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Question DetailsAsked on 6/20/2011

Anyone used the City Kitty method to potty train their cat?

I am toilet training my 20 lbs. orange tom cat, Erik. We are using the City Kitty method (combined in part with the Mingus method). I can tell you ONE thing... cats are pretty possessive about their litter tray, and if your cat is indoor/outdoor like Erik, this does complicate things a bit. He's been holding it since we moved his catbox next to the toilet, the little stinker.

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32 Answers

Voted Best Answer
3
Votes

Sorry for the delay in updates. We had a HUGE major setback and kitty trauma. Apparently, phone books are NOT optimal for raising up your cat's litterbox if said cat is enormous. All the websites and literature recommend that you raise up the litterbox to the height of the toilet, and the preferred material is phonebooks. Not for a nearly 20 lbs cat. Erik hopped in his newly jacked up litter box to do his duty and it promptly shot off the phone books causing mass hysteria and trauma. TERROR!! HORROR!! Meowing in the streets!!

It took a whole week for him to finally being using the litter box AT ALL. He's been holding it and refusing to go until he heads outside. We had to take the litter box back down to the ground and start "over" but, he seems to be finally okay with the litter box. My husband has built a more stable riser for the box to go on that I think we may install this weekend. I'm going to start setting Erik on the actually toilet trainer starting tonight, and then give him treats, to see if he starts to get the idea. So, what I have learned: Indoor/outdoor cats are more difficult to toilet train, big fat giant kitties are too much for phone books alone.

Unfortunately for Erik, he also just got all of his annual shots and a nice checkup from the vet, which involved far more poking in his hind-end than he's comfortable with. Good news, though! He's down to 17 lbs. from 25 lbs. Not that he's happy about it. All that, and the rump-poking seems to have given the litter box trauma a run for it's money. He's momentarily forgotten that the litter box is fickle and not to be trusted. I guess the answer is that whenever he gets toilet trauma to haul him to the vet for an exam.

So, we continue on in our struggle for a toilet trained cat, but I think this adventure will take much longer than previously thought. I think that snow on the ground will much improve our chances of success, since he'll be less likely to "hold it" If I can just get him up on the seat, I think it will be relatively smooth sailing, but I think that the transition from litter will be a doozy, too!!

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

0
Votes

I haven't actually tried this, but if my two get any bigger, I'm going to have to check it out.

Keep me posted.

"Don't give up. Don't ever give up." - Jimmy V

Answered 6 years ago by fuzzybunnies

0
Votes

Well, we are taking it VERRRRY slowly. Moving his litterbox next to the toilet was far more traumatic than we expected. We were going to skip the "raising the litterbox up to the height of the toilet" step, but I don't think that would go over well. I'm sure we will be successful, but I think it will take much longer than anticipated... In part because he is indoor/outdoor. I'll keep posting progress updates here.

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

0
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I look forward to hearing how things progress -- I'm confident that it'll work, but I'm curious about how long it will take. Of course, various factors come into play here (age, indoor/outdoor, general demeanor, etc.)... One of these days, I'll have a cat again, and would probably look into this.

Of course, if someone perfects this system for dogs... then that'll be a glorious day. [:D]

Answered 6 years ago by TheDecider

2
Votes

Well, we've moved to the next stage. Erik (that's the cat) has finally acclimated to having his litterbox moved. I was amazed at how much that ticked him off (see how I nicely avoided a pun there?). Normally, each "stage" takes about 3-7 days, but it took nearly two weeks for him to get over it.

We now have the box "up on blocks" as it were, so the litterbox is now about half the height of the toilet. He didn't really even seem to notice, which is miraculous considering the fit he had about the "big move" This weekend, the box goes to toilet height. If that goes well, the following weekend, the litter box goes AWAY!

I think Erik's transition to the toilet and complete litter freedom will take longer than usual since he is indoor/outdoor. Hopefully winter and snow on the ground will speed things up a smidgin. (He hates the snow and tends to stay in more).

