Tips To Train A Kitten To Use A Litter Box


Contrary to popular belief not all kittens automatically know how to use a litter box. Many mother cats do train a kitten in the purpose and use of a litter box. But, if you have found a young stray kitten or have adopted a very young kitten it may not yet be familiar with using the litter box.

After about 3 or 4 weeks of age the kitten’s natural instinct to eliminate in soil or sand will kick in so this is the time when a kitten will be ready to use a litter box.

You will need to introduce your kitten to the litter box. Place the kitten into the box directly after it has eaten or awakened from a nap or finished playing. You may have to scratch in the litter the first few times so the kitten gets the idea or you may want to take its front paws and show the kitten it should scratch.

For a young kitten you want a litter box which has low sides so the kitten can climb into the litter box fairly easily.

Do not be surprised or dismayed if the kitten jumps out the first couple of times it is placed in the litter box. It will soon catch onto the idea.

The kitten needs to know the location of the litter box. The litter box should be in a quiet out of the way place that is easy for the kitten to reach. You do not want to put a litter box in a high traffic area or somewhere where there is a lot of noise.


Once it has the right idea most kittens will continue to use a litter box without any problems. However, if your kitten is not using the box and instead having accidents outside the box you need to have patience. Don’t yell at the kitten or spray it with a water bottle or rub its nose in the mess. This will just confuse the kitten. Instead stick with the training by placing the kitten back into the litter box often and showing it how to scratch at the litter. If the kitten continues to have accidents or shows signs of straining or diarrhea you might want to consult the veterinarian to check for any medical problems.

The rule of thumb for litter boxes for cats is one litter box for each cat plus one extra box.

Cats and kittens are by nature clean animals. They may refuse to use a litter box that is not cleaned often enough. You need to scoop the litter box at least once daily and change the litter about once a week. When you change the litter clean the box and wash it out. Then dry the box and put in fresh litter. Some people like to put the empty washed litte box in the sunlight for a little while before filling it.

If your kitten is already using a litter box before joining your household you might consider continuing with the same litter it is comfortable using.

Most cats like litter without a scent. They like something which has a fine texture that feels like sand or garden soil and is the clumping type litter.

If you started your kitten with a very small litter box with low sides you probably will need to move up to a larger litter box with higher sides as the cat grows.

Most kittens will easily be trained to use a litter box.