kitty litter they use and others will protest that they don't like this type. A lot of cats have pain in their paws due to from being declawed, which results in litter box issues. Others have medical issues that can cause them not to want to use the litter boxes. Sometimes it's a matter of experimenting and finding out what they like or what they don't like.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Thu Nov 28, 2019, 05:04 AM

11. I also have one black kitty, one box.

I found him as a kitten and we've never had any issues, but I change it every day. Sounds like the beginning of a wonderful relationship.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Thu Nov 28, 2019, 06:33 AM

12. 1 litter box per pair of Kittehes

They will know where it is and use it - even my totally wild feral kittens knew to use a litter box without any encouragement from me.

on edit:

I put a plastic trash bag over the litter box, deflate it and pour in a layer of litter. I pour a fresh layer every day (or when needed) and clean up is a snap - just pull the bag out.

I also put the box on a doggie pee pad to catch any stray litter etc. that might be ejected form the box.

I also spray the clean box and floor with an odor eliminator - no cat box smell at all.



Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink


Response to MicaelS (Original post)

Thu Nov 28, 2019, 01:20 PM

13. Six cats, 5 litter boxes

I have very large litter boxes for the cats. Three of them are together in one room. There is another single one in another room and the last is in the bathroom.

They appear to like to poop in a particular box and pee in the others but not always.

There could be an issue with her not liking the litter your friend buys. I personally hate any scented litter because they just spread that smell through out the apartment. Having only one cat gives you the opportunity to try different types of litter and make sure the box is not too small and some cats do not like the covered boxes.

One large box might work for your cat. It's best if you clean it twice a day otherwise two boxes with one in a secluded area for her privacy.

I have a cat drinking fountain and a bowl of water for the cats. Some like one or the other. Wet cat food is best to keep them hydrated especially if you live in a hotter climate. The food/water are best in the kitchen area away from the litter boxes.

One last thing. Some cats prefer to be up high so a cat tree would be great and if she is pooping on a counter it sounds like she prefers a higher place to feel safe.

Reply to this post

Back to top Alert abuse Link here Permalink

Reply to this thread