Can cats share a litter box

Can Cats Share A Litter Box? Facts You Need To Know Leave a comment

Table of Contents

  1. Can Sibling Cats Share A Litter Box?
  2. Can Male And Female Cats Share A Litter Box?
  3. What Are The Problems With Using One Litter Box For Two Cats?
  4. Do Outdoor Cats Need Litter Boxes?
  5. Can Cats Share Water Bowls?
  6. Conclusion

Cats are lovable and cute creatures. Every cat owner wishes to see his/her cat enjoying good health and staying happy. Can cats share a litter box? Every cat owner shows curiosity to know about this question. All along with this, there are a few other relevant questions that are usually asked by cat owners, for instance 

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In this article, we will discuss “can cats share a litter box? And other related things under the light of scientific literature and general field experience.

*Discloser: This post may contain affiliate links, meaning, I get a commission if you decide to make a purchase through one of my links, at no cost to you.

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Can Sibling Cats Share A Litter Box?

Generally, cats are considered good animals at sharing their things. Some cats even mind sharing litter boxes even if they are from the same litter (Siblings). But there are a few exceptions, some cats create a good bond with their siblings and enjoy sharing a litter box. 

As a thumb rule, there must 3 litter boxes for two cats to prevent any kind of inconvenience and stressful conditions in cats. However, if two cats share a single litter box, this thing saves the cleaning time of the owner. But, letting two cats share a litter box is not a sweet deal, it can lead to anxiety and stress in your beloved feline friend.

Note: There is no role of gender in this at all. Usually, this has been seen that two female or cats of opposite sex enjoy sharing a single litter box. But two males can’t share at all because of their fighting tendency. Overall, cats love privacy and won’t prefer sharing a litter box even with siblings.

Note: Cats love privacy particularly while relieving. All along with that, they like clean places. In the case of sharing a litter box with siblings, the siblings can make the litter box tidy pretty quickly that can trigger stress in your cat. Over and above, cats are territorial and consider litter box their territory. So, they don’t prefer letting others attack their private place.

Can Male And Female Cats Share A Litter Box?

This is a general experience that two cats of the opposite sex can happily share a litter box. But this behavior may vary from cat to cat. Some cats of the opposite sex don’t even prefer staying with each other. Remember, you should keep eye on your cat whether she is feeling relaxed or stressed. Always take suggestions from an expert feline practitioner in this regard.

What Are The Problems With Using One Litter Box For Two Cats?

As discussed earlier, cats don’t prefer sharing litter boxes. Cats love the privacy and sharing a litter box with others can cause anxiety and depression in them. There are several problems that can arise on using a litter box for two cats. 

For instance, using a litter box for two cats will make it dirty and can lead to serious health-related conditions. Obviously, you won’t like to compromise the health of your beloved feline friends.  

Secondly as discussed in the previous paragraph that cats are territorial animals and need privacy. To them, the most important thing is defecation and urination. So, keeping two cats together in a litter box is not a safe and appropriate idea.

Tip: Cat behaviorists suggest that there must be 1.5 litter boxes available for a single cat to keep her relaxed and stress-free. For example, if you have two cats, then you must arrange three litter boxes for them. This is a thumb rule to keep cats happy and healthy.

Do Outdoor Cats Need Litter Boxes?

Not at all. The outdoor cats don’t need litter boxes to defecate or urinate. Outdoor cats like to do their business in an open area where they have loose dirt to bury everything. Additionally, they also mark their personal area (territory). When outdoors cats observe other animals coming to their personal spot, they mark it with urination or defecation.

There are several risks associated with outdoor cats. Their excreta can cause problems for plants. Their digging and burying instinct can uproot the plants and create problems for you. So, if you want to litter train your outdoor cat, talk to a cat behaviorist and take suggestions regarding the litter training of outdoor cats.

Can Cats Share Water Bowls?

Yes, this is pretty fine for cats. Generally, cats don’t mind sharing water bowls. But remember, there are always exceptions. Some cats hate this arrangement, so, the owner should check out the behavior of the cat and take action accordingly.

Logic: This is present in the DNA of cats that they are possessive about their resources and usually don’t like sharing things with others even littermates. This is why; you should keep this thing in your mind. Last but not least, the choice is yours. You can adjust the arrangement according to the convenience and nature of your cat.

