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Service Cats: Litterboxes, Litter and Feline Urinary Habits

MeOW Welcome to a brand new Service Cat Monday. We’re really behind today, but we think when ya’ get to the end, you’ll furgive us. We have quite a few questions regarding the wheelchair that we’re holding until the new chair gets here. In the meantime, we’re runnin’ low on your other questions. ‘Member, the only dumb question, is the one that’s not asked. Everypawdy can’t be a seasoned pet pawrent; ya’ have to start somewhere. So ask us anythin’ and we’ll do our bestest to help out. We’re tacklin’ a good one today. Let’s get the business outta the way and get to it. The followin’ post will be written in human English fur reader and translator ease. Our Service Cat Monday posts aren’t intended to be an all inclusive Trainin’ Manual but rather Tips, Tricks and Techniques used/developed by mommy A thru her many years of animal trainin’, cats in purrticular. And to offur insight into your questions about Feline Behavior. Ifin you have any questions or topics you would like us to cover, purrlease let us know in the comments section or send us an email. When asking behavioral questions, purrlease be as specific as pawssible. And, ifin you’ve missed any of the posts in this series, you can ketch up by clickin’ the links at the end of this post. Always remember, Training is all ‘bout Repetition and Rewards.

 

Dezi laying in cat tree in new harness

 

 

So, what’s the hot topic today that every kitty pawrent wouldn’t want to miss? Well, every living being on the planet has 4 basic functions they must do in order to survive: Eat, Drink, Sleep and Eliminate (urinate and defecate). Today, we’re going to focus on kitty’s need to Eliminate. We call this a hot topic because inappropriate Elimination has been the cause of so many kitties losing their furever homes. Problems arising from kitty’s inability to Eliminate can lead to illness and even death. And as every inside only kitty parent would probably say, the litter box is the least favorite part of being owned by a cat. But, it’s necessary. The litterbox isn’t something you or your kitty can live without. Now we know that some have trained kitty to use the human toilet, and some have kitties that go outdoors, but, ideally kitty should have access to a clean litterbox to use for their Elimination needs.

 

 Dezi sits on toilet

Me’s not usin’ this thing. Me wants a real box.

 

 

We’re not going to spend much time on the alternatives, but we would like to quickly address kitties using the human toilet. As we prove each week with our Service Cat Monday posts, cats are extremely intelligent, but even cats have limitations. Mommy had once thought teaching kitty to use the toilet would be wonderful. However, watching sis Lexi’s mobility and balance decline over the last year of her life has totally changed her mind. We Do Not recommend toilet training any cat.

 

 Open Litterboxes

 

 

 

So, whether you have a new kitty, one kitty or ten (or more), you’re going to need a litterbox. The rule of thumb is 1 box and a spare for each cat in your home. As most people with one or two cats will likely tell you, they’re getting by with just 1 box. But, be aware, the fewer boxes you have the greater chance you have of inappropriate Eliminating. Now, we’ll get back to choosing the right box in a minute. We’d like to talk Litter for a minute.

 

Swheatscoop Cat Litter

Multi Cat

 

SmartCat cat litter

 

 

With all the different types of litter on the market, it can be confusing. Especially to the novice cat owner. But, even long time cat owners can get overwhelmed at times. To Clump or not to clump, that is the question. If only it were that simple. But, that is the first question you need to ask yourself. We prefer Clumping. Mommy says she can’t even remember the day of non clumping litters and is thankful for that memory loss. MOL The next question you might ask is, natural or not? The truth is, clay is just as natural as corn, wheat or grass. The difference is how it reacts in the litterbox and inside kitty’s tummy. Make no mistake, kitty is getting some litter in their mouths. And just about anything that goes into kitty’s mouth is going down their throats, due to the nature of their tongue barbs. (we’ll cover that in another post if you’d like). Cats are such fastidious groomers, that anything left on our furs or between our paw pads is going to get licked and may be ingested. Here is where the natural difference comes in. Clay and it’s clumping additives are not naturally edible and don’t easily pass thru kitty’s intestines. Instead they do inside kitty the same as they do in the litterbox…form clumps and cause blockages. While there may be little nutritional value to corn or wheat in a cat food, it can certainly pass thru the intestines with ease.

