Tips For Litter Training Kittens

Litter training kittens takes time and patience. In most cases, the mother cat handles this aspect of kitten care and training, but if the mother cat dies or abandons her litter, human involvement becomes necessary. Even if a kitten is using a litter box, a new home and litter box shape and size confuse young kittens. You may need to help reestablish litter box use once you bring your pet home.

In both cases, humans must step in and handle the duties for toilet training kittens. Skipping this important step in a kitten's development will lead to smelly messes and stubborn stains throughout your entire house.

When potty training kittens, there four things to remember. Most importantly, you must be around at feeding times because that's when litter training kittens takes place.

Choose Kitten-Friendly Supplies

Before it's time for toilet kitten training to begin, usually at five weeks, purchase an shallow litter box. If the sides are too high, the kitten will struggle to climb in and out of the box and be less likely to use it. Avoid covered boxes until regular use of the kitty litter box is occurring.

The kitty litter you choose is just as important. While pine pellet litters are biodegradable, many kittens and cats hate the feel of the large pellets. Choose an unscented, clumping litter. World's Best Cat Litter makes a dust-free, environmentally friendly clumping brand from corn. It is soft on a cat's paws and can even be flushed safely down the toilet. Most cats have no problem using this litter.

Be Around at Feeding Time

Start litter training kittens right after they eat. Once they've eaten their portion of food and had some water, get them to come to the litter box. Have a warm, wet towel handy and wipe their anal area and genitals with the washcloth. A mother cat uses her tongue for litter training kittens, but a washcloth is equally effective.

As soon as you've wiped him, place him in the litter box and start scratching at the litter with your fingers. It won't always work the first time, so be prepared to repeat this a couple times. After that, if the kitten has not gone, don't force the issue. You don't want him to fear the litter box.

Keep an Eye on Your Kittens

During playtime, keep an eye on your kittens. If a kitten has to go to the bathroom, he'll head for a secluded location. Quickly scoop the kitten up and use same techniques for litter training kittens. When a kitten uses the litter box correctly, reward him with a treat and verbal praise. If not, let him return to playing but keep watching him. When it seems like he is trying to find a spot, move him back to the litter box and scratch at the litter with your fingers. Eventually, he'll get the idea.

Don't Punish for Accidents

If you don't catch the kitten in time, move him into the box and scratch at the litter. Most of the time, the kitten begins copying you. Whether it is instinctive or not, the kitten learns that scratching the litter and going to the bathroom go hand in hand.