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I\'ve never used a litter box before

Meghan GiacopelliMeghan Giacopelli WashingtonMember Posts: 445
edited 8 June, 2007 in Cat Health
What is this little box of sawdust stuff here? My cat is inside for the first time in her life. She lived in the barn when we moved here. She's pregnant and we want her to have her kittens in safety because the one before was killed by either a raccoon or Tom cat. And before you think- she's getting spayed after and we are keeping the kittens. They will be properly cared for. Ok. So Persephone doesn't mind being inside (in our basement) for over 24 hours and she hasn't used the litter box I've provided for her. The floor is dirt and I'm wondering if she's going to prefer using it than the box of litter. She's been eating so I know she's gotta be going somewhere. I made things so nice for her there but it isn't guaranteed she'll use any of it. Any ideas on how to encourage a cat to use the box?


  • Diana GabaldonDiana Gabaldon PortlandMember Posts: 5,607
    edited 6 June, 2007
    Hi Persephone, I am glad to hear that you are safe inside while you have your babies. I wish I had more information to give you on the litter box. The only thing I have ever heard about is a litter called Cat Attrack. I think it has a smell that makes kitty want to use it. Good luck with your babies. Purrrrrs, Diego & Lulu
  • Nuk AnukNuk Anuk Member Posts: 846
    edited 6 June, 2007
    We Looooooooooove that you've given Persephone a safe place to have her kittens. We have no experience converting purely outdoor cats to indoor litter boxes. So we can offer nothing that's from *our own experiences* (Hopefully on this wonderful community of cats and humans some-one will have dealt with this same problem before, and be able to advise you) In the meantime, we found this: "If you suspect your cat has spent part of his life outdoors and is likely to eliminate in your houseplants, try mixing some potting soil with your regular litter; pellet-type litters or those made from citrus peels are not recommended. Once you find a litter your cat likes, stick with it. " We think probably Persephone was used to doing her *business* in dirt, and if your basement is dirt floored she's probably doing it there. (wondering what that scented, clay or scoopy sand box is for) It was from this site: adoption brochure.pdf We wish you the best of luck and we all purr our thanks that you gave this mama-to-be a safe place to birth.
  • Shelley CoxShelley Cox CarbondaleMember Posts: 2,752
    edited 6 June, 2007
    This is Delyte. My former, late companion, Peri, was an outdoor kitten when she was given to my person at age 6 weeks. She didn't know what the pan was for either. We took some dirt from outside--relatively clean, not dirt that had been used by a kitty recently--and put it on her pan and she instantly knew what it was for. And, I have to say, she was not the brightest star in the galaxy. [Her mom was a stray and did not get proper nutrition, we think.] Stella on the other hand, although being an outside cat when we caught her and brought her in, instantly knew what the pan was for. But it was being used--by me!!--at the time, so it wasn't that hard for her to figure out. She is a pretty bright cat, even though she is an awful pest. Good luck to you in your new home!!
  • SterlingAndTheSTeamSterlingAndTheSTeam Mount OliveMember Posts: 41,262 ✭✭✭
    edited 7 June, 2007
    Taag and Delyte have got it right! Aragorn was a barn kitten when I brought him home. I filled one side of the litterbox with clay litter and the other side with soil from the outside. He immediately went "potty" in the soil. Each time he would use the litterbox he would cover up his deposits and the clay litter gradually got mixed with the soil. Gradually, I used less and less soil and more clay litter. It took only a week or two. One suggestion you might try is when you clean the litterbox, leave a tiny bit of urine-soaked litter so she knows its her litterbox because it is "marked" with her smell. Hopefully this will teach her to use the litterbox and not the dirt floor. P.S. Sawdust is a good litterbox filler. I'm assuming you use it in the barn, so buying in large quantities makes for good cost savings.
  • Amber GonzlaezAmber Gonzlaez San AntonioMember Posts: 9,175
    edited 7 June, 2007
    No suggestions...but just wanted to say: Bless their heart for taking you in and providing a loving home for your kittens! :c9
  • Meghan GiacopelliMeghan Giacopelli WashingtonMember Posts: 445
    edited 8 June, 2007
    Well, I went and cover the sawdust with dirt from the barn. I am waiting to see if she uses it. I might try the one side dirt and one side saw dust.
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