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A few questions about litterboxes...

post #1 of 23
Thread Starter 
Question 1: I was planning on having a window perch with a bed on it, and underneath, very tidily, the litterbox and the food and water dishes. That way it wouldnt take up much room and the cat would have everything nearby.
But upon researching, I found that cats will refuse to eat if their food is near their litter box. Is this true?

Question 2: If it is true, how far away is considered "far enough"?

Question 3: Also, I wanted a lidless litterbox. I plan to clean out the poo and clumps daily, and change the entire box ever 2-4 weeks (I haven't decided yet) How bad would a litterboxes smell if I used this system?

Question 4: Since I didnt want a lidded litterbox, I was planning to hang a curtain down from the window perch in order to give the cat some privacy, but not take up that much space. Would this work?

NOTE: I have never had a cat in my life.

Kat
post #2 of 23
The litterbox should be separated from the food and water. And the water should be separated from the food. And the litterbox should be private.

I don't know how far is "far enough". The farther the better, I guess, without getting the litterbox out of sight and out of mind.

Litter won't smell if your cat properly covers his/her "business" and you clean the box before it starts to smell. When it starts to smell it is already past due for cleaning. Cats' sense of smell is better than ours.

I have two large litterboxes for three cats. This is less than the recommendation, but I have found that as long as I keep the litter clean they won't have accidents. The boxes are located in a closet in the cats' room. One of the cats eats in that room and his food bowl is on the other side of the room. There is also a water fountain in that room and it is about six feet from the closet door. The only thing I can smell when I stick my nose in the closet is the faint odor of the litter itself, unless a cat has just used the box, then that smell soon dissipates.
post #3 of 23
Thread Starter 
http://www.petsmart.com/global/produ...=1117405016569

I looked at this and I think that it will suit my needs perfectly. I think I will put it under the window perch, and find another place in my room for the food and water. I think I will put up a curtain just to give a little privacy.

Does this seem okay?
post #4 of 23
On how far to put a litter box from its food, ask yourself this question. If you had to use a litter box and cover your poop and pee, how far from it would you like to eat? It's best to keep both food and litter out of busy areas and as far away from each other that you can. You wouldn't want to eat in your bathroom, and neither do they. The next room would be good.


Cleaning it out every 2 to 4 weeks is probably not the best idea if you want to avoid messing outside the box. Considering I have 2 cats, I am slacking if I clean it once a week. It's also important not to clean it with bleach. That's offensive to your cats nose and eyes. They also can mistake the smell for their own urine and think it's dirty. Use a mild soap and warm water. I would clean your box once a week, but that's just me. Every 2 to 4 weeks and it would probably wreak something horrible.

I don't know how it would take to the curtain being pulled around it. The more easily accesible the better. You don't want any confusion about where the litter box is lest they feel they have to use your carpet!

Hope that helps. And YES they absolutely do not like going to the bathroom where they eat, just like us.

PS. Great questions and thanks for being so thoughtful to your new baby! I hope you enjoy each other!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kathryn9
Question 1: I was planning on having a window perch with a bed on it, and underneath, very tidily, the litterbox and the food and water dishes. That way it wouldnt take up much room and the cat would have everything nearby.
But upon researching, I found that cats will refuse to eat if their food is near their litter box. Is this true?

Question 2: If it is true, how far away is considered "far enough"?

Question 3: Also, I wanted a lidless litterbox. I plan to clean out the poo and clumps daily, and change the entire box ever 2-4 weeks (I haven't decided yet) How bad would a litterboxes smell if I used this system?

Question 4: Since I didnt want a lidded litterbox, I was planning to hang a curtain down from the window perch in order to give the cat some privacy, but not take up that much space. Would this work?

NOTE: I have never had a cat in my life.

Kat
post #5 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kathryn9
http://www.petsmart.com/global/produ...=1117405016569

I looked at this and I think that it will suit my needs perfectly. I think I will put it under the window perch, and find another place in my room for the food and water. I think I will put up a curtain just to give a little privacy.