Unfortunately, I don't think dogs are nimble enough to do the toilet thing. I can only imagine a clatter of nails, some whining, and then a loud splash...

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

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CONGRATULATIONS !

I really don't think there is hope for the dog version.

I have a 120+ pound Shepard and I guarantee he would have nothing to do with the idea. In fact, the clatter of nails, whining and splash would be the humanoid trying to get him up there.[;)]

Answered 6 years ago by Old Grouch

0
Votes

Well, we are now at the next step. We've raised the litterbox a bit higher than last time. He didn't seem to care at all last time, but he has once again resorted to "holding it" until he goes out. I'm sure he'll get over it in a day or two... He may be a bit put off by the new flushable litter. Maybe I should have only changed one thing at a time. The height and the litter may have just been too much. He hasn't thrown a fit, but he's not exactly cooperating either. I hope he gets over his aversion soon! I think Erik will take a couple of months to train instead of the 4 weeks they claim at City Kitty! Let's hope that a whole day indoors today brings results that aren't on my carpet.

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

0
Votes

October 10th, 20th, 24th and 30th. Looks like you are averaging an update on almost a weekly basis.

I can't imagine how frustrating it might be for you (OK, for Erik too) some days.

If you are able to report small successes nearly each week then it has got to be good!

Congrats to both of you!


Answered 6 years ago by Old Grouch

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I have owned many varieties (Genus-Species) of fish, fowl and mammalia and the only time I ponder the raison d'etre of my choices is when I consider Felis Domestica.

Why? Why? Why!!!!!!!!! Am I a masochist? Do I need to punish myself for some transgression I got away with? I once shared my house with 8 cats but now only 2. The only cat I ever paid money for was a rare Siamese breed that my consort whined for. Otherwise they were rescued from the pound or taken in from the streets. So, if a Bozo like Bush can garner votes in a blue state I guess a pschologically savvy person can be seduced by a cowardly and viscious predator who will occasionaly give us a rub (to claim us) and allow us to stroke its fur that it coats with allergens.

My neighborhood has lost the benefit of a variety of beautiful songbirds thanks to pampered cats that kill for reasons other than sustenance. It's time we rethink our inner needs and motivations for sustaining bird killers who are too cowardly to attack even small rats. When's the last time your kitty laid a rat at your feet??

Answered 6 years ago by aceinspector

2
Votes

Oh, you couldn't be more wrong! But it sounds to me that you are a dog person trying to get along with kitties. Cats will never be dogs and vice versa. If you want a pack animal that will suck up to you for hours, then get a nice needy boxer or something.


Need your cat to kill things? If that cat was raised inside and coddled like a baby, probably not going to happen. It probably helps that my cat is very calorie motivated just due to sheer size. Erik is quite the wily hunter, and he has killed 9 rats (yes, RATS!), countless mice and shrews. He's not killed any songbirds, but almost exclusively grackles and starlings (which are interloping non-native blights on the bird community) He does keep the roost here quite vermin free, and more than "pays for his kibble" on a daily basis with affection and play. Erik comes to his name, sits on command, plays fetch, as well as a wide variety of other playtime activities. He also sits in my lap and lets me pet him, and keeps me and my hubby company. He values our company, and prefers to have both of us within paw's reach, or at least within view. He prefers to sit with one paw on each of us, actually.

I think cats, like any animal or child, are a product of time spent. Did you bother to learn anything about cat psychology or behavior? Cats, being solitary predators CHOOSE to be social, so you need to give them a reason for such. I also have had many varieties of mammal and fish, and cats are by far the top of the line. I enjoyed my ferrets very much, but nothing is as satisfying as a furry kitty that asks to sit in your lap and purr for a few hours.

On THAT note, the kitty toilet training has started back up! We really thought that it was important to wait until fuzzpants had chilled out before pushing the issue. He seems to be completely comfortable now with the new litter and the "open' position of the box, so tonight we are going to once again attempt to put the litter box up on blocks. This time with an improved, slip-proof base. Wish us luck! Hopefully I'll have good news to report tomorrow.

