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      #1  
    Old February 25th 2012, 11:42 PM
    dhami1 dhami1 is offline
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    Default Kitten sleeping in LK??

    My kitten, Pan, has been on the small amber stage (I have a multi cat kit) for awhile now and I believe he's got it. But for the past week I've noticed that the litter's been displaced, but not used, on occasion. I finally figured out what it was. I heard him scratching and went in there with the bag of treats to praise him, and he was just LAYING in the LK! Wtf? Has anyone elses cats done this? It is freaking disgusting. I mean, it was clean, but I don't completely switch out the litter every time I clean it, and I'm sure the tray itself was germy....

    What does it mean if a cat lays in the LK? I have no rugs in the bathroom and his bed isn't in there because I don't want him to use alternate places to go. Also, I leave him in the bathroom while no one's home and overnight because until he's trained, I just don't trust him not to use my bed (we live in a studio apartment). When I was gone I had a friend stay over and watch him and she wasn't vigilant enough and he used my bed. I used to leave him out while I was gone and only put him up at night, but now it makes me too nervous.

    I just bumped him up to the big amber stage, and we will see how he takes to it. The last time we tried transitioning to this stage, I placed him on it to show him and he was too freaked out by the hole to use the LK. Now that he's had a couple more weeks to habituate to the hole in the small amber stage I'm hoping he'll take to the bigger hole more readily. Also, I'm not going to show him; I'm just going to let him discover it himself. I didn't show him the small hole in the small amber stage and he was totally fine with it. Maybe this whole operation has to be covert...

    Also, how long do you think he has to have "roaming privileges" revoked? It's a pretty big bathroom so it's not like he's in a closet while I'm gone, but I'd like to leave him out so that I know he's choosing the LK. If I get him totally trained and then leave him out, what if he uses my bed? Is it best to find out now?
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      #2  
    Old February 26th 2012, 12:21 AM
    Aurora Aurora is offline
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    Cats usually lie in their litter boxes when they have no other place they feel they can call their own. It is a small, contained space that smells like them, and they lie in it when they need to feel safe. You see this a lot in animal shelters and pet stores. If you are going to be locking Pan in the bathroom, you should be providing him with his cat bed or something (as well as his food and water if it's for long periods of time). If you keep his food and water near his cat bed, I think he will be less likely to use it to toilet. Maybe Norwegiangirl can give some more advice on that as she keeps her cats in the toilet too when she can't supervise them.

    How long you want to keep him in the bathroom when you can't supervise him will be up to you; it will probably depend on how consistently Pan uses the toilet, but at some point as training proceeds you will regain your trust in him. If you throw a plastic tarp over the bed, you can protect it from Pan (he won't be likely to use it with the plastic on it, and even if he does you've protected the bed). Or you may develop a routine in which Pan always spends the night in the bathroom - if he is comfortable with this and has his bed and water in there, it will become a natural thing for both of you, similar to crating a dog.

    Last edited by Aurora : February 26th 2012 at 12:23 AM.
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    Old February 26th 2012, 12:43 AM
    dhami1 dhami1 is offline
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    It makes me sad he doesn't feel safe in his own home! But then again, I've only had him for 3 weeks.

    I also should have specified that his food and water are always full and in there with him, and that he has toys in there as well, just not a bed because it's soft and he might use it to poo in. Also, he doesn't like his bed that I bought him (even with Feliway sprayed in it). He prefers the floor or my lap!

    The tarp is a good idea. I want him to have free reign of the apartment and use the toilet naturally like a litter box. I don't want to keep him in the bathroom - I just don't see any alternatives for now. I try not to be gone too often (luckily I can do a lot of work from home), and if I am I make sure people are staying with him.
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    Old February 26th 2012, 11:49 PM
    Norwegiangirl85 Norwegiangirl85 is offline
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    I just saw a picture of a cat napping in his litterbox on facebook, that cat has many beds and is very comfortable in his own home so it doesn't have to mean that your cat doesn't fell safe I had a blancket on the floor in the bathroom, but my cats peed on it so I gave it up and haven't provided them with another bed, but they do have a small scraching post in there and they can sleep inside or on top of that so it works good as a bed and they don't pee on it

    I have heard some people put shower curtains on their bed, that might work to protect it while you are gone. A plastic tarp also sounds like a good idea, I havn't tried either since I'm afraid my cats will eat on it...But maybe I will actually try it myself since I do have one at home

    Last edited by Norwegiangirl85 : February 26th 2012 at 11:52 PM.
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      #5  
    Old February 27th 2012, 12:57 PM
    Aurora Aurora is offline
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    I'm sorry, I just re-read my post and I didn't mean to imply that Pan does not feel safe in the rest of your/his home, just that cats will sleep in their litterboxes because they like to - it has their scent and they feel safe and secure in their ownership of it. If Pan doesn't have another bed or he just hasn't fully settled into your home yet and staked out another favourite place for himself, that might be why he sleeps in the LitterKwitter. It's not usually a negative behaviour, just a gross one, and it should go away when Pan finds a place he feels he "owns" as much as the LitterKwitter.
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      #6  
    Old February 27th 2012, 11:11 PM
    dhami1 dhami1 is offline
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    It's totally fine, Aurora. It's been several years since I've had a kitten so I didn't take what you said in a negative way, just instructive.

    He took to the large amber stage quite well and I actually think that will resolve the sleeping problem, since there's no longer enough room for him to "nest" in. He also let me bathe him today - such a good boy

    I wish he would use his bed! It's a self-warming bed and I know he would like it if he would just stay in it. And I am regaining my trust in him. As I'm home I will leave him out even when I know he has to go to the bathroom and he's been consistently choosing the LK. I'm just worried about leaving him out while I'm gone. He'd never gone to the bathroom on my bed before until 2 weeks ago.

    I had a friend staying overnight to watch him since I had to be gone for business 2 nights. She invited 2 mutual friends over for dinner and games. They were in the kitchen cooking and she came into the bedroom and smelled something bad - and Pan had peed and poo'd in the center of my bed. She stripped everything down and was washing/dry cleaning it. The next morning she let him out of the bathroom and he hopped up on the bed and peed on the bare foam topper. I'm not sure why he did this. It's usually just us in the apartment, but I have had people over before (usually just 1 at a time to introduce them to him). But he had met 2 of the 3 people before when he did that. Also the fact that he did not once, but twice worried me. I didn't want him to form any new bad habits.

    However, since I've been home (for 2 weeks steadily) he's been using the LK consistently. I think she was doing something wrong since he'd never had a problem before. I bought a water proof cover for my mattress and have been letting him curl up on me on the bed or anywhere on the bed whenever he wants, just not unsupervised. I'm hoping we'll be done with the training in another month if he keeps up this pace, so we'll see what happens then...
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