Maine coon refuses to use litter box

  • Twin part Maine coon one refuses to use litter box. Have 4 cats, several litter boxes through my home

  • Hey Laura and thanks for your question. I'm sorry to hear about this, it is such a frustrating issue to be dealing with,

    Certainly, this is something we see more in multi-cat households.

    You do not mention if it is an issue with stool or urine, so perhaps both?

    If a new issue, we'd wonder what has changed. Is there a new cat or has there been a falling out? Has the home or the cat's routine changed? Or has he developed signs such as frequent urination or loose poo, which could be indicative of a medical issue?


    Oftentimes inappropriate use of the tray or not using the tray is linked to anxiety or boredom, as well as 'worry' about other cats having claimed it as their own.

    The rule of thumb is that there should be one tray per cat and one extra. So with 4 cats, this means 6 trays.

    Trays need to be in areas of the home with low foot traffic, where he has privacy. They must not be near a food or water source.

    Cats are often incredibly fussy and won't use a tray because it is dirty. so keeping the trays as clean as possible will help.

    If you cannot do this due to e.g. work commitments or because she is always soiling at night, I'd invest in a self cleaning tray.


    Some cats have a tray or litter preference, so the answer can be as simple as changing the type of litter you use or the type of litter tray. Some like using ones with a roof.


    I'd consider the use of a Feliway Friends to increase harmony amongst the cats. If your Maine Coon does seem anxious, I might also consider starting him on some daily calming supplements.


    Make sure each kitty has all of their own resources (food bowl, scratch post, cat tree etc.) and do not have to share anything, as this can cause a lot of worry.

    We also want to know they're getting plenty of mental and physical stimulation.


    All 'accidents' should be promptly cleaned with an enzymatic cleaner, to eliminate the odour and prevent re-soiling.

    We should never tell him off for accidents, as this increases anxiety and makes things worse.


    A final note; as mentioned above, for some cats the issue is medical.

    They may have a grumbling cystitis, low level urinary infection, inflamed bowel or urinary stones.

    So if we are not seeing improvement, a vet check is sensible, which may include a urine analysis, stool analysis and bladder scan.

    In some cases, a urinary diet and bladder supplements will be the key, or perhaps a wormer and course of probiotics.

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