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Ariel doesn't know how to use her litterbox!

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Uh oh... I think we have a problem.

When Ariel first came to me, her paw was very badly injured. Up until her paw fully healed, I didn't buy the usual cat litter for her. Instead, she'd been using a cardboard box (with one side cut open) lined with newspaper as a toilet. Aside from the first few days, she did not have any accidents.

Now that her paw has fully healed, I bought Breeder Select cat litter, and a small tub. Unfortunately I think she doesn't know how to use it!

Earlier, she looked at me and mewed. I figured she wanted to use the toilet, so I brought her to the tub and put her inside. She just lay on the pellets for a while and then jumped out. So I brought her old cardboard box down, lay some newspaper on it and put some of the pellets inside, and in she went to do her business.

When she was done, I put the same newspaper and pellets into the new tub, hoping that she will smell it the next time she needed to go and figure that that's her toilet. Well, I don't think its working. She's giving me the "I gotta go!" mews again... And she still thinks the tub contains toys!

Any advice?

This is what the clueless little twit is doing right now:


post #2 of 10
I don't know if you can get "Kitten Attract" cat litter there. But the closer the litter feels to real dirt, the more likely the cat is to know to use it.

However, with the sore paw, she may be a little slow.
post #3 of 10
Try to make a slow transition from the familiar WC setting to the new one:
First - locate the cardboard box with newspaper as is inside the plastic litter box.
After she's been using this consistently for a few days - add a few grains of the designated litter.
After a couple of days of continuous consistent use - add a little more litter and start cutting out pieces of the cardboard box and newspaper.
Continue this process till all evidence of the cardboard & newspaper is removed.
This ought to work: if the paw injury is still bothering her the time elapsing during the process will allow her to finish healing and - as we know - for a radical change (and for kitty litter box venue and setup are cardinal) one tiny step at a time is best!
post #4 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by lazy View Post
Try to make a slow transition from the familiar WC setting to the new one:
First - locate the cardboard box with newspaper as is inside the plastic litter box.
After she's been using this consistently for a few days - add a few grains of the designated litter.
After a couple of days of continuous consistent use - add a little more litter and start cutting out pieces of the cardboard box and newspaper.
Continue this process till all evidence of the cardboard & newspaper is removed.
This ought to work: if the paw injury is still bothering her the time elapsing during the process will allow her to finish healing and - as we know - for a radical change (and for kitty litter box venue and setup are cardinal) one tiny step at a time is best!
Good advice! I agree. If needed, start ripping up the newspaper into smaller and smaller pieces. Once she gets used to using that, maybe try adding Carefresh increasingly until it's 100% Carefresh. Then, progressively add more and more of the litter you're planning to use with her and at the same time, decreasing the amount of Carefresh. It might take a while, but totally worth it. Good luck!
post #5 of 10
I think Breeder Select is the same as our Breeders Choice litter, maybe she just doesn't like it.
I tried using it with my Demetri when he first came home as it was similar (but not the same) to what the breeder had used, but he chose to use the box with regular clay litter every time.
post #6 of 10
There's also a litter called "Yesterday's News" that's shredded paper. You could get that, then gradually over the next month or so increase the amount of regular litter you're using while decreasing the amount of the shredded paper you're using.

She's a cute little clueless twit, though!!
post #7 of 10
If kittens are not used to using the pellet litter, they will not know its litter. I'd switch to a soft feeling clumping litter or some of the Cat Attract litter on the news paper for now. Then GRADUALLY switch over to pellet litter. Since she likes the newspaper, maybe Yesterday's News would be better.

We are using the wood stove pellets for litter and they do fine with it. But it took me about 2 weeks to change them over from normal clumping litter. I just added some of the pellets in at first, then as you scoop, you add another 1/2 - 1 cup of pellets till its all pellets.
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks everyone! I followed the advice to make a very gradual switch. So far... success! Ariel is now using the litterbox with just the pellets inside

I can't use shredded newspaper though, she thinks those are toys and flings them around the room with great glee.

Yesterday's News sounds like a cool product, unfortunately we don't have it here in Singapore. I have also never seen Cat Attract being sold anywhere here. No matter though, she's using her litterbox like the clever little girl she is
post #9 of 10
I'm glad she figured it out! Good clever kitty!
post #10 of 10
Aw, what a good little girl.
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