Digital Spy

Search Digital Spy
 

DS Forums

 
 
 

Moving from litter tray to garden


Reply
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old 01-02-2013, 17:31
Geowitch
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: East Anglia
Posts: 282

My two girls are now 5 and a half months old and i feel it is time that they started eliminating outside as we live in the country with a largish garden which they spend time in. I've had kittens before and it was little problem but Polly and Maisie are very attached to their litter tray!. I tried moving it to close by the back door but twice there have been little piles of poo where it used to be. Do I carry on trying to get them to go outside or give in for the sake of having clean cats? Maybe when it is warmer the problem will disappear.
Geowitch is offline   Reply With Quote
Please sign in or register to remove this advertisement.
Old 01-02-2013, 17:49
dollymarie
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Brissle!!!
Posts: 3,291
The last couple of weeks one of my 8 month old kittens has taken to running in from outside, having a wee in the litter tray and running back outside again (the cowbag )

My other kitten never goes inside anymore, and the one weeing in the tray is still pooing outside. I think she's just being a madam they get locked in from 7pm to 7am, which is why I'm happy still having a litter tray.

Can you put the tray back where it was, and move it slowly across the room bit by bit, so it gets closer to the door slowly?
dollymarie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2013, 18:33
Muze
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1,610
I don't agree with you encouraging your cats to eliminate outside tbh, it may be more rural but cats can roam long distances.

Keep the litter tray and get a cat flap if you must let them out.
Muze is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2013, 21:18
SCDchick
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Posts: 1,176
I don't agree with you encouraging your cats to eliminate outside tbh, it may be more rural but cats can roam long distances.

Keep the litter tray and get a cat flap if you must let them out.
Agreed
SCDchick is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-02-2013, 21:46
Geowitch
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: East Anglia
Posts: 282
But i do want to let them out, I have no reason to keep them as house cats and they love being in the garden and climbing trees. I have a cat flap, have had it for the last 25 years and our cats have free access in and out. At the moment the kittens are coming in to use their litter tray and i thought it was getting towards the time when they could start going in the garden. I remember our last kitten was so attached to her litter tray that it ended up in the garden with a tarpaulin over it to keep the rain off! Anyway i shall follow dollymarie's suggestion and move it more gradually.
Geowitch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 15:21
milmol
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,524
I would like to be kept updated on this Geowitch, this is the next stage of my cat-owning dilemmas!!! My two now go outside (one loves it, the other has her moments) but there is no evidence from the daily litter changing that they are going to the loo outside. Having said that, with the weather they still only go out for up to 45 mins or so at a time so far.

As they were picked up originally as strays/abandoned I obviously know that they know that outdoors makes a great loo so not sure how to get them to make this leap.

They have been so meticulously clean from day 1 in using their tray I don't want to do anything to unsettle them like moving it . Maybe I'm being a bit naive again just expecting them to go outside for the loo when the tray option remains.
milmol is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 15:45
Spot
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2002
Location: Norwich, Tacolneston tx
Posts: 20,005
No experience myself, but I have a video on cat care which suggests putting somwething like foil down to discourage a cat from using a particular area. I think orange peel is another thing they don't like - others will probably have other suggestions. They will hopefully prefer the litter tray, which you should move gradually nearer to the cat flap, then eventually put it just outside, then sprinkle some cat litter on the area of the garden you would prefer them to use.
Spot is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 16:26
Shrike
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Nottingham
Posts: 8,676
It may depend on your soil. If you have heavy, often wet, clayey soil I think the cat will always prefer the litter. Litter is very close to the kind of soil where the evolved in Africa after all.
I've also noticed cats like to 'wipe' their paws after digging - again this is more effective after digging in litter compared to earth.