Tip: Sharing water bowls with others may trigger behavioral issues in cats and can become challenging for them. All along with that, this thing can lead to water competition that may result in dehydration in your cat. Keep in mind; it is very important to keep the cats hydrated for their overall wellbeing and brilliant performance.

Being a responsible owner, you should get separate bowls for each cat (if you have multiple cats at home). Try to keep the bowl of each cat at a separate place to prevent any kind of confusion and fighting behavior among the cats. 

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Conclusion

Cats are territorial animals. They don’t like sharing their personal/private things with each other. If you have multiple cats, arrange separate litter boxes (As per the given rule) and water bowls for them.

Sharing litter boxes and water bowls may lead to behavioral problems in your cat which in return can cause serious health issues. This always recommended keeping an eye on the behavior of a cat and contacting the vet, if anything wrong is suspected.

Is Cat Privacy Conscious?

Yes, cats are considered territorial animals by natural default. This is why, they like privacy particularly with respect to urination, defection, and feed.

Can Sharing Litter Box With Others Make My Cat Anxious?

Yes, this thing can lead to severe anxiety and stress in your cat. The anxiety and stress can affect the overall well-being of your cat and make her ill.

Can Sharing A Water Bowl Can Make My Cat ill?

This is clear that cats need a healthy amount of water to stay well. When a cat shares a water bowl with others, this thing may lead to the availability of less amount of water to your cat. She may become dehydrated and ill.

Can I Continue Using A Litter Box For Two Cats, If Both Cats Are Comfortable?

Yes, this is up to you. If your cats are comfortable and feel safe with each other then you can use a single litter box. However, this is not recommended due to many reasons. It may harbor various pathogenic bacteria that can make your cat ill. If you have space and budget, arrange separate litter boxes for each cat.

References

Horwitz, D.F., 2019. Common feline problem behaviors: Urine spraying. Journal of feline medicine and surgery21(3), pp.209-219.

Ellis, J.J., McGowan, R.T.S. and Martin, F., 2017. Does previous use affect litter box appeal in multi-cat households?. Behavioral processes141, pp.284-290.

Grigg, E.K., Pick, L. and Nibblett, B., 2013. Litter box preference in domestic cats: covered versus uncovered. Journal of feline medicine and surgery15(4), pp.280-284.

Robbins, M.T., Cline, M.G., Bartges, J.W., Felty, E., Saker, K.E., Bastian, R. and Witzel, A.L., 2019. Quantified water intake in laboratory cats from still, free-falling, and circulating water bowls, and its effects on selected urinary parameters. Journal of feline medicine and surgery21(8), pp.682-690.

Dantas, L.M., Delgado, M.M., Johnson, I. and Buffington, C.T., 2016. Food puzzles for cats: feeding for physical and emotional wellbeing. Journal of feline medicine and surgery18(9), pp.723-732.

Jongman, E.C., 2007. Adaptation of domestic cats to confinement. Journal of Veterinary Behavior2(6), pp.193-196.

Pryor, P.A., Hart, B.L., Bain, M.J. and Cliff, K.D., 2001. Causes of urine marking in cats and effects of environmental management on frequency of marking. Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association219(12), pp.1709-1713.

Martens, P., Enders-Slegers, M.J. and Walker, J.K., 2016. The emotional lives of companion animals: Attachment and subjective claims by owners of cats and dogs. Anthrozoös29(1), pp.73-88.

Arahori, M., Kuroshima, H., Hori, Y., Takagi, S., Chijiiwa, H. and Fujita, K., 2017. Owners’ view of their pets’ emotions, intellect, and mutual relationship: cats and dogs compared. Behavioral processes141, pp.316-321.

Spiri, A.M., Meli, M.L., Riond, B., Herbert, I., Hosie, M.J. and Hofmann-Lehmann, R., 2019. Environmental contamination and hygienic measures after feline calicivirus field strain infections of cats in a research facility. Viruses11(10), p.958.

R. Dulaney, D., Hopfensperger, M., Malinowski, R., Hauptman, J. and Kruger, J.M., 2017. Quantification of urine elimination behaviors in cats with a video recording system. Journal of veterinary internal medicine31(2), pp.486-491.

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