When it comes up that you have to move the litter box, this can be a trick situation to face. The location of your cat’s litter box is important and if it comes to it, moving the litter box is sometimes necessary, but not always easy.
Picking the actual location that the litter box is going to reside is not always obvious, and one must take in many factors to choose the right spot.
If you decide that it is the right decision for you and your cat to bring the litter box to a new spot, then keep in mind that this switch is going to require patience from you while your cat adjusts.
Do You Have To Move The Litter Box?
When moving the litter box there are a few things that one must keep at the front of their mind to make everything going smoothly.
The new destination of the litter box should be a peaceful and low noise area.
Cats are not fans of being pestered and interrupted during their sacred time of using the litter box. Noise can cause them stress, and this can make them dislike the new location of the litter box. It should also have some area moving through it to not allow smell from building up.
The new spot should be easy for your cat to get to.
Your cat should have access to their litter box at every single minute of the day to ensure they are happy with their litter box situation. It should also be effortless for them to reach. There should never be a moment where the litter box is behind closed doors that forces your cat to hold it or go somewhere, where they are not supposed to. This point holds especially true for older cats that aren’t as mobile and do not have the same bladder control and patience as younger cats.
Keep the litter box away from food and water
Cats have some innate knowledge like humans where they know that the bathroom and the location for eating and drinking should not be mixed. Keeping these two too close to each other can cause issues of your cat avoiding one or the other or both. Cats do not want to eat where they poop just like humans in case of getting contamination.
Give your cat multiple options of litter boxes in different spots
Cats should have multiple locations in the home where they can go to the bathroom if they need to. If you are moving the litter box, also give them an additional option of a litter box in a separate area. In case one area is inaccessible temporarily, there is always the other spot available.
What Makes A Good Spot For A Litter Box?
When picking a spot, keep the suggested advice from above in mind, so you can think of good locations in your home that could work for your cat.
A closet is one of the best locations for a litter box especially if you are in an apartment. Closets check almost all of the boxes of what is considered a good spot for a litter box. The one exception is that sometimes, the ventilation is not amazing in a closet, but other than that it is good. If you do end up using a closet, make sure that the door is always open or even better, you can choose a closet without a door or remove the door.
Garages are great spots because they are a spot for people to hangout, they tend to be quiet, are big enough spaces so the smell won’t engulf the whole thing, and they can be accessible if you want. To make a garage accessible, you can either add a cat door or keep the door between your house and the garage open at all times to allow your cat free range to use the litter box whenever they want.
A laundry room
The laundry room is another pretty good spot for the litter box. People will not be in the laundry room that often except when doing laundry. Usually the laundry room also acts as a place for storage so you can keep the litter for the litter box nearby for convenience. One downside with the laundry room is that when the washer and dryer are turned on, this can frighten your cat and dissuade them from using the litter box which might start issues. But, the washer and dryer are not going to be running that often, so this shouldn’t be that big of a deal, and your cat will likely get used to the sound after awhile.
Under the stairs
Under the stairs is a good option if you have the ability to do this in your living situation. The only downside is that the smell of the litter box will be in an area that gets a lot of traffic. Also, when someone is on the stairs this might scare your cat, but other than that it is good.
In the basement
Basements are great because usually nobody is going to the basement. Basements are usually very peaceful places. Make sure that the door is kept open to the basement, so your cat can always access it.
How To Move Your Cat’s Litter Box
Moving the litter box is about planning, patience, and persistence. It is not always going to be a smooth ride but you will be able to do it.
Switch the spots with baby steps.
Start by purchasing another litter box and putting this litter box in the area that you want to move to. If you already have a second litter box, then you can just move the litter box to the new spot. It might be frustrating to have to get another litter box, but it won’t go to waste, because cats should have two litter boxes anyways. Keep this setup for a few days and just observe what is going on. If your cat seems to be starting to use the litter box in the new spot, then don’t do anything yet to allow your cat to continue building the habit of going to the new spot. If they are not using the new litter box, then start to move the litter box in the old spot closer and closer to the litter box in the new spot. Everyday shift the location of the litter box enough to make progress, but not too much to disrupt your cat until eventually you make it to the new spot. This can be seen as tedious, but this practice only takes a week or so to complete. It is the method that is the easiest on your cat.
It is a good idea to make sure your cat has more than one litter box throughout the house, so you can use the other litter box in another place.
Stay with the same litter
When switching litter box spots, you want to do everything you can to make the process easy on your cat. You don’t want to switch up anything more than what you have to. So, don’t go changing the litter at the same time as this will likely cause issues. The process of switching cat litter is a completely different process that should get it’s own attention.
Is it fine to change the location of the litter box?
Yes, relocating a litter box is fine, but it should be done with thought. Cats are creatures of habit and sudden changes may cause distress or confusion. So, it’s best to introduce the new location gradually. Think through it carefully and make the steps easy on your kitty and this should help you stay away from litter box problems.
Will your cat become angry if the litter box changes to a new spot?
Carol is a veterinary technician and has 15 plus years of experience working in the veterinary medicine field. In her free time, she likes to write about pets.