My 8 Mo Old Kitten Never Learned Properly?

by Kelsey

Mishka, my 8 month old recently adopted Siamese mix, is an only cat. She uses her litter box perfectly well when she needs to go.

She has always gone inside the four walls of the box (except that one time she mistook the bath tub for a giant litter box when I first adopted her.)

She isn't shy about it either, so I've been watching her "go" and I've noticed her approach is a little backwards. Mishka has the whole "dig and cover" idea down OK, but she will dig all the way to the bottom of the box, and then poop on the pile she just dug.

After that she tries really hard to cover the business, even though it's pretty difficult, considering it's on top of litter mountain. Gravity just doesn't pan out for that to work, and she will try for up to 5 minutes, all the while getting litter EVERYWHERE!

I've tried turning her around so her rear is over the hole, but she would just look at me like I've violated her, and turn back to aim at litter mountain again. It's the same thing with both #1 and #2... :(
What do I do?

My Thoughts:

That's a tough one, Kelsey. Some cats like to "splash around" in the litter and it goes everywhere.

Other cats like to poop on top and either don't cover it, barely cover it, or splash around. I'm not sure that you can train a cat out of this behavior.

The solution for that is usually to use a litter box with higher sides. A Rubbermaid storage container with high sides and a cutout for an entrance/exit can work for this.

Another thing you could try first, is experimenting with the amount of litter. Usually, I like to keep enough litter in the box so that it's 3 to 4 inches high when evenly spread out.

The typical recommendations I've seen are less than that, even as low as 1 to 2 inches. So in this case, you might try that and see if that gives her less of a pile to build.

I hope that helps. Please let us know what you try and what works, if anything.

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