Even if you purchase one of the best litter boxes in the world, if your cat is not happy with its location, he or she may choose to use your carpet or some other comfy spot as a toilet. While cats are not overly picky, they do like their toilet to be clean, easily accessible, and private (but not too private). Thus, when choosing the location for your cat’s litter box, you should keep in mind your friend’s preferences, without neglecting your own. Here are our top 6 tips for proper litter box placement.
Near Your Cat’s Favorite Spots
When cats need to go, they need to go and they do not want to travel long to their toilet. Thus, the litter box should be placed close to the spots where your cat spends most of the time. For example, you can place it somewhere between the place where your cat sleeps and the place where he or she usually plays or you can place it in your cat’s absolute favorite room. One way or another, your cat needs to have quick and easy access to the toilet at all times, so there should be no closed doors or other insurmountable obstacles in the way.
What is important here is to be aware of the fact that if your cat does not visit some part of your home often, he or she is not likely to use a litter box placed in that location. You may not want the litter box to be in your bedroom, but you should not put it in the garage or the attic either if your cat does not frequent those places.
Away From Your Cat’s Dining Table
Cats do not like to eat, drink, and eliminate in the same place. In fact, cats that live in the wilderness perform all three actions in separate places. While it is fine to place the water bowl next to the food bowl, it is necessary to choose a different location for the litter box because cats simply do not want to poop where they eat. Although they cannot choose the location of the food and drink bowls, they can and will go elsewhere to eliminate.
Away From Your Other Pets’ Territory
If you have multiple pets, be they other cats or dogs or flamingos, you should keep in mind that animals tend to be territorial. Thus, if you place your cat’s litter box in a spot that your dog considers to be his or her territory, there may be trouble. Keep track of your pets’ movement and habits to be sure that no dominant pet is likely to prevent your cat from using the toilet due to territorial issues.
Furthermore, if you opt for one of the cat-favorite open-top litter boxes like Luuup, with improper placement, the content of the litter box may be too readily available to other pets and they may consider it theirs to play with if it is in their territory.
Away From Cold & Dark Places
Cats like their toilets to be comfy. While it is smart to keep a ketchup bottle in a cool and dark place, the opposite is true for a litter box. The private-but-not-too-private rule applies here. You should not choose a remote part of your home, such as the basement or any place that is likely to be unpleasant due to temperature, moisture or absence of light. The litter box does not have to be in the middle of the living room, but it should be in a livable, cozy place.
Away From Crowded & High-Traffic Areas
Although cats do not like too secluded and unfriendly places, they do value privacy as much as they value accessibility. If the litter box is in a crowded place, your cat may have a hard time reaching it and may not feel comfortable enough to use it. The optimal location is relatively quiet and easily accessible from all directions. Some cats that particularly like privacy may enjoy a corner litter box, but it is usually best to leave some room on all sides of the box and make sure there is not too much clutter or traffic around it. That way, you are ensuring that your cat does not feel trapped or uncomfortable while using the toilet.
In The Same Place As The Old Litter Box
If you already own a litter box and are wondering where to place the new one, the answer is: in the same place as the old litter box. Even if the location is not ideal, your cat is probably used to it by now and placing the new litter box in a different spot may be confusing. However, if your cat does not like the old location and tends to eliminate elsewhere from time to time, then you should choose a different location based on the advice above.
Essentially, the best place for a litter box is one that is easily accessible, not too crowded, unfriendly or noisy, close to your cat’s favorite spots, and away from food and other pets’ territory. If your cat already has a litter box, changing your cat’s toilet location is not a good idea unless the current location really does not work for your cat and results in house soiling.