Cats are fastidious animals, but their litter can get messy. Stuck to the bottoms of tiny paws, those little pebbles find their way across your floors and into the oddest places. Bits of litter can cling to kitties after they leave the box. And energetic business sessions can produce a veritable Niagara of litter pebbles over the wall.
Clean floors and cats just don't seem to go together. But maybe they could.
How can you stop your cat from flinging litter everywhere? What really keeps floors clean when you have a kitty?
As the experts in all things kitty business, we know a thing or two about how to stop litter tracking around your home. Read on for our best tips for how to stop cat litter tracking that will help you keep your home looking fresh, and your cat feeling loved and wanted.
Why is it important to stop litter tracking?
Litter tracking — when litter clings to your cat's paws and fur — is a common problem for many cat owners. Not only does it create a visual nuisance, but it can also cause health problems, as the litter can attract bugs to the box or even stick to your bare feet. But fear not, there are solutions to prevent cat litter from tracking around your home!
How do you stop cat litter from tracking everywhere?
Let's look at five tools you can use to stop litter tracking.
1. The box.
A clean litter box is the star of your litter management lineup. The litter box should be the right length, width, and height for your cat.
Length Conventional wisdom says a box should be as long as a cat from nose nub to tail tip.
Width The width needs to equal the cat's length minus the extended tail.
Height The best choice depends on your cat's habits rather than his size. Sprayers, high pee-ers, and litter flingers need at least 8-12 inches of height. Kittens and older cats may need a shorter box due to their limited mobility.
A hooded box such as the Modkat or the Modkat XL litter box can help stop your cat from flinging litter over the walls during an enthusiastic scratching session. If you have a high-jumping or large cat, consider using a litter tray with high walls to contain the litter.
2. The mat.
Cat litter box mats remove pebbles from the bottoms of little paws, which is why they are crucial to litter scattering.
As your cat probably doesn't stop to wipe her feet on your welcome mat, litter mats can assist in catching pebbles before they track them across your bare floor. Choose a mat with ridges or a honeycomb design to catch more litter.
Cats love comfortable litter mats. They're easy to clean, skid-resistant, and — most importantly — they're great for removing litter from their paws. Besides being the right size for your litter box, your mat should also look good in your home.
Modkat offers two mats made from comfortable, phthalate-free PVC, the same material as sneakers' soles. Katch mats are smaller and come in two sizes, whereas regular mats come in two sizes.
3. The liner.
Liners make the litter box easier to change. You just lift the liner out, dump the litter, clean the liner, and put it back in. These accessories also help keep litter where it belongs — in the box, off the cat, and away from your floors.
But you have to use the right kind of liner to get these benefits. Thin, plastic, disposable liners such as trash bags can make things worse because cats poke holes in them and scratch through them.
When that happens, cat urine gets trapped between the liner and the litter box floor. Pebbles can fly everywhere during a scratching episode. And the box may get scratched badly.
Our Modkat Reusable Liners are built to last. Some customers tell us they've used their liners for more than a year. We don't like to exaggerate, so we tell folks they last for three months on average.
4. The litter.
Consider your litter. Most cat owners buy clumping clay litter because it's cheap, easy to find, and does its job. The trouble is that clay litters do major environmental damage. Companies strip mine the clay out of the northwestern states, a process that uproots animal habitats, dislodges topsoil, and leaves long scars across the landscape.
Clay litter also tracks more easily than other kinds. Why not try an option that's good for your floors and for the biosphere?
Paper pellets might be a good choice. These generally stay put. Corn, wheat, and walnut shell litters also get a thumbs up in the tracking department. You may have to experiment with different litter options to find out what you, your cat, and your home prefer.
5. The schedule.
Make sure to have a plan for cleaning your cat's box and your home on a regular basis. Even with the best litter strategy, you're going to find the occasional stray pebble here and there. The cat box should be scooped at least once a day. You may even use the vacuum a couple of times a week to clean the area around the box.
Cat litter scatter can be irritating, but it is not inevitable. A well-designed, hooded litter box with a mat of the right size can help protect your house from litter and keep your cat healthy.
Best litter box placements to stop litter tracking
Now that you have the right tools to prevent litter tracking let's talk about the best location to place the litter box. Litter box placement is key to making sure your cat regularly uses the right spot.
Choose a quiet area. Cats prefer to do their business in peace and quiet. Placing the litter box in a noisy or high-traffic area may cause your kitty stress and anxiety, which could lead to litter box avoidance.
Avoid high-moisture areas. Placing the litter box in a bathroom or near a shower or humidifier can cause the litter to clump, stick to your cat's paws, and track around your home.
Place the box on a level surface. Make sure the litter box is placed on a flat and stable surface. If the box is wobbly or unstable, your cat may be less likely to use it, or it could spill over, causing more litter tracking.
Keep your cat's litter box away from food and water. Cats don't like to do their business near their food and water sources. If you keep the litter box near their food bowls, your kitty may not use it, or it could lead to a mess that's hard to clean up.
Place the box in a discrete area. Lastly, choose a discrete location that is easy to access but out of the way. Avoid placing it in an area that guests frequent or that is visible from the living room or kitchen.
Once you've chosen the right location for your litter box, it's important to clean it regularly to prevent any unpleasant smells and to keep your kitty happy. A dirty litter box is the major cause of inappropriate elimination.
To clean the box, use a scooper to remove any solid waste daily and change the litter once a week. Be sure you don't flush litter down the toilet — marine life will appreciate it — and don't put it in your compost pile. A litter keeper is a great place to keep your bags of clumpy litter until it's time to take out the garbage again.
If you follow these tips, you'll have a happy and clean kitty, and you won't have to worry about litter tracking anymore.