Wednesday, May 11, 2016

All about the poop

First, my qualifications.  I grew up with a cat.  Then Ron and I had cats nearly all our married lives, so pretty safe to say I have had cats for 40 years now. 

Wow, that's odd to read. 

Anyway, litter boxes.  I use big, non-covered litter boxes with fairly high sides.  Some of my friends use storage boxes (the plastic tote with a lid types) with one side cut down as a "door" for kitty to go in and do her business. 

Baby Girl got trapped in a covered litter box when she was a baby kitten, and it was rather traumatic for her, albeit very, very, funny.  She was meowing and putting her paws on the clear flap, pushing and trying to get out, but not quite strong enough to move it.  Poor little nut.  We took the flap off, she still wouldn't use it, so we just took the top off the covered box and she was fine with that. 

I suggest a box at least 6 inches deep.  Some cats are real "flingers" and like to fling the litter everywhere.  Baby Girl will occasionally, in her vigor to bury, actually throw a turd out of the box.  She is pooping in the box, she just throws it out when she covers.  I don't get upset, I have them out of the way so she can't fling it where we walk (Ron might step on it, ew). 

Now, if you are getting a kitten I would do at least 2 boxes, and shallower ones, until kitty gets about 6-9 months old.  Kittens are small, with small bladders and bowels, and it can be a very long hike to the litter box.   Put one at each end of the house. 

Get kitty already fixed from a shelter, or get kitty fixed at a low cost clinic as soon as you can.  Hormonal kitties will make a lot of racket at night, and/or pee everywhere. 

And that's your fault, because you didn't get them fixed. 

Every cat I've had has known what to do with the box.  In fact, the day I found Biscuit and Gravy, the second I let them loose in the house, one of them went straight for the litter box while the other headed for the food bowl!   They don't need to be trained.  You can show them the box, or set them in it, but that's all you need to worry about. 

I use clumping litter.  I find it easy.  The pee forms a "rock" in the loose litter.  I just pluck it out with my scoop.  I have a metal scoop with a longer handle and I find that most useful.  When Ron scoops, he puts his hand inside a plastic bag and uses that to "harvest".   I dig out my "harvest" with the scoop and put it all into a plastic bag.  I try not to bash the pee-clumps too much because they will crumble, especially if fresh. 

I scoop every day, or at worst, 6 days a week.  I have one box for each cat so it's easier.  They have their favorite boxes.  They like the one in Ron's room best, then the one in the front room.  They use the computer room box next and then the one in my bedroom. 

I had an automatic box but I had problems with it, if the poop wasn't 100% solid it would clog the rake and make an awful mess.  It was more work cleaning the poop off the rake than it was just cleaning the box.  It honestly isn't that hard to scoop if you do it every day, and a lot less work than a baby! 

One tip I wish I had gotten before I got Torbie, make sure you find out what brand kitty is eating when you get her.  Say "Fancy Feast Liver and Onions".  That way you can feed her the same thing, or transition to a new food slowly. 

When I got Torbie, I just brought her home and fed her rich grain-free food.  She had some loose bowel issues as a result.  She was used to eating cheap shelter food and it took her a while to get used to eating the quality stuff.  I wish I could have transitioned her from the cheap stuff to the good stuff a little smoother, because I'm sure it caused her some discomfort.  I wish I had been given that advice. 

Always, always, let the cat pick you.  You will never go wrong if you do that.  All of our cats picked us and they seem pretty happy to live here. 

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That was awesome tutorial i printed it and will have my husband read it! Thank you homestly and sincerely! I tried doing a search and was overwhelmed. This was the info i needed! I can hardly wait to see what kitty makes their life with us!

A visit with the parents

So, my Dad's in town.  Along with my adoptive Mom.  Say what you will, she did raise me.  I slept pretty well last night - no noise.  ...