Cats are one of the domestic animals that are commonly kept as pets. Senior cats are, in layman’s language, old cats. A cat is considered to be a senior cat if it is 11 years and above. A few years back could not live for, but thanks to better nutrition, veterinary services, and even proper home care, cats now have a prolonged lifespan.
A litter box is like an inside lavatory for cats. Owning the best litter box for senior cats is important for both owners and senior cats. The litter box is generally a tray or container that contains absorbent materials such as sand and is used to collect animal excrement. There are best litter boxes for senior cats reviews and buying guides.
What is the Best Litter Box for Senior Cats?
Why Do Senior Cats Need a Change in Their Litter Box?
As it is well-known, cats are very clean animals, especially when it comes to their sanitary health. Cats are very picky when it comes to where they excrete. The key reason why changing a senior cat’s litter box is essential is to deter the cat from going to excrete elsewhere within the house, such as the living room or even on the couches.
If one owns a plastic litter box, it should be replaced as often as possible or at least once a year. This is because plastic scratches effortlessly; hence, the scratches can easily compile bacteria and even odors.
Continuous cleaning of their litter box also boosts the cat’s immune system. Accumulating cat’s waste products in the litter box over a long period can cause health risks to your cat, and even you ran at risk of contracting infections from your cat. It is essential to change a senior cat’s litter box to avoid spending a lot of money on veterinary services and prolong your cat’s life.
The Best Litter Box for Senior Cats Reviews
Senior cats require special care considering their body joints and muscles are weak. So, even when buying a litter box, you need to consider their convenience when accessing the litter box to use. A good litter box for senior cats should not be strenuous when accessing to get in and out; hence, it should have a low entry design. So, if you are looking for the most favorable litter box for your senior cat, here is a review of the best models to consider buying.
The fact that this cat litter has steps for the cat to use when accessing the litter box ensures even the senior cat do not strain their muscles and joint to access the box. Also, the heavy-duty material construction guarantees durability even when used by a heavy cat. If your senior cat prefers using a litter in an enclosed area or private space, this litter box will still work for it.
The litter box has an enclosure design that ensures to secure the cat inside the box. The item is made of plastic materials that are super smooth to clean. You can clean the litter box steps using dumb clothe once the cat uses them.
If your cat uses the litter box often, I would still recommend this litter box model since it conceals all the smell in the box. The litter box is infused with a carbon filter essential for keeping the smell off. So, you can keep the litter box in the living room or an open area in your house.
This litter box’s low opening design makes it easy for senior cats to access in and out. Traditionally, this litter box is meant for kitties and senior cats that cannot access the litter boxes with raised walls. The entire unit measures 24 x 20 x 5 inches, a reasonable size to accommodate even the large cats.
This litter box may not work for messy cats considering it has an open design and has low walls, but it is quite convenient in terms of access and even cleaning. Another great feature about this litter box is you don’t need to strain your savings to acquire it. The litter box fits people who need a waste box for less than 50 dollars.
Is your senior cat too weak to climb a high surface, or it has arthritis? This litter box is designed to accommodate such pets. It has a high wall design, but the entry area features a low opening, so the cat can easily access in and out. This means that this litter box is also great for a kitten since it can comfortably access the litter box without your aid.
The litter box’s high walls ensure to contain the litter and other messes in the box, mainly if your cat is messy. Although the litter box is made of plastic materials, it has nonstick coating materials that prevent the litter from sticking on the walls.
So, you don’t need to struggle when eliminating dirt from the litter box. If your cat has a phobia of being in an enclosed area, this litter box will perfectly suit you because it has an open surface on the top.
The super-low entry point on this litter box ensures the cat does not have a hard time getting in and out of the litter box. However, the litter box is also safe for messy cats since other parts are super raised to make sure the litter does not drop on the floor. Is your cat too big?
This litter box measures 23.4 x 18.25 x 11 inches to comfortably accommodate large cats. Moving it to clean or setup is made easy with the side handles. Also, cleaning this litter box is easy since the messes do not stick on the plastic materials.
If you have a senior cat or a cat with an injury, this litter box is the best choice. It is crafted in a pan form with a super low entry door for easy getting in and out. Also, the litter box has a wide design such that even the large and huge cats can comfortably access and sit.
Still, you don’t need to deal with messes scattering on the carpet when the cat uses the litter box since it has super raised walls on other sides. So, even when your cat digs, you don’t need to deal with litter scattering on the floor.