Personally I'd rather my cat goes in the tray so I can dispose of it and know its gone, rather than have mystery smells and unexpected turds dotted around the garden
Shrike is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 06-02-2013, 20:57
flakecake
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 1,790
What I did with mine was section a little piece of my garden off with a very low bordering, as you would a flowerbed, dug it over and filled it with fresh soil. It was funny, as they jumped in for a wee before I was even finished . Every little while I empty out all the old soil and fill it with new. 7 years later, I still keep a litter tray in the house but it's never used, apart from the one upstairs, my 3rd cat is a totally indoor cat, just doesn't want to go out, and thats fine with me.
flakecake is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-02-2013, 08:49
milmol
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,524
Obviously the normal way is to get to the point where the tray is by the back door. This isnt going to work for me as my back door (with their flap) is in my kitchen which is galley style so no room for a tray Any ideas how you would handle this?
milmol is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-02-2013, 09:18
milmol
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,524
Geowitch, any progress?
I would really appreciate any help with this issue. One of mine appears to be using the garden now but the other one is much less keen on going out (she does go outside, just that its usually too much effort!) and she is still using the tray.

The layout of my house doesn't allow for moving the tray nearer the door. (Currently in spare room upstairs ... downstairs goes into narrow hallway, then through to narrow kitchen where the back door is.)

Am I just going to have to go for the "cold turkey" route with this at some point? Or is that a no-no
milmol is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-02-2013, 09:55
elliecat
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 6,516
The last couple of weeks one of my 8 month old kittens has taken to running in from outside, having a wee in the litter tray and running back outside again (the cowbag )

My cat does that, I would love her to go outside but she goes out and comes in to use the litter tray it really annoys me. If I could get rid of the litter tray I could move her bowls out of the way and we would stop stepping in her water bowl.
elliecat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-02-2013, 10:25
Shrike
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Nottingham
Posts: 8,676
The last couple of weeks one of my 8 month old kittens has taken to running in from outside, having a wee in the litter tray and running back outside again (the cowbag )
My cat does that, I would love her to go outside but she goes out and comes in to use the litter tray it really annoys me. ...
Our family cat did that all his life - much to my mums' annoyance

I've only just started letting mine out, but I will make a 'toilet' area in the garden for her - though I'm not too bothered about it and since I keep her in after dark realistically she's always going to need a tray available.
Shrike is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 15-02-2013, 19:28
Tess-g
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Lost
Posts: 9,349
Aren't they difficult little darlings

Dexter, our 9 month old, just suddenly stopped using his tray at about 7 1/2 months. Nothing would persuade him to go anywhere near it. He was a 'big' boy now and was using the garden! He also doesn't like rain....cue the first rainy day and he was running around crying with back legs almost crossed.

Showed him that his tray was still there in the kitchen - no chance.

Put his tray outside under cover - no chance.

Husband puts on his waterproof jacket, gets brolly, picks up kitten and carries him, undercover of the brolly, to the shrubby bit of the garden and posts him under....instant relief

He's better now when it rains that he knows he can make a dash for the drier bit of the garden.
Tess-g is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-02-2013, 19:33
stud u like
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: The Sunny Side Of The Street
Posts: 37,889
Kittens need to be taught to dig holes outside. Sometimes they don't apply indoor digging with outdoor.

They also can be slap dash and need to be shown that it is not good enough sometimes.

Ah the joys of their first outdoor lavatory lessons!
stud u like is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 15-02-2013, 21:37
milmol
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,524
Tomorrow I'm at home all day. What do you think my chances are if I just shut off the litter tray room and keep an eye out for the girls trying to get in there?

I worry because the one who is more reluctant (lazy) to go outside is the one who hardly ever makes a peep of sound... she doesn't cry for food or anything so there won't be any meows or anything I will just have to be on my toes and open the door for her at any sign of needing the loo

milmol is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 15-02-2013, 21:55
dollymarie
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Brissle!!!
Posts: 3,291

Husband puts on his waterproof jacket, gets brolly, picks up kitten and carries him, undercover of the brolly, to the shrubby bit of the garden and posts him under....instant relief
Sorry but this made me laugh - a lot!

