How to train your cat to use the… Toilet?
Yes friends. You read the title correctly, it is in fact possible to train your beloved feline to use the toilet. Like you, we were pessimistic, until we did our research. Not only is it possible but it comes with a number of benefits.
Those that have owned a cat will agree that cleaning a litter box is far from great and can be very unhygienic. Maintaining a litter box can also be expensive, not to mention time consuming.
What if I told you that there was actually a training program and a product out there that could train your cat in 8 weeks, to use a human toilet? (Bet you’re thinking you wish you’d thought of the idea first!)
WHY TRAIN YOUR CAT TO USE THE TOILET?
Let’s start off by talking about cats and their hygiene shall we?
Think about it, your cat walks over to its litter box, scratches around and shifts stuff around for a few seconds, finds the right spot- and does its business.
It then shuffles some of the litter over its business and jumps out of the box.
Where does it go next? Well, when you’re looking it walks around your lounge room and then maybe jumps up and curls up on your lap. Cute huh?
Now, lets take a look at where Whiskers goes when you’re not looking. Firstly, you left the can of cat food open up on the bench, so of course she’s going to seize the opportunity for some extra indulgence. When she’s finished with the now empty can of cat food, she jumps off the bench and decides its time for a nap. Where best than your pillow? Or maybe your chest? Lovely.
Have I made my point? Whiskers, as much as you love her, is downright filthy.
But lets not blame poor Whiskers, because she doesn’t know any better.. call it ‘animal instinct’.
There is of course the added benefit of saving money, as we know, kitty litter can be expensive. And then there is of course the fact that time is precious. How precious? Let’s break it down:
It is recommended that kitty litter trays be completely cleaned twice a week. This entails cleaning out the litter, wiping down the tray and filling it with new litter. Twice a week at approximately 15 minutes a time equals 30 minutes a week. Times this by 52 weeks in a year and you are left with 26 hours worth of cleaning poop. Not to mention the 5 minutes twice a day you spend scooping out Whiskers’ poop and flushing it down the toilet. Times this by 7 days a week and you end up spending 70 minutes a week on this task.
Yearly, you would end up spending in total, approximately 82 hours catering for Whiskers’ hygiene. I could think of a million things I could better spend my time on!
HAVE I GOT YOUR ATTENTION YET?
Cats are particularly smart animals and pick things up very quickly. According to Aston Lau, author of ‘The Toilet Trained Cat’ it is infect possible to have Whiskers trained as young as 6 months old and in as little as 4-6 weeks.
“The benefits are obvious: having a toilet-trained cat eliminates all litter box odors. You improve the health and hygiene of everyone in your household” says Lau, who has trained not only his own cat, but countless family and friends’ cats with great success.
If Whiskers proves to have great balance and is already litter box trained, then human toilet training is for her. Follow this training regime and Whiskers will be next in line to use the toilet:
- It is recommended that you move Whiskers’ litter box near your toilet, in order to introduce the concept along with the new smells & environment. This is called the “adjustment phase”
- You then gradually raise Whiskers’ litter box (aided by a plastic step or phone books) slowly each day until her litter box is at the same height as your toilet. Each time you raise the litter box, remember to take some of the kitty litter out of the box.
- Move the box onto the toilet seat (half way initially) until she is used to the concept. When she is comfortable, move the box completely over the toilet seat.
- Replace her litter box with a training box. (Purchased online or in certain pet stores) Make sure to clean the litter in the training box after each use and sprinkle catnip into the clean litter.
- After a few more days of this, remove one of the rings from her training box. Repeat every few days until all the rings are gone. (The purpose of this is to get Whiskers used to the sight/smell of the toilet water.)
- Make sure to flush the toilet each time Whiskers does her business. Apparently some cats are “shy” about pooping on top of their wee. (“Shy” – More like prissy if you ask me!)
KITTY LITTER IS FOR KWITTERS
If you’re after a quick and easy way of toilet training Whiskers, the “Litter Kwitter” just may be the product for you both. Vets, animal behaviorists and cat breeders developed the Australian, award winning Litter Kwitter, and it has even been endorsed by the RSPCA!
“If you own a cat, this product helps the cat to be house trained with ease and is one of the best pet innovations I have seen in years” said Mark Townsend, RSPCA CEO.
WHAT’S IN THE BOX?
For $69.95, you get:
- A white seat, which sits on top of the trays
- Red, amber and green insert trays
- An instruction manual
- A step-by-step 30-minute training guide on how to use the Litter Kwitter effectively.
The Litter Kwitter program takes up to 8 weeks to train Whiskers how to use your toilet, but sees a neater and easier transition that the prementioned process.
You start off by using the red disc, which is used in the litter tray and placed next to your toilet.
The Amber disc is used next and has a small hole in the middle, which is inserted in your toilet. This gets Whiskers used to “perching” on the edge of the toilet seat.
And lastly, the green insert is used in your toilet and has a bigger hole, which encourages Whiskers’ balancing skills.
The last step sees Whiskers being a big girl, by not having to use the green disc. She is now able to balance perfectly on your toilet seat and do her business unaided! (Make sure to give Whiskers a treat for her success!)
The discs are actually made from the same material used to make a fireman’s hardhat, so it’s durable, sturdy and capable of holding Whiskers safely. (Even if she has been getting into the cakes and pies.) So, rest assured, Whiskers will not fall into the bowl due to cheap and nasty materials!
The Litter Kwitter is available online as well as a number of pet stores around Australia. (See website for further details.)
WEIRD? OR INGENIOUS?
A rather interesting concept, to say the least. Some may say that the concept is bizarre, or unnatural even. I say, if you’ve ever had to clean up after a cat you’d understand why the thought of this concept might be slightly appealing.
The thought of no more smells, no more time wasting and most importantly, no more germ spreading is very appealing!
If you have the patience and an open mind, then toilet training your feline friend could be the answer. This cat owner certainly thinks so!