Why Is My Cat Sleeping within the Litter Box_ A Cat Behaviorist Offers Us the Scoop

Why Is My Cat Sleeping within the Litter Box_ A Cat Behaviorist Offers Us the Scoop

Cats possess an enviable expertise for with the ability to sleep nearly anyplace. But when your grownup kitty all of a sudden begins snoozing of their litter field, your admiration could swap to concern—and with good cause, says Amelia Wieber, an authorized cat habits guide and the proprietor of Caring Conduct LLC. That is as a result of litter field catnaps generally is a signal of a much bigger downside and might even create issues of their very own.

Causes Why Your Cat is Sleeping within the Litter Field

Whereas your cat could merely discover her litter field to be a comfy and secure house (particularly if it has been not too long ago cleaned), it is sometimes not regular for felines to sleep in what is basically their rest room. The doable causes behind this habits are many, however Wieber separates them into two important classes: medical and behavioral.


In case your cat abruptly abandons her mattress to sleep within the litter field, Wieber says you will need to contact your veterinarian to rule out an underlying medical challenge first. She says many cats instinctively cover when sick, so your cat could also be feeling poorly and the litter field is just their hiding place of selection. Moreover, there are specific sicknesses that may hold them tethered to the bathroom, corresponding to:

In case your older cat is sleeping within the litter field, it may very well be an indication of arthritis. Painful joints could make motion harder, and your cat could discover that the litter field is simpler to entry or get out and in of than their standard napping nook. One other doable root trigger in older cats is cognitive dysfunction, or dementia. Your cat could merely be confused and disoriented, inflicting the strains to blur between the place they rest room and the place they loosen up.


We all know we’re preaching to the choir right here, however cats are delicate, observant creatures. And as such, they will turn out to be confused for a wide range of causes. When tensions are excessive, cats typically retreat to cover in areas that really feel acquainted and safe. And since litter packing containers are sometimes positioned in out-of-the-way places, Wieber says your cat might even see it because the most secure spot to flee no matter’s bothering them, significantly if the litter field is your cat’s solely lined hiding house.

So in case your veterinarian guidelines out any medical causes, you may need to discover doable sources of stress in your cat’s setting. These embrace issues like:

Transferring or transforming

Including a brand new member of the family (each human and furry)

Competitors between cats in multi-cat households

Loud sounds (e.g. events, close by building, storms)

Typically talking, something that disrupts your cat’s regular each day routine may disrupt their regular habits, together with the place they sleep.

If the pet in query is a not too long ago adopted kitten or grownup cat who’s spent their life throughout the tight confines of a cage, they could have merely grown accustomed to sleeping close to (or in) their litter field. Or within the case of the kitten, they could nonetheless be studying the distinction between the restroom and the place they relaxation.

Can Sleeping within the Litter Field Make Your Cat Sick?

Sadly, it could actually.

Litter field sleeping is not only a potential signal of a much bigger downside. The act itself may cause points to your cat. “It is actually not best for a cat to sleep within the space the place she urinates and defecates,” Wieber explains. “It might result in bacterial infections of the eyes, ears, and maybe the bladder.” Pores and skin infections can happen as properly. Furthermore, she notes that if litter will get caught in your cat’s fur whereas they’re catching some z’s, grooming might switch these clay chunks to their digestive tract and trigger a blockage.

The right way to Cease Your Cat From Sleeping within the Litter Field

The way you get your cat to cease sleeping within the litter field will rely on why your feline companion is there within the first place. The trigger dictates the repair.

1. Go to the Vet

Step one is to go to your veterinarian to allow them to verify your cat for any underlying medical points. Needless to say even when the trigger is medical, chances are you’ll have to make some environmental modifications as properly.

All cats want snug hiding locations, says Wieber—together with choices which might be up off of the bottom. She provides that that is particularly essential in the event you’ve not too long ago added a brand new pet to your property.

Try the Indoor Pet Initiative at The Ohio State College to overview your cat’s setting and proper any deficiencies.

2. Seek the advice of a Behaviorist

Should you suspect the principle impetus behind your cat’s new sleeping spot is stress or another habits challenge, Wieber says chances are you’ll need to associate with an authorized cat habits guide or board-certified veterinary habits specialist to pinpoint what’s inflicting the unrest. “They are going to be ready that can assist you desensitize your cat to stressors that can not be utterly mitigated [e.g. a new baby],” she explains, “and may help you create different resting locations to your kitty.”

Whatever the trigger, do not count on a quick repair. It could take some time earlier than your cat feels extra snug sleeping someplace else. Within the meantime, you should utilize kitty cuddle instances as a possibility to each join together with your cat and take away any litter that is gotten caught of their fur mid-snooze.


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