 

Okocat cat litter

BoxieCat Clay Cat litter

 

The next question to ask is, Scented or Unscented?. The smell of cat urine is like pouring a bottle of amonia in a bowl. It can quickly cause burning eyes, burning and/or itching in the nose and throat and just plain be unpleasant. Many litters on the market add things like perfumes, baking soda and other scented additives to make the litter smell more pleasing to the human nose. Notice me said human nose. When was the last time you saw a kitty of any size looking for the closest lavender field to urinate in? Kitties have very sensitive olfactory senses (noses). We kitties prefer a totally Unscented place to Eliminate. Remember, cats are both Predators and Prey; and anything that draws attention to us could in our minds put us at risk of becoming something bigger’s meal. And hey, if you’re scooping like you should be, there shouldn’t be any lasting smells. (we’ve only posted a few different types of litter. there are many many more to choose from)

 

 Raena with 3 bags of Garfield litter

 

 

Another thing we’d like to bring your awareness too is Litters/Additives that can help one keep an eye on kitty’s urinary health. In recent years crystal type litters have gained popularity due to their lack of color or color changing crystal additives. These help humans identify Urine pH levels or blood in the urine easier. We’ll tell you that for this reason, we really like the Garfield Cat Litter. It’s completely clear, clumps well and keeps down odors naturally. It has minimal dust and a texture most cats like. It comes in two formulas, small grain and large grain. We prefer the small grain, as it’s very soft and easy on the paws. It feels a lot like sand. We think it would work great for older, paw sensitive and declawed cats. (PLEASE Do Not Declaw your cats!!!). Stay tuned at the end of this post, we’re giving away a couple of 10 pound bags.

 

 Raena looking at the Garfield cat litter

 

 

 

Let’s talk about scooping for a minute. No matter how many cats and/or litterboxes you have, you should scoop the litterbox at least once a day. Me personally, thinks it should be scooped every time a deposit is made. Yes, mommy spoiled me and me never grew out of it. But, one day when she was mumbling about scooping so me could go poop, me had just peed and so the box must be cleaned ASAP; she thought to herself, “I wouldn’t want to use a potty that hadn’t been flushed after the last use so really…why would I expect my girls to use a dirty potty?.” When ya’ put it that way, it makes total sense. She doesn’t mumble as much anymore. MOL   Anyways, for the rest of the world, we say at the very least, once a day. The cleaner the box, the less chance you’ll have of Inappropriate Elimination. Remember, us cats really like clean.

 

Hooded and High Sided Litter boxes

So, you’ve chosen a litter and are ready to go. How do you pick a litterbox? The box you choose must be large enough to accommodate kitty. Most kitties are going to want to turn around a time or two, dig a little and then pick a spot and squat. Of course there are the kitties who forget to squat. If you have one of those, be sure to look for a box with high sides or maybe a lid. Just be sure the lid is large enough for kitty to be able to stand up straight in. If you’re using an enclosed litterbox, regular scooping becomes even more important. Most of the smell is trapped under the lid. We shouldn’t have to explain walking into a stinky bathroom, we think most everybody already knows about that one. You may also want to look into an automatic litterbox. They’ve come a long way in the last few years. Stay tuned, we’ll be giving you the scoop on our pick next week. The last step is to place kitty’s litterbox in a quiet place with easy access in and out. You don’t want kitty to feel trapped or cornered.

 

 Dezi and Raena watch the Litter Robot Open Air Litter Box

Hmmmmm I’s don’t know sissy, what do you think?

 

 

 

So, you’ve done everything right. The box is the perfect size, you chose the best unscented litter with a texture kitty loves and placed it in a quiet location, but kitty’s still Inappropriately Eliminating. Here are a few tips to get kitty and their pee and poop back in the box where it belongs. Do Not Punish kitty!!! Remember, all successful Training is about Positive Reinforcement, Repetition and Rewards. First things first. Clean the area well with an odor neutralizing cleaner. You don’t want to mask the odor, but eliminate it altogether. Take kitty to the VET to rule out any medical reasons such as Urinary Tract Infections, Kidney or Bladder Stones, etc. If kitty gets an all clear, try placing a litterbox over the area kitty is using temporarily to entice kitty to use it. Sprinkle a litter attractant, catnip, silvervine or valerian on the litter and the lip of the litterbox. If you see kitty start to use the floor, say in a firm voice, “NO” and move kitty to the litterbox. Each time you see kitty use the box, praise them and reward them with hugs or treats. Always set kitty up for success and you’ll have a much happier home. Remember, you might like the scent of all those scented litters, but you’re not the one trapped inside a small enclosure with them. The litterbox should be attractive to kitty, not necessarily you. 

