toilet training your catIf you’ve cleaned out your cat’s litter box a few hundred times already this year, you’ve probably asked yourself, “Isn’t there another way?” Without a doubt, scooping clumps every day can feel pretty tiresome after awhile. While there are some great modern antidotes to this problem, such as “self-cleaning” litter boxes, it may be time to consider the pros and cons of toilet training your cat.

Wait, What?

Yes, you read that right: toilet training your cat is not new, but with contemporary methods and supportive products, it could be your “new normal.”

It’s convenient, swift, and relieves your aching back. Now, you just have to convince Fluffy the toilet is a friend not a foe. The good news is that cats are clever and can absolutely be trained.

The Facts Speak Volumes

Did you know cats who can’t adhere to litter box rules are surrendered at a shockingly high rate? Perhaps if more cats were taught to use the toilet, adoption and retention rates would soar.

Cats who are at least 6 months old and are proven champions of the litter box are prime candidates for this endeavor.

Baby Steps

There are kits available online and at pet stores that aim to help your cat learn the basics of potty training. We offer the following tips and tricks to get Fluffy full trained:

  • It can take a few months for your cat to use the toilet with regularity. Remember to stay patient and calm during the learning process.
  • Move their existing litter tray to the bathroom.
  • Lay it down on the floor next to the toilet; over time, gradually raise it until it’s on the same level as the toilet seat.
  • Make sure their tray is level, stable, and secure.
  • If you’re using a kit, like this one from CitiKitty, follow the directions closely and adhere to their graduation markers (only allow Fluffy a larger hole when certain steps are completed).
  • Over time, the space for litter grows smaller and smaller; soon, Fluffy should be depositing waste directly into the toilet.
  • Don’t rush when toilet training your cat.
  • Offer lots of praise and encouragement.
  • Keep your bathroom door open and the lid up to accommodate Fluffy when you’re not home.
  • Cats are agile, but they can still find themselves inside the toilet bowl if they aren’t careful. Watch for any signs of fear or anxiety when it comes to using the toilet.

Toilet Training Your Cat

A few final pointers regarding toilet training your cat:

  • Continue to monitor your cat’s bathroom habits. Scooping litter helps you know roughly how much waste your cat makes, so don’t forget to keep a count in the toilet!
  • As your cat ages, keep a close eye on their posture on the toilet. Balance and agility may start to wane in their senior years.
  • Don’t get rid of the litter box. Some cats decide they want to go back to using it, either in place of the toilet or in addition to it.

Have questions about toilet training your cat? Please let us know! The team at Beverly Hills Veterinary Associates is always here for you!