Potty Training Cats – Part I

Posted on September 20, 2013 under Cat Articles

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