A vital part of grooming a cat is its potty training. Yes, being on the watch for the number of times your cat poops during the day is not your dream job. However, it’s important if you want to maintain your home’s hygiene but also ensures that your kitty is healthy and safe.
Did you know that your cat’s poop has a lot to say about the condition of the little pet? Whether your cat is suddenly constipated or poops too much and too moist, it could be an indicator of a health problem.
So, how often should a cat? Let’s take a deep look at further factors and find out.
The Importance of Monitoring the Litter Box
You can’t always look at what the cat’s doing, especially if you’re a person with a job and a busy schedule overall. Therefore, the only alternative left is monitoring the litter box of your four-legged friend and analyze the poop – a wonderful activity, right? By regularly checking the box, you can easily see if the cat has used it during the day at all. On the other hand, you can notice if the box was used more than usual.
This change in behavior could indicate if there’s something wrong with your pet and encourage you to take the right course of action. So, here are some conditions your cat might be facing, and the symptoms that signal them:
Is your cat spending more time inside the litter box than playing and sleeping? If that’s the case, it might be a huge sign that your kitty is dealing with diarrhea. It can be proven once you scoop and analyze the structure of the poop. If it’s creamy or watery, then you have a problem and need to take your cat to the vet.
When your cat goes from a proper schedule to barely touching the litter box, it could be a sign that your cat is constipated. It is a serious matter and you should take the cat to a vet as soon as you can, especially if the lack of pooping is accompanied by other symptoms like bleeding or lack of appetite.
Why Is My Cat Not Pooping?
If your cat’s poop production has stopped, there could be several reasons for it.
An older cat, for instance, may be in pain due to potential arthritis, which leads to the pet holding the stool inside for an extended time. As a result, constipation occurs, so you won’t see your cat visiting the litter box too often.
Also, it’s important to note that obesity is not only detrimental to the cat’s movement, but also to its pooping schedule. That being said, if your kitty is a little too much on the overweight side, it might be what causes constipation.
Moreover, there is a disease that cats are at risk of developing. Called megacolon, this affection prevents the cat from pooping normally. This might lead to constipation, but it may also go to the next level and cause obstipation – which is a complete lack of pooping due to a blockage of the intestine with stool. This is why veterinarian visits should become a regular habit.
Let’s not forget hydration either. If you don’t provide your cat with the right amount of water, constipation will occur sooner or later. Basically, water is a vital part of a cat’s diet, so if it doesn’t have enough of it, the litter box will remain empty.
What Are the Factors that Influence Poop Frequency?
Several aspects have a say when it comes to the number of times your cat goes to the litter box. Depending on each one of these factors, the pooping frequency may increase or decrease. Some of these aspects are:
Is your cat taking any medications for certain health issues? If you notice changes in the potty behavior of your cat as soon as the treatment begins, maybe it’s the medicine that’s causing the problem. In any case, it’s better to ask your veterinarian about any potential changes in bowel movements as a side effect of the supplements, so you know what to expect.
Does your cat like exercising, or is laziness taking over most of the time? Activity is one of the factors that contribute to the bowel movement, so the more they exercise, the healthier they’re going to be in this regard. It’s not much different from the importance of exercise in humans. That being said, make sure your cat is active, so constipation won’t occur.
As mentioned earlier, it’s important to give your kitty the right amount of water to support healthy bowel movements. If you feed it dry food, yet fail to offer proper hydration, don’t be surprised if the litter box will serve no purpose anymore.
In addition, if you start feeding your pet huge amounts of low-quality dry food, you should know that it’s not only unhealthy, but it will also lead to larger bowel movements. This could also lead to diarrhea.
Age has a huge influence on whether your cat needs to go potty more frequently or less frequently.
If you have a kitten that is still far from reaching adulthood, it should be expected that pooping will be a frequent occurrence. This is because of their underdeveloped digestive system, which is unable to hold a lot of poop as much as an adult cat is able to do. Once your kitty starts pooping more than 6 times per day, this might be a signal of diarrhea.
On the other side, adult cats should poop one time per day. Unless other factors affect their bowel movements, they won’t have to defecate more than once.
- Environmental Factors
Cats appreciate hygiene just as much as we do, so it should go without saying that a kitty’s litter box should be clean. If you barely maintain the hygiene, expect the furball to have a change in potty behavior, and influence the pooping frequency and habits.