 

 Litter Robot Open Air III with Garfield Cat Litter

Litter Robot Open Air III with Garfield Cat Litter.

 

 

 

Whew, That’s a lot of infurmation and we just barely scratched the surface. MOL But, we’ve got a give away to get too. So, tell us ‘bout your litterbox or favorite litter in the comments and then paw the Enter Here graphic fur your chance to win a bag of Garfield Cat Litter fur yourself. And don’t furget, you can ketch up on any post you may have missed by clicking the links below. Send your questions to us by commenting below or sending us an email.

 

 

Give away entry graphic

         

          Don’t furget the Blessing Train sissy. Our blessing today is the wonderful companies that allow us to pass a blessing along thru give aways. And, a pawsum mommy who cares more ‘bout us likin’ our litterbox than her.

 

Blessing train sm4   

 

 

Till the next time………………………………………..Be Blest!!!

 

Dezi: Vibrant Blue 

Raena: Navy Blue 

 

Luv and Hugs and Kitty Kisses

 

Deztinee and RaenaBelle

 

Service Cats

What to Look For      Training Foundations      Train Kitty To Massage

Smelling Disease      Do You Need One      Who Bears the Cost

Housing Laws & Exceptions      Accommodations & Common Sense

When the Handler Dies      Proper Training Methods Pt. 1 & Pt. 2

Easiest Task to Train      Getting Kitty Ready for an Outing

Discipline: Stop Countersurfing Kitty      Internal Disputes

Calling Emergency Help      Just What Is Kitty Capable of

Shad: Original Service Cat      Harness, Vest, Leash or Stroller

Dezi, the Wheelchair & Chest      Round and Round We Go

Tumble & Fall Response      Raena Calls for Help

The Rest of the Story     Raena & the Wheelchair Pt. 1 Pt. 2 Pt. 3 Pt. 4

When to Train      Explaining Rewards & Kitty’s Feelings

Stop Kitty’s Begging     Calling For Help Options Pt. 1

Medicating Kitty

Training the Pig Headed, Stallion Strong, Submissive Pup & Conniving Cat

Cats Love Training & Social Media Downfalls

Reintegrating the Scared or Bullied Cat      There’s No Bully Cat Breed

Going for a Walk When in a Wheelchair     Calming the Tiger Pt.1 Pt. 2 Pt. 3

Surviving A Remodel      Taming A Feral Cat

Designer Cats & Scent      DNA Doesn’t Change      Fighting or Posturing

Clicker Training & Operant Conditioning      Wheelchair Training

Basic Training Continues      Managing Without A Wheelchair

Are Spray Bottles Effective      Hands Are Not Toys

Does My Cat Need A Friend      Helping Your Bullied Shy Cat

Why Cats Scratch      Halloween Safety      Stop Cord Chewing

Pica: Unusual Habits     Holiday Safety Tips

Did You Say Garfield

Meowllo everypawdy, it’s finally Furiday. Today we’re gonna talk ‘bout our pawdee boxes. Yep dat’s right, me said our pawdee boxes. Your all wonderin’ why, cuz you know me likes me’s purrivacy, and we haven’t told ya’ anythin’ ‘bout Raena’s pawdee box habits. Well, let me ‘splain. We recently got to try a new litter, and well ya’ know litter goes in pawdee boxes. Most of ya’ know dat we’ve tried a few litters but we always go back to da same thing mommy’s been usin’ fur over 20 years. So, let me tell ya’ ‘bout this new litter we tried. And stay tuned, cuz 7 Pets is lettin’ me have a mega pawsum give away. 

 Dezi on shower chair

Furst, let me tell ya’ ‘bout little Raena’s pawdee box habits. Or should me say, lack of. You know we told ya’ dat when mommy picked her up she and da place reeked of urine. Mommy was told dat she was usin’ da cheapest nastiest litter on da market, altho’ mommy didn’t see any such pawdee box anywhere. Never fear, mommy’s never had a kitty turn their nose up at our regular litter. Well guess what? Raena used da piddle pad ‘stead of da pawdee box. Oh she got in da pawdee box alright, but stead of doin’ her business, she wanted to play. Yuck Can you ‘magine a kitty playin’ in da pawdee box? Disssssgustin’!!!