I just have visions of a man with a brolly following the cat about holding the brolly so his lordship can do his business, like those people who follow the royal family about, just holding their brollies for them
dollymarie is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-02-2013, 12:09
Geowitch
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: East Anglia
Posts: 282
Sorry but I have made no progress at all so far I did move the tray to the laundry room and positioned it near the back door . Stupidly I put the food tray where the litter tray had been and very soon a poo had been deposited there! The weather was really awful at the time so I went back to square one and gave up for a while. Now the weather has improved they are out much of the day running around the garden but they still come dashing in to use the litter tray. By the amount I would say they have not yet discovered the possibility that the garden is a huge litter tray! I've kept cats for decades and never had this problem before but I must start using the tactics others have suggested.
Geowitch is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-02-2013, 13:35
milmol
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,524
Thanks for reporting back Geowitch, i'm not sure i'm making a lot of progress either... reading on here it makes me realise that our little darlings are true creatures of habit - habits that will take a long time to break!!!

I did manage to distract Gwennie this morning when she was heading to her tray, we all went downstairs and I closed the stairs off and opened the back door to a beautiful day for them to run and explore ... didn't quite happen as I planned tho. She seemed to forget about her planned trip to the loo and started mooching around downstairs sitting on the back door step occasionally for a minute or two. Eventually she did go out for about 10 mins and hasnt been to her tray since she came back. who knows, really?!

ETA: It is now 2 minutes since i made that post and i can hear her having a real good dig in her tray upstairs
ah well, on we go!!!
milmol is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 16-02-2013, 18:53
bazaar1
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 7,973
They are only young op. they will probably work it out in time. My two just ignored the tray in the end, and sorted themselves out, the weather probably hasn't helped tbh - just leave them be, maybe put an extra one out side and show them where it is, then be patient!
bazaar1 is offline Follow this poster on Twitter   Reply With Quote
Old 16-02-2013, 19:14
MarellaK
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Herts
Posts: 2,223
They are only young op. they will probably work it out in time. My two just ignored the tray in the end, and sorted themselves out, the weather probably hasn't helped tbh - just leave them be, maybe put an extra one out side and show them where it is, then be patient!
I agree about being patient. When the weather is warmer the cats will want to stay a lot longer outside, they will get the chance to see other cats toileting and they will work it out. Years ago, my kitten Tabitha had the same problem - she loved to go outside but would run in for a few minutes to use her tray, then run back outside again - until one day I was outside with her and saw her attentively watching one of the neighbour's cats use the communal garden, digging really well, it was like the penny had dropped and she rarely ever used a tray again up until her death at nearly 16. She was a brilliant digger and buried her poo very well in my garden borders unlike my current cats who think it's acceptable to leave their poo exposed on my lovely lawn - I don't think they were taught very well by their mums and probably didn't have very good 'role models'.

My Millie has been using a tray since late October when the fireworks started but she's starting to go out more now - still using the tray at least once a day but the situation is definitely improving. Hopefully, nothing else will spook her outside in the coming months.
MarellaK is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-02-2013, 10:06
ishAppy
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 88
You must have a cast flap if your going to do this.
ishAppy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-02-2013, 10:28
TWS
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Devon
Posts: 6,416
I think every cat owner should keep one to two litter trays inside for their cats even if they do choose to let them out. So i cannot see the problem myself
TWS is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 17-02-2013, 18:34
bazaar1
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 7,973
You must have a cast flap if your going to do this.
Why? I don't have a cat flap, (generally use the window but when it's cold, it is closed) and we have no issues
bazaar1 is offline Follow this poster on Twitter   Reply With Quote
Old 17-02-2013, 18:39
milmol
Forum Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2009
Posts: 3,524
I think every cat owner should keep one to two litter trays inside for their cats even if they do choose to let them out. So i cannot see the problem myself
i doubt anyone is suggesting depriving our cats of the option of a tray indoors in case of weather/being indoors at night but with two large cats using the trays full time, cost (15pw) and time of changing it in full every day (which is the case at the moment) are the two main issues for me!

I agree with posters above though maybe this is the wrong time of year to be panicing about it or rushing it. In better weather no doubt they will be outside much more naturally anyway
milmol is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply



Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

 
Forum Jump


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 11:09.