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Toilet training not an option for most cats

Tuesday, 30th October 2012

The endless collection of animal videos online have certainly opened our eyes to what our furry friends are capable of – but would you teach your cat to use your toilet?

In his latest Q and A column vet Pete Wedderburn addresses just this issue, as one reader explains they're fed up with changing the litter tray every day.

Mr Wedderburn confirms that toilet training your feline is possible, with commercial kits now available to determined owners. However, he swiftly points out that "if it was easy to train cats to do this, everyone would be doing it".

"The truth is that the natural, normal elimination patterns of cats involves digging in a loose, sandy substrate to prepare a shallow hole. The human lavatory doesn’t provide the opportunity to perform this normal pattern," he wrote.

"They may manage to learn to use the lavatory, but with the slightest disturbance (e.g. urinary tract infection, slippery loo seat et cetera), they’ll move on to somewhere else (e.g. bath mat, carpet, owner’s bed)."

Ultimately, most owners will want to ensure they have a ready supply of good cat litter that meets their pet's needs.