 Raena enjoys her first boxRaena laying on the Garfield Cat litter in box

   It was clean sissy. What’s so disgustin’ ‘bout dat?

Oh Raena, clean or not, ya’ don’t play where ya’, well, you know.

   But I didn’t, you know, so it was like a clean sand box. 

Whatever Raena.

Anyways, mommy finally got Raena to use da pawdee box so when it came time to try da new litter, she got a bit nervous. You know, was she gonna turn back da clock to when Raena wouldn’t use da pawdee box? Would me refuse to use da pawdee box? Mommy shouldn’t have worried so much. After all, with a name like Garfield Cat Litter, what self respectin’ cat wouldn’t like it?. Since mommy was a bit nervous she decided to add da Garfield Cat litter to our regular litter and mix it up. So she opened a bag of da Ultra Clump Grand and poured it over the top of our regular litter. Befur mommy could get da scoop to mix it up, Raena stuck her nose in to check it out. Me was checkin’ out da bag. So mommy grabbed da camera and started snap, snap, snappin’ away. And did you know Raena didn’t even care dat mommy was takin’ fotos? Dat’s right, she jumped in da pawdee box and went wee with da flashy box just a flashin’. No shame, me tells ya’, no shame.

 Raena chaecking out the Garfield Cat litter

   I needed to go sissy. And besides, I haves enuff furs to hide mines girly pawrts. And mommy says we Ragdolls squat till we touch da litter.

 Raena using the litter box

Yeah, whatever Raena.

Well, me waited till mommy put da camera away befur me went and took care of business. But me did go right after. Me likes da new litter. It’s not hard on da paws and it’s not so lightweight dat me sinks to da bottom of da box. It doesn’t have any smell and it clumps well and is flushable. It’s made from natural plant- based renewable ingredients and has natural odor control. Garfield Cat litter comes in 2 textures. Da furst is called Bio Ultra Clump Grand. Da litter granules are about da size of regular corn, wheat or clay litter. Da other size is called Bio Ultra Clump Tiny. Da tiny is almost da texture of sand. It also has no scent, can support da weight of a big kitty, is clumping and flushable. We didn’t notice any dust when mommy poured it in our boxes and there’s no sign of it on da floor. Da granules are a white to milky color. Because there’s no actual color to da litter, it can help monitor any changes in your cat’s urine. So me gives da Garfield Cat litter 4 paws up. Obviously Raena does too. So what about mommy?

 Raena looking at the Garfield cat litter

Raena looking at the Garfield Cat litter

I love it too girls. Of course I love anything that ya’ll like and will use. But even when I was pouring it into the litter boxes I was hoping ya’ll would like it, because there wasn’t any perfumey smells or dust smacking me in the face. And I really like that it’s not all over the floor. Altho’ it clumps really well it doesn’t seem to stick to ya’ll’s fur either. I really like that I can monitor any urine changes; and of course my favorite thing is that it’s flushable. So two thumbs up from me. We’ll be getting more Garfield Clumping Litter.

 Dezi on shower chair watching Raena use the litter box

Thanks mommy. So now we get to da bestest pawrt. Da wonderful peeps over at 7 Pets are allowing me to give away 2 bags each to 5 U.S. residents. Dat’s right, 5 of you living in da U.S. will be trying out the Garfield Clumping Litter in your own pawdee boxes soon. You can choose between da Ultra Clump Grand or Ultra Clump Tiny. You’ll get 2 bags of your choice.

 

 

Enter Here

Me’s gonna wrap it up now and head on over to Rascal and Rocco’s fur da Pet Parade. Everypawdy enter da give away and enjoy your weekend. 

Do you wish it were easier to monitor your cats urine?

Do you prefer scented or non scented litter? 

Till da next time………………………………..Be Blest!!!

Disclaimer: We were compensated for writing this post. However, all opinions are our own. We only bring products we use or have tried ourselves and feel would be of interest to you our readers and friends.

Luv and hugs and Kitty Kisses

Deztinee and RaenaBelle 

We’re Havin’ a Give Away

OMC Weez havin’ ow very first ever review and give away.  And we are so excited to be duin’ this cuz we alweady use da purroduct weez reviewin’.  It be SwheatScoop Natural Clumping Litter.  Weez hav talked ‘bout it afur on lots of occasions, but this time weez gunna give one of you da oppurrtunity to twy it out fur yous selff. Or maybe you alweady use it and kuld use a bag.  And it’s not just any bag, it’s da 40 pound Multi-Cat formula. 

