Cat litter box problems can be a cause of concern for many cat owners. A cat owner may become frustrated by cats that are urinating or defecating outside the litter box.
If the cat litter becomes too dirty, the cat may suddenly refuse to use the litter box. Some cats are very choosy about the cleanliness of the litter.
This resistance to using a dirty litter box usually can be resolved by changing the cat litter more frequently. Sometimes, a cat will refuse to use a litter box if the cat owner has changed the type of litter.
Some cats will refuse to use the litter box if another cat has used it. This can be a common reaction to being in a house with multiple cats or if a new cat is introduced. Adding more litter boxes in different areas of the house may solve this problem.
Sudden refusal to use the litter box could be a sign of a urinary tract infection. Sudden changes in behavior such as a loss of litter box training should be reported to the veterinarian.
Straining to urinate, producing very little urine, crying while urinating, and blood in the urine are other signs of urinary tract infections. Since urinary tract infections can be dangerous for cats, cats showing any of the signs should be taken to be examined by a veterinarian.
Less commonly, the cat may defecate in the bathtub. Reasons that a cat may defecate in the bathtub include illness, a lack of access to the litter box, or if the litter box is dirty. If a cat develops a habit of defecating in the bathtub, the cat owner may want to try keeping a small amount of water in the bathtub.
A cat may refuse to use the litter box if it is close to their food dish or in a busy area of the home. Moving the litter box to a quiet area in the home away from any food dishes may solve this problem. If the litter boxes placed in a room with the door, the door should be propped open enough to allow the cat to always have access to the litter box.
Cat urine spraying is often territorial behavior. Often, cats will spray more if there are multiple cats in the household. Cat spraying is not a litter box problem but a separate behavior.