6 Common Mistakes When Potty Training Kittens

There are a whole host of mistakes one can make while potty training kittens. Raising kittens is not an easy task, especially if the kitten was not given the opportunity to learn from his mother. Usually with litter training, kittens learn by imitating their mother. However, the owner can accomplish kitten training as well.

Some of the common mistakes to avoid are:

Mistake #1: Difficult to Use Litter Box

Some owners get a litter box that does not suit a kitten. Either the litter box has too high of walls for the kitten to jump in or does not have enough room for the kitten to turn around.

Mistake #2: Too Many Scents

A kitten is sensitive to odors. Do not use scented litter boxes or scented litter. These may be pleasant for the owner but not for the kitten. Too many scents may actually confuse the kitten and result in "potty" accidents. Be especially careful in using cleaners, such as Clorox or ones containing ammonia, since they have a similar scent to urine and may cause the kitten to urinate in the newly cleaned area. The kitten may be confused as to thinking that this is where he is to eliminate or may try to re-mark his territory.

Mistake #3: Not Confining the Kitten

Allowing the kitten full run of the house gives him too many places to eliminate and can be distracting to him. Confine him to a small room (where you can monitor him) with his litter box, fresh water and toys. This is important, especially if he is not getting the idea of using a litter box.

Mistake #4: Not Keeping the Litter Box Clean

Cats and kittens will not use heavily soiled litter boxes. Though it is advisable to allow the scent of urine to remain in the litter box while training the kitten that the litter box is the place to go, the litter box should not be heavily soiled, especially since this can create health issues.

Mistake #5: The Location of the Litter Box

Locate the litter box in a low traffic area since cats and kittens prefer privacy. A corner of a room is usually the best place. Do not keep re-locating the litter box either. Do not place the water and food bowls next to the litter box. If it is a large home or if there are many kittens and cats, it is advisable to have more than one litter box in various areas of the home.

Mistake #6: Punishing Accidents

Remember when litter training kittens, there are bound to be some accidents. Do not punish the kitten with a raised voice or by rubbing his nose in the accident. This will only instill fear. Tell him "No" in an unhappy voice but do not yell. Observing the kitten can prevent accidents. Whenever he scratches the floor with his paw, goes to a corner or begins to squat, quickly pick him up and place him in the litter box. After he has gone, praise him. Usually kittens have to eliminate after eating and after awaking from a nap so it is good time to take him to visit the litter box at these times.