Potty Training Cats – Part I

Lola a mixed breed dog with Pets Best Insurance with her human mom Kathy.By Pets Best Insurance Marketing Associate Chryssa Rich

They say you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, but what about cats? Mine are ages 10 and 11, and I recently decided it was time to toilet train them. My complaints probably echo cat owners everywhere:

  • The litter box and its furniture take up a lot of space in my small house
  • I’m constantly shooing my toddler and dog away from it
  • I’m tired of scooping it (who isn’t!)
  • I’m tired of choosing between my house smelling like scented litter or used litter

I considered using a commercial cat potty training product, but they were pricey and had mixed reviews. So I kept searching until I stumbled upon some free info*, and it seems to have all the details I’ll need.

A couple of drawbacks to this process are that you need a toilet available only for the cats for a while, and once they’re trained, you’ll have to make sure the lid is always left up. Still, I felt like the trade-off would be worth it.

The first step was to move the litter box to the first floor, since that’s where the available toilet is, so I hauled the box from the top of the stairs to the bottom. I cleaned the carpet under the old box location well (even though they hadn’t had accidents), and left the vacuum there for a couple of days as an extra deterrent. It worked. My cats immediately sniffed their way downstairs and used their box without issue.

After a week and no accidents, I moved the box across the living room and about 15 feet closer to its eventual final location. A couple of weeks later, we were down the hallway and into the bathroom, next to the available toilet. So far, so good!

Excited to move to the next step, I went to the store to gather my supplies: a tin pan and flushable cat litter. That’s where I hit a roadblock – of all the litters on the shelf, none were flushable. I pulled out my phone and did an internet search, but the brand names popping up clearly stated DO NOT FLUSH on the packages. I came home empty-handed and need to do a bit more research.

Readers, have you toilet trained your cats? What’s your favorite brand of flushable cat litter?

*Using a guide found at toilettrainacat.com


  • LeeAnn

    Swheatscoop is supposed to be flushable. Though, if your cats never go on the loo, we LOVE Blue Buffalo walnut shell litter. With two cats, two littler boxes can almost go a whole month with out completely changing the box, just daily scoops. My roommate has a sensitive nose, I’d hear about it if it smelled even a little and they are both in the living room. Blue Buff also composts…. Now I’m looking for biodegradable bags to scoop into. Luck with your kitty potty experiment!

  • Judith

    Blue Buffalo walnut kitty litter is great. After removal of “lumps” odor is almost completely gone. If necessary, a squirt of Zero Odor finishes it off. It “clumps” well, flushes completely, makes no “dust’, and doesn’t stick to the pan. Most important, our four Maus love it. JPS

  • Mesila

    I’m a big Feline Pine fan. This stuff is magic. It completely eliminates the scent of urine and I live in a very small room. (And it’s cheaper than the walnut litter and more widely available.)

  • LeniAnn

    As one who used to work in a pet supply store – most ‘flushable’ litters just need to sit in the bowl for a few minutes (don’t remember exactly how long) before it can truly be flushed.

  • Gale

    SWheat is DEFINITELY flushable. We have 4
    “sensitive” toilets here and there has never been a problem!

  • Theresa

    I use World’s Best Cat Litter; and it is flushable.

  • Betty Marszalek

    I tried this a few years ago, was successful with one cat but not the other (she is a furious digger) therefore, went back to a litterbox. You definitely need two toilets available, I only had one toilet and it was a real bother and mess, but I had hoped for success. I believe that it can be done, especially if you are a new cat owner because that cat won’t know any difference – new home – new toilet option. Wishing you success.

  • David

    I think World’s Best cat litter has controlled odor the best, but not fantastically. Swheat scoop very flushable, too. I didn’t know Feline Pine was flushable!

  • Christina

    World’s Best Cat Litter goes down fine, while S’Wheat clogged the toilet. You do have to wait 10-20 seconds (depending on clog size) for the clog to disintegrate before flushing.


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