Factors to Consider when Picking the Best Litter Box for Senior Cats
When picking the right litter box for senior cats, a lot of factors are brought into consideration. It is vital to ensure that no matter where or the type of litter box we have chosen, the senior cat is comfortable and happy. It is crucial to consider the following when selecting the appropriate and comfortable litter box for your senior cat;
Ask yourself a few questions before picking a litter box for your senior cat, is it easily accessible to the cat in question? Is the cat able to enter the litter box with ease? Thanks to modern designs and the people’s creativity, there are a lot of litter boxes out there. It is important to consider the flexibility of the cat before purchasing just any litter box. It is best to ensure that despite the litter box’s height, at least one of its sides should be lowered to ensure that the senior cat can easily get in the litter box.
– Size of the Litter Box and the Cat
It is also key to give much thought to the size of the litter box. Exactly how much waste do you intend the litter box to hold before considering changing it or even cleaning it? For senior cats, it is most advisable to go for oversized or large litter boxes. When selecting the litter box’s appropriate size to purchase for your senior cats, it is critical to note that some cats gain weight as they get older. If your cat has increased in size, get a litter box for large cats that it can fit in with ease and spacious enough to enable the cat to excrete in a comfortable environment.
– Location and the Inside Surface of the Litter Box
Just like humans, cats tend to get less active with age. It is essential to get a litter box placed anywhere in the house, precisely a place that does not require stairs to be accessed. This will, in turn, ensure that your cat does not struggle to reach the litter box. The litter box’s inside surface also plays a crucial role in Selecting a litter box. It is important to study a senior cat’s characteristics to acknowledge the type of surface that will be comfortable with your cat. Senior cats tend to like soft or smooth surfaces in their litter boxes, but depending on the kind of cat, it is important to get a surface that suits their desires.
What Type of Litter Boxes Are Designed for Senior Cats?
Despite today’s markets offering a wide variety of litter boxes for cats, they haven’t considered the senior’s desires and needs. Some Senior cats avoid the litter boxes for several reasons, such as arthritis or aching joints; these conditions may make getting in and out of the litter box very painful. The best type of litter box suitable for senior cats is those that are lower and easy to access. It would also be considerate of you to place not only one but several litter boxes around the house, especially if you happen to own a large home.
Why Does My Old Cat Not Use the Litter Box Anymore?
Several reasons can lead to a cat not using their litterbox anymore. Despite their old age, other factors can contribute to them not using the litter box anymore. These are the factors that may include
Hard to Climb in and out
With age, cats tend to experience difficulty when performing simple tasks such as moving or even excretion. Depending on the type of litter box that is placed out for them, old cats May experience difficulty or be uncomfortable while using the litter boxes. It becomes challenging for senior cats to access litter boxes high or too small for their size. Most of the time, senior cats are usually tired to even move towards a litter box; therefore, it is important to place one close to the cats.
Deterioration of Internal Muscles
With age, cats are prone or rather run at a high risk of getting infections. This is due to their weakened immune system. Old cats are prone to attacks from diseases such as arthritis or cat scratch disease. Senior cats, specifically those 15 years and above, run at a high risk of getting arthritis. Arthritis leads to deterioration of muscles or, generally, muscle weakness in cats. The effects of arthritis, such as muscle weakness, may lead to other conditions such as limited joint mobility or even just the cats’ general weakness. This, in turn, leads to the senior cat not being able to access the litter box.
The term cognitive impairment implies the loss of memory. Even in old aged human beings, lots of memory is prevalent. This condition is also common in cats age 11 years and above. This condition is commonly referred to as feline cognitive dysfunction, Which affects the memory, learning ability, awareness, eyesight, and hearing perception of the cat. This condition may cause the cat to forget things such as its litter box and even use it.
How to Deal with a Litter Box Problem in Senior Cats?
There are many ways to tackle problems associated with the litter box and senior cats. Despite training your cats early or in advance to use the litter box, this knowledge may disappear with age. Hence there are several contingencies put in place to handle such problems in case they arise. Some of these contingencies include;
– Find a Suitable Type of Litter
There are several types of litter available today as compared to many years back. Some of the common types of litter may comprise clay, sand, wheat, and pine. It is vital to ensure that you provide your cat with the best cat litter that makes them feel comfortable. It is wise for senior cats to keep in mind that their taste and preferences change with age and time. Most old cats like and prefer soft litter. To find out what type of debris your senior cats prefer, put out several litter boxes containing various litter types and observe It for a few days to decide which best suits it.