Does this seem okay?
Seems like a nice litter box to me! If you're interested, cats LOVE flowing water. It's certainly not necessary, but if it suited you and your budget, they adore those electric water dishes. You can fill the resivoir where the water will last longer and it just comes out a spout to keep the water from becoming stagnet. Just a thought. My cats love it.
post #6 of 23
Thread Starter 
I know some people with a cat that leave their bathroom sink running all the time. Just a steady drip, drip... so the cat can drink the drips and entertain itself. Would that work? And if it does, then I can keep the food in the bathroom as well and that way it would be far away from the litter box.

Just clarifying the cleaning out thing.

After the cat uses the bathroom, 25 minutes later, the rake comes through the litter and scoops the litter clumps and the poo into a small containor. I could clean out the containor weekly, but only change ALL of the litter in the pan every 2-4 weeks.

If this still doesnt sound ok, then please tell me.
post #7 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kathryn9
I know some people with a cat that leave their bathroom sink running all the time.
You'd be shocked at how that will affect your water bill (assuming you pay for your water.) I think a better idea is a pet fountain.
post #8 of 23
Thread Starter 
Would just a plain old dish full of water work?
post #9 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kathryn9
Would just a plain old dish full of water work?
Yeah, that will work. Like I said, it's not necessary, just kind of a luxioury for the cat, lol. I used to keep my tub faucet dripping before I got the running water dish, lol. And I didn't pay for my water. LOL.
post #10 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kathryn9
I know some people with a cat that leave their bathroom sink running all the time. Just a steady drip, drip... so the cat can drink the drips and entertain itself. Would that work? And if it does, then I can keep the food in the bathroom as well and that way it would be far away from the litter box.

Just clarifying the cleaning out thing.

After the cat uses the bathroom, 25 minutes later, the rake comes through the litter and scoops the litter clumps and the poo into a small containor. I could clean out the containor weekly, but only change ALL of the litter in the pan every 2-4 weeks.

If this still doesnt sound ok, then please tell me.
I personally wouldn't wait that long, but I have two cats. Now, if you're interested in not spending too much time cleaning the litter box, there is a (much) more expensive litter out there. The crystal kind. It claims to only need to be changed completely once a month. The crystals soak up the urine which is generally the problem with dirty litter boxes, because the urine sits in there and when you change it, if you've waited too long, you'll smell an unbelievable amonia odor. I've had to put my shirt over my mouth and nose before. It takes your breath away, literally.

You can test it out and see after 2 weeks how the box smells. Trial and error wont kill anyone. I know what a pain managing the litter box can be, so just give it a try and see how it does. But I wouldn't wait longer than 2 weeks.

Hope that helps.
post #11 of 23
Actually that's about what I do with my cats. Using a clumping litter like World's Best (which is a little $$ but more earth friendly) or Fresh step etc most of the pee gets cleaned up. I clean out waste once-twice a day and the whole thing about once a month. I'm probably less meticulous than most others.

I also don't keep my food and litter in completely different rooms, they are just across the room from each other.

Some of the answers to your questions aren't absolute, they may depend on your cats. My cats like their enclosed litter box, but I know other people whose cats don't. It's a good idea to try and head off any problems, but also give yourself some leeway to try different things if it doesn't work the first time.
post #12 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kathryn9
Question 1: I was planning on having a window perch with a bed on it, and underneath, very tidily, the litterbox and the food and water dishes. That way it wouldnt take up much room and the cat would have everything nearby.
But upon researching, I found that cats will refuse to eat if their food is near their litter box. Is this true?

Question 2: If it is true, how far away is considered "far enough"?

Question 3: Also, I wanted a lidless litterbox. I plan to clean out the poo and clumps daily, and change the entire box ever 2-4 weeks (I haven't decided yet) How bad would a litterboxes smell if I used this system?

