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How to Train a Kitten to the Litterbox :: Kitten Care

Kittens are readily trained to the litterbox, which is much preferable to accidents on the carpet. The momma cat will usually train them, but if you are the surrogate momma, here's how.

Here's How:
  1. If you have other cats, buy a new litterbox for the kitten. A small one that she can easily climb in is good for starters.
  2. Fill the box with a good non-scented, non-clumping litter to the depth of three or four inches.
  3. Place the litterbox in a quiet, private place away from her food dish, but easily accessible to her. Put a mat underneath to catch any litter thrown out by busy little paws.
  4. Immediately after feeding your kitten, pick her up and gently place her in the litterbox. Scratch the litter a little with your fingers so she can get the idea.
  5. If she goes, praise her profusely. If she doesn't, watch her closely for indications of wanting to go elsewhere.
  6. The instant you see her squatting, pick her up and gently place her in the litterbox. Never throw her in or scold her--it will only associate the box with unpleasant memories in her mind.
  7. Every time she uses the box, praise her profusely. You want her to associate her box usage with pleasure.
  8. Keep the box immaculately clean, by scooping it several times a day and changing the litter and washing and disenfecting the box at least twice weekly.


  1. The rule of thumb is one litterbox per cat plus one extra. Therefore, two cats= three litterboxes.
  2. Do not keep your cat locked up in your bedroom at night, away from the box. Cat's can't hold it all night.
  3. Once you've found a good litter and box location, don't change it. Subtle changes can often cause a cat to forget its previous training.

Related Articles:
First Weeks With A New Kitten
Caring for your kitten
Neutering your cat
Hand rearing kittens

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