– Move the Litter Box or Buy Two
As your cat ages, movement becomes more difficult for them. This is even worsened if you have a large home. If the house where the senior cat is present is big and comprises of many rooms or even several staircases, it becomes hard for the cat to access it’s litter box because it is usually tired most of the time. It is advisable to move the senior cats’ litter box to a place it mostly hangs around in the house or, to address the problem more effectively, buy other litter boxes. If you choose to buy other litter boxes, ensure that there is at least one in most houses.
– Get the Cat Litter Mats
Litter mats are pieces of cloth or materials placed near the cats’ litter boxes to basically collect any residue of the waste that the cat may drag out of the litter box. In case the litter box is small for the cat, the mat acts as a medium that catches the residue that may have fallen out of the litter box. Cat Litter mat is very easy to clean; they don’t involve a lot of work like the litter boxes. The litter boxes also help clean the cat’s paw, which ensures the cat doesn’t stain anything it steps on.
– Keep It Clean and Private
It is common knowledge that cats are among the cleanest animals on the entire planet. Despite their age, senior cats tend to maintain the same practice of cleanliness around them. It is considered a significant inconvenience to the cat if it’s litter box does not accomplish the same cleanliness level. As a result of maybe a slight delay in cleaning their litter boxes, the senior cats may resolve in doing their business elsewhere, even on the floor. The cats also do not enjoy sharing their litter boxes with other cats, and it is key to ensure that the litter boxes of senior cats are placed in private locations where only they can access them.
– Add Another Loo
If a senior cat exists where other cats also live, precisely younger cats, it is vital to ensure that it has its litter box. In most situations, young cats do not recognize coexistence in peace with older cats. This is because the younger cats tend to act as bullies towards the older cats. This is because the senior cats are often inactive, tired, and sickly; this makes them an easy target for bullying, specifically around the litter box. This may discourage the cat from using the litter box altogether. As a responsible cat owner, it is crucial to ensure that each cat has its litter box to prevent any waste from sing scattered all over the house.
– Provide a Shorter Box
With age comes whole new experiences and challenges for senior cats. Their muscles and stamina are affected. Hence some of the activities they used to perform, like jumping, become difficult to execute. As they get older, ensure that you try and change their litter boxes to suit their likings. Short litter boxes are highly recommended for senior cats. This type of litter box is advantageous in that they ensure the cat does not struggle when excreting.
– Cope with Cognitive Decline
As a cat owner, you should learn how to cope with your cat’s conditions, especially when it gets old. Strive to assist your cat during this period. Since the cat tends to forget many of the things learned previously, try and relearn a few things. Do as much as you can to help boost its memory by ensuring it’s active all the time.
Litter Box Alternatives for Senior Cats
For senior cats, the use of a litter box becomes even more difficult as time progresses. To ensure that the cat is in a friendly environment, get a comfortable crate for the senior cat to use. Look at a variety of options that fits the cat’s needs. Here are a few alternatives for litter boxes ;
Dog Litter Pans
The dog litter pans is a type of container that has one of it’s side super low. Their internal material is not that absorbent as other materials; however, their structure makes them most suitable for senior cats. Due to their muscles’ weakness, locomotion becomes difficult; lifting their muscles to get into the litter box may be challenging. The shallow entrance allows simple entry and exit in the litter box.
- Great for Senior Cats that can't cope with a traditional litter box. Rabbits and Ferrets too
- Great alternative for working families or apartment living.
- Helps to avoid accidents: the puppy always has a place to go, when you can't take them out.
- Choice of pan based on the size of your dog.
- Easy to use training guide included.
- Not suitable for dogs over 20 lbs.
- Requires training. If you can’t take the time to train, please do not buy this pan.
- Questions? Please write before ordering.
- Extremely sturdy construction. Will not buckle under the weight of heavy litter.
Plant Growing Trays
As the word suggests, these are trays used for agricultural purposes, like planting crops on a small scale. These trays come in a variety of sizes and shapes, but their key advantage is that they are usually large in size and low enough. This unique feature of plant growing trays makes them suitable for use primarily for senior cats. It is advisable to go for trays without drain holes to avoid urine or other materials from leaking out of the tray.
- Quantity 5 - Durable Plastic - NO Drain Holes
- Perfect for use as a drip tray, hydroponic growing and seed starting
- Approx: 21" by 11" (top measurement). 20" by 10" bottom of tray - See product description below for precise measurments
- Accomodates 20" x 10" Sure to Grow Hydroponic Grow Pads and Micro-Mats Perfectly
- Reusable - Great for Greenhouse, Seedlings, wheatgrass, microgreens and more.
