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Stress Can Cause Litter Box Avoidance

Discovering that your cat has suddenly decided to use the rug or couch for his or her litter box is disconcerting, to say the least. Urine and feces not only smell bad, but they can stain fabrics. However, finding out what is causing this sudden change in your otherwise perfect pet is much more important than punishment, and can help you get the situation back to normal quickly.

Stress May Be the Problem

Stress is the body's reaction to an unpleasant or dangerous situation. A little stress may be good because it helps your cat to avoid trouble. Normally, once the immediate problem is gone, stress levels drop off.

However, when the trigger for the stress remains, it can easily manifest itself in your cat finding the wrong spot to urinate, or even defecate. Stepping back and analyzing why your cat may be stressed is the best way to not only solve the litter box problem, but also to make your cat (and you) much happier. Always remember that cats are not only very intelligent, they are also very sensitive. Any disruption in household routine can cause problems.

Helping Your Cat Adjust

The best way to help your cat return to regular use of the litter box is to reduce stress as much as possible. There are pheromone products that will help to calm your cat, but you can also help by providing plenty of attention. Use some positive reinforcement, in the form of treats and praise, when your cat does use the litter box.

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