Question 4: Since I didnt want a lidded litterbox, I was planning to hang a curtain down from the window perch in order to give the cat some privacy, but not take up that much space. Would this work?

NOTE: I have never had a cat in my life.

Kat
1. Some cats are very particular about their food/litter placement. I'm sure you don't want to eat next to a toilet right? They probably don't either. As far as the window perch, I would not put the food/water dishes under it. The dust/fur from the perch can fall into their water/food.

2. I would place the litter box in one corner of the room, or at least 4-5 feet from the food area.

3. Obviously it's going to smell since you won't have a hood to mask it. That said, the smell could vary depending on what type of food the cat eats and what type of litter you use. I find that cats who eat dry food stink the most. Again, that is from my personal experience.

4. Hanging a curtain might not be a good idea. Some cats like to "cover" their poop by digging outside of the box. In doing so, he/she might grab onto the curtain and get tangled or pull the curtain down. If you want to give your cat privacy, you can get a screen to place around it. The screen looks like a room divider (often used in asian homes).
post #13 of 23
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the help guys!

Ok. Lets see if this plan will work.

Window perch. Under it, the self cleaning litter box. After some experimentation I will find out how often to clean the litterbox. As stated in the beginning, 2-4 weeks. LOL. Food and water will be kept downstairs in the kitchen. No curtain, but perhaps the screen.

Is this fine?
post #14 of 23
I would also add another litter box downstairs. I would put the screen by the litter boxes. Unless, your cat wants the privacy when he/she eats.
post #15 of 23
Thread Starter 
All of my friends with cats only have one. Thats odd.
post #16 of 23
Well, that's their personal preference. But just out of convenience for the cat, I would put one on each floor.
post #17 of 23
Thread Starter 
Ok.
post #18 of 23
I currently have 6 litter boxes...divided up among my house. of course i have alot more cats than just one we deep clean once a month, fully change once every two weeks, and scoop litter every single day sometimes once sometimes twice.

I also have food in diffrent places...of course again I have alot more cats than one in the living room, we have the food dishes on a bookshelf above the boxes..no one minds it there. water dish is across the room.

We have water and food ont he kitchen counters..one on each end. and we have them in the bed room as well..

of course this house is a cat house we are owned.
post #19 of 23
I use scoopable litter in a covered litterbox in the bathroom. Two cats to one litterbox. I try to scoop daily, but sometimes miss a day. I totally empty more than every two weeks usually. You will notice lots of extra little crumbs in with the litter. And I would guess the poo collector will need to be emptied more often than once a week, since that is where all the stink is at! But as was said, trial and error will let you know.

My kits track quite a bit of litter around the bathroom where the litterbox is located. I have a little rug in front of the box, but still end up with crumbs on the windowsill, etc. I think that is the best reason to keep food and water in the kitchen, as you said, away from the litter. Although, as posted, some people do fine with separating the two within one room.

You are going to have so much fun with your new cat. Have you decided where to get the cat? I foster kittens, and highly recommend kittens hand raised in a family home. That way they are extra social and friendly.
post #20 of 23
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kathryn9
Thanks for all the help guys!

Ok. Lets see if this plan will work.

Window perch. Under it, the self cleaning litter box. After some experimentation I will find out how often to clean the litterbox. As stated in the beginning, 2-4 weeks. LOL. Food and water will be kept downstairs in the kitchen. No curtain, but perhaps the screen.

Is this fine?
Sounds great to me! LOL Let us know how everything goes and don't hesitate to ask any questions even if you think it's dumb!
post #21 of 23
I usually scoop every day, change it once a week, and wash it once every 2 weeks. Well ok I dont change it every week, sometimes I go a week and three days or so because It doesnt need to be changed :P
post #22 of 23
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the help. I have changed my plan once again, but I dont want to bore you with the details. LOL
post #23 of 23
And don't use any Lysol in the litterbox area.
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