 SwheatScoop.com

Fur those of you hoo awen’t furmiliar wiff SwheatScoop let me tell ya’ ‘bout it.  It’s made fwum mostly U.S. sourced secondary wheat.  Dat’s da wheat dat wusn’t good enuff fur bakin’ and puttin’ in flour, but still 100% natural wheat.  No purrfumes which we cats hate.  No chemicals and is 100% bio- degradable.  Safe fur septic systems (accept Ca. where it’s not legal) and  da compost pile (so long as it’s not used on edible plants).  And ifin kitty ( or doggy, kiddo, etc.) accidentally ingests it, it’s 100% safe.  You know all those clumpin’ clay litters on da market?  They clump up like rocks, wight?  Well hav you ever wunnered just what they wuz duin’ inside yous kitties (dog)  wet intestines?  As a former Vet Tech mommy kuld tell you sum pawful stories (but dat’s not what this posty be bout).

 litterbox with SwheatScoop

SwheatScoop clumps just as well as those and actually better.  And if you awe a “flusher” (down da toilet) dat hawd clump of wheat bweaks up nicely when it hits da water in da toilet.  Just use a little common sense and don’t over fill.  In udder words, ifin yous got 3 or more kitties yous scoopin’ up after don’t put all of it in da toilet at da same time and expect everyfin’ to be fine.  Get weady fur an overflow.  MOL  But one clump at a time…no purrawlem.  Ifin yous have a kitty dat pees geysers, yous might wanna bweak up da clump a bit, but again, no purrawlem.  SwheatScoop dusn’t weally hav much of a smell until kitty uses it.  And fur a bwief moment, (and this is mommys descwiption) it smells like fwesh baked bwead.  Then da smell is gone and no more odor.  And it keeps da odors away naturally.  Again, No smelly purrfumes. And ifin yous innewested in da science of why wheat is so pawsum yous can check it out here  

 dw Lexi in litterbox

Of Course ifin yous worried ‘bout bein’ gween and duin’ good fur da planet then yous can’t go wrong wiff SwheatScoop.  Bein’ biodegwadable and made fwum renewable, sustainable wesources it’s ‘bout as gween and good fur da planet as they come.  

Scroll across da fotos fur da descwiption.

And SwheatScoop  is readily acceptted by most cats and is wecommended by Vets.  They even give back to da community of kitties in need wiff their Swheat Shares purrogwam.  They choose 12 wescues a year and  each mumff purrvides them wiff 2000 pounds of litter and adoption kits dat follow adopted kitties to their furever homes. 

Awe you still on da fence?  Well da only fing left is to let yous twy it yous selff.  And then you and yous kitty make da choice to make da switch.  Weez givin’ away a 40 pound bag of da Multi Cat SwheatScoop.  Now dat’s a pawfully big bag to be shippin’ so what you will weceive is a coupon fur your furee bag dat you can get anywhere SwheatScoop is sold.  Ifin yous not know whether it’s available in yous awea or not, visit SwheatScoops store finder to locate a wetailer near you.  Just leave a comment tellin’ us yous wuld like to enter tween now and Furiday 12/19/14, and weez’ll put yous name in a random selector and pick a winner.  

 Deztinee MERRY CHRISTMAS - 2HEoW-1d5 - normal

Now a little news ‘bout upcomin’ postys.  Weez did get a kupple comments and a foo emails wunnewin’ ‘bout mommy smokin’ out da house wiff da fireplace.  Even tho’ it wuz afur Lexi and meez time, there were so many wunnewin’ ‘bout it dat weez will be tellin’ da story.  And weez got lots of you wantin’ to hear ‘bout me dwivin’ mommy and me into da snow, so weez’ll be tellin’ dat too.  Hmmmmm  Me finks meez stawtin’ to see a pattern. Me finks yous all like to hear ‘bout ow boo boos. MOL  Dat’s okay, weez got lots of ‘em. 

Anyways, till da nex time……………Be Blest!!!

 

Luv and Hugs and Kitty Kisses

   Dezi and Lexi

 

disclaimer: We received a 40 pound bag of Multi Cat SwheatScoop Litter for this review. It did not affect our opinion in any way. Mommy has been using SwheatScoop since it’s inception over 20 years ago.

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