Litter Box Tips For Cerebellar Hypoplasia Cats
Since CH kitties come in all sizes and severities, it’s important to find the right litter box match for your cat’s needs and abilities.
Some cats with mild CH may be able to use a regular litter pan without a problem. However, if your cat has considerable mobility issues, you may need to consider other types of litter boxes – if your cat can use the litter box at all.
Fortunately, there are dozens of options out there.
You may need to try out a few litter boxes, learn to be patient while you live through a time of trial and error, and sometimes you’ll need to get creative. However, once you find the perfect litter box for your cat, you’ll both feel more confident.
To find the best litter pan for your CH kitty, first determine her abilities and limitations. For example, some CH cats may need a low entrance into the litter box. Others may need high sides if they tend to lean while going. If your cat has severe CH and doesn’t walk, a litter box may not even be an option. (But don’t worry!)
It’s also important to keep in mind that some CH kitties become more capable as they age. You may find that a litter box that worked when your cat was 8-weeks-old may no longer be the best option by the time she’s reached 8 months.
Here’s a look at some of your options:
Kitten Or Cat With Mild CH
If your cat or kitten has mild CH, a regular litter box may be an option.
Also consider purchasing a litter box hood, which can help keep a good deal of litter (and any mess) in the pan. If you have an adult cat with CH, a hood may help ensure that she does her business in the pan, as opposed to it going over the side.
Depending on how small your kitten is, you may need to consider a low-entry pan (see below), or some sort of ramp or step to make it easier for her to get into the litter box. You can create a step by piling large coffee-table books in front of the pan. Try covering them with a towel so your kitty can easily grip onto the “step” for stability. Another option would be to make a ramp for your kitty.
If your kitten is only a few weeks old, try using a kitten-sized litter box, or a disposable aluminum baking pan.
Once she’s older and taller, she may be able to graduate to an actual litter box.
Kitten Or Cat With Moderate CH
If your cat can get to and use the litter box relatively well, a low-entry pan may work best. These can be a bit more difficult to find, but if worst comes to worst, you can even make your own.
Keep in mind that most kitties with moderate to severe CH will probably do their business while laying on their side. You’ll want to check on your kitty a few times to find out how your kitty does her business. While most can go without a problem, sometimes they can come out of the pan a bit messy. Keep this in mind especially if your kitty has loose stools or if you haven’t been able to clean out the box in a day. You can find more tips here.
Another option would be to make your own litter box, by cutting an entry into a large plastic container.
Kitten or Cat with Severe CH
If your kitten isn’t able to walk, it’s especially important to become in tune with her litter box needs. Watch carefully to see if she has a routine (usually kittens go 15-30 minutes after eating), and if she makes noises or sends signals when she’s ready to go.
Here you have several options. Depending on your comfort level, you may want to put your kitty in her box when she needs to use it, and hold her while she does her business. If you can’t always be around when she may need to use the pan, look into puppy training pads. It may result in a bit of a mess, but at least it’ll be somewhat contained and easier to clean up.
Another option would be to consider diapering your pet.