Under-bed Storage Boxes
These are storage boxes sealed on both ends and store personal items such as shoes or even documents under the bed. These containers come in various shapes and sizes. Most of the bed storage containers come with both ends sealed; however, thanks to their unique design and material, they are easy to cut through and enable the cat owner to create a plan that fits the senior cat well.
- 50 Quart (12. 5 Gallon) Capacity
- Designed to fit under most beds
- Dimensions: 32. 50"L x 17. 75"W x 6. 50"H
- Buckle-up latches keep contents secure
- Clear lid and body help to easily identify contents
Litter Box Ramps
These are raised platforms mostly made of cardboard that provide easy access to a litter box. The ramps serve several purposes, even for younger cats. One of the critical advantages of litter box ramps is that they allow high-level litter boxes even for senior cats and are very easy to access.
Frequently Asked Questions:
1. Can you litter box train an older cat?
Contrary to saying you can’t teach an old dog new tricks, it is possible to litter box train an older cat. Though it may take a longer duration to train the cat, it is possible to train your senior cat to use a litter box. However, it is safe to say training an old cat is more challenging than training younger cats. To at least guarantee that your process is made at least simpler, try and create a familiar surrounding around the litter box, use an appropriate litter, and lower the box as much as possible.
2. Why would an older cat start pooping on the floor?
It is very much possible for an older cat to start excreting all over the house and floor. This is brought about by a number of factors, such as arthritis or muscle weakness. These conditions may bring about pain in the cats’ joints, preventing them from entering or exiting the litter box. Another situation is where the cat suffers from cognitive dissonance. This condition causes loss of memory for the cat, and as a result, may lead to the cat forgetting where the litter box is located or, more severely, how to use the litter box.
3. Why is my elderly cat peeing in the house?
As cats get older, just like humans, their immune system is prone to attack from infections; this is worsened by the fact that the systems weaken with age. Your elderly cat peeing around the house is brought about by several conditions such as cognitive impairment, arthritis, and sporadic incidences of bullying by other cats that may be present in the place. Other factors that may contribute to this is a dirty litter box or the wrong type of litter.
4. How to keep my senior cat healthy?
Unlike kittens, senior cats need even more care as they get older. Theses cats experience a lot of difficulties executing day to day activities. They are prone to attack from infections that their systems could not handle. There are several ways to keep your senior cat healthy they may include;
– Daily brushing
The daily brushing of your cat’s fur is essential in its health care. Brushing its hair ensures that loose fur is removed from the cat’s body, which prevents furballs from forming or even that cat from swallowing it own far. The cat swallowing its fur can lead to even more diseases and even cause a problem in its digestive tracks. The brushing of hair also ensures the cat’s skin is free from infections and is healthy.
– Daily tooth brushing
Dental hygiene is very crucial for senior cats. It reduces the risk of exposing them to tooth and gum infections. Brushing the cat’s teeth is essential in even preventing loss of teeth to the cat, leading to a decrease in appetite due to difficulty in chewing food. Brushing teeth also helps prevent gum diseases, which can cause a lot of pain while drinking water or even eating food, which can easily cause the cat to be malnourished.
– Proper nutrition
Due to its age, senior cats aren’t just fed random food items. At their age, nutrition is vital for these cats as it helps to prolong their lifespan further. It is crucial to seek assist and a professional’s view on how to feed the cats. Find out what kind of foods benefit cat health. Provide the cat with various options, all of which should be healthy, then find out which one is it’s favorite and feed it to the cat as often as possible.
– Reducing stress
Senior cats need high levels of care as they age gracefully. It is essential to ensure that they are taken care of in a cat-friendly environment full of love. Cats should always be comfortable and treated well. Their age renders them fragile and weak most of the time. This makes them need more assistance in executing even the most manageable tasks, such as using the litter box. By taking care of the senior cat, you create a stress-free environment for the old cat.
Senior cats are a rare breed of species. It is challenging for a cat to live past 11years. It is important to note that cat years are not the same as human years. By owning one of these rare cats, it is crucial to care for the animal properly. It is usual for the cat to become more feeble with time. Therefore, it is necessary to frequently visit veterinary clinics to ensure it is not suffering from any illness. Senior cats should be loved and cared for all the time.