Furthermore, if a cat is stressed, litter box visits might not occur so often anymore. Even more, you may notice that your cat has defecated in a different place because the litter box was not clean or because of the stress it’s going through.
How Long Can Cats Hold Their Poop?
The amount of time a cat can go without defecating depends on many factors. Unless there’s a medical problem that causes your cat not to poop, then your cat should be able to hold the poop for some hours.
If you happen to travel somewhere and worry about the cat eliminating in the car or in public, that may not even happen. In general, cats are very stressed about traveling. They’re on a constant move, and since they don’t have a spot where they can feel safe, they feel uncomfortable pooping. Therefore, your cat might hold it more than you expect, at least until you get to a place where your kitty can feel good about eliminating the feces.
However, keep in mind that if they hold it inside for too long, they might either be too stressed or have a medical problem, depending on the situation.
How Often Should a Cat Poop?
How often a cat should poop depends a lot on your feline’s age. There’s a big difference between kitties and adult cats and this should not be overlooked.
On average, baby cats need to poop more frequently compared to older ones. As you already know, kitties are underdeveloped, which means that their organs are still growing, thus they are not functioning the same way as adult organs.
On average, kittens will poop about 6 times daily. Besides their not yet developed organs, they are also very small, and food will circulate quickly, being eliminated after a while. However, if your little pet exceeds this number, then it may indicate a health problem, such as diarrhea, and you need to bring it to the vet.
Adult cats, on the other hand, should poop one time per day. It all comes down to the diet that your four-legged friend has, but one time should be a general routine. If your cat doesn’t go to the litter box or, quite the opposite, visits it too often, a health problem might cause the issue.
When Should I Worry?
You love your cat, and that’s why you want to ensure it’s not only happy at all times but also healthy and out of any danger. Pooping patterns may change, and you shouldn’t take it for granted. Depending on the symptoms, they may signal a more serious health issue that should be taken care of as soon as possible.
So, if your cat is showing one of the following symptoms, you should act as soon as possible:
- Your cat’s feces have blood in them
- The cat’s poop is either watery/creamy, off-color and smells more than usual
- There’s a change in the pooping pattern, such as not pooping for two days in a row or pooping too frequently
- There’s undue straining in the tray
How to Make My Cat Poop Regularly?
A healthy cat automatically has a regular pooping schedule. That being said, it should go to the litter box on a daily basis, no more than one time if it’s an adult cat.
As the kitty’s caretaker, you’re the one who needs to make sure its bowel movements are functioning normally, and there’s nothing that makes your cat feel unhappy or sick.
Having said that, here is what you need to do to make your cat poop regularly:
- Be Careful with the Food
Alimentation has a big influence on the amount of poop a kitty produces. So, if you purchase low-quality dry food from the shop, your cat’s bowel movements will increase. As a result, bigger quantities of poop must be eliminated, and your cat may need to use the litter box more often.
However, you need to look for high-quality food that doesn’t affect your cat’s metabolsim in a negative way, so make sure you take this aspect into consideration.
- Don’t Forget about Hydration
Water is essential for us, so it only makes sense that your kitty will want to have some fresh water once it’s done devouring the food in its bowl. Especially if you gave your cat dry food, water shouldn’t be missing next to the food bowl.
Basically, hydration is an important part of the alimentation, because it helps with food digestion. Without water, your cat may become constipated – thus, it will have difficulty in defecating and will not use the litter box on a daily basis.
So, make sure there’s always a water dish near the food bowl, as well as near the kitty’s favorite sleeping places. A drinking fountain might also be great in encouraging the cat to drink.
An important thing to remember, though, is to never leave water-soaked kibble inside the bowl for more than half an hour. Basically, kibbles may be contaminated with bacteria, and leaving them there will only pose a danger for the pet.
- Maintain a Happy Environment
A stressed cat might experience a change in pooping patterns, and it will not use the litter box regularly. So, it’s very important to ensure that your house is an area where your pet can feel as safe as possible. As a result, a worry-free environment will encourage your cat to have a healthy pooping schedule.
Pooping behavior can’t be overlooked if you care about your cat’s well-being. Thus, it’s very important to look for anything that’s out of the ordinary. Knowing the signs of a health problem can help you prevent its development and treat it properly.
All in all, you should always remember to provide your cat with high-quality alimentation, composed of healthy food, and the right amount of water. Moreover, an environment that is safe and stress-free is a key factor in ensuring that your cat goes to the litter box regularly.