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

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Glad to see you are back to the training - - good luck to you and the critter!

Answered 6 years ago by Old Grouch

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Thanks! We'll have that cat using the toilet come hell or high water, I tell ya!!

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

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OMG - these posts are cracking me up!! Imagining the kitty horror at sliding OFF all those phonebooks was the best.... it should be a scene in a movie!

h……….

Answered 6 years ago by cassar11

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cassar11, I know! I felt bad, but it totally made me laugh. [;)] The betrayed look on his little face made me feel like a bad person, though.

So, last night, the litter box once again made it's journey upward. We now have the cat box on a very STABLE riser that my husband built out of plywood. It has wood stops all the way around to prevent a reoccurrence of the sliding "incident." I set Erik in the box to show him it was stable, and all the claws were out, the base of his tail puffed up HUGE in horror. I've been luring him back to the box with treats. This will probably take him a while to adjust to. Luckily, it's snowy outside, so he's spending quality time indoors. He did NOT use the box overnight last night, but he's inside all day. We'll see what happens!

It does make me feel fairly silly that I have to be so concerned about his toilet habits, but I suppose it's not as bad as potty training a toddler. [:D]

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

1
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I adopted a cat that had all the admirable qualities that most dogs are inately born with or learn. ( I am not an alpha male or need to be sucked up to, so I don't care why a dog needs to please, I am just pleased that it wants to please and be sociable to most critters - you won't see a sitcom where a cat alerts a human that TIMMY HAS FALLEN IN THE WELL ) If my wife and I believed in reincarntation then we would think that our "best" cat, e.g. Palang was a dog in a previous life. He had all the positive cat attributes, none of the negative cat attributes and the intelligence all day long companioship of a dog. If we called him he would come no matter where he was or what he was doing. Cats are clever, dogs are intelligent. Even when you factor in motivation or lack of it, cats make a poor showing. Feral cats wreak devastation on indigenous wildlife. They kill mosquito eating lizards in the tropics and are tied with Mongeese, pigs and goats for damaging Hawiian wildlife. I could go on but my kitty is bugging me to get its wet dinner. (Dry food is always available and they get wet at breakfast and dinner and bacon on Sunday)

Answered 6 years ago by aceinspector

0
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Kitties wreak ecological havoc in niches where humans have introduced them inappropriately. Dogs are not that much better. Feral dogs run in packs, threaten humans (never go camping without something to protect you from roving bands of abandoned dogs... it's a scary truth) and indigenous animal populations. They also decimate wildlife and overwhelm lower niche predator populations. You'll never hear about a pack of feral cats killing a toddler. That recently happened with a pack of abandoned dogs that had all been house pets. Ask people in Australia about indigenous feral dog populations, and I think you'll find some people who'd love to swap them for piles of free range kitties. You "friendship" with your dog is an illusion based on its perception that you are a superior predator. Get a dog that wants to test that dynamic and you have a problem on your hands, perhaps life threatening. Get a cat that wants to test that paradigm and you might need to get stitches at worst. Also, SOME dogs are intelligent. I have met my share of exceedingly DUMB dogs. Dont' get me wrong, I also love dogs. I love fuzzy animules of all kinds. One of my favorite creatures in the universe is a lovely little pit bull. She's sweet, but smart... not so much. Also, I don't feel like cats have negative attributes (kidding! But not much)

It sounds like Palang and Erik's behavior are very similar! [:D]

On the toilet training front, Erik is currently acting like his litterbox is filled with hot lava. He'll probably take a few days to get over it.

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

0
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Also, there are stories of cats risking their lives to save their owners from fire and such. Dogs don't corner that market. (sorry... forgot to address that above) In one instance, the cat alerted the family to a broken gas line by digging up the pipe until its little kitty paws bled. He yowled and yowled at his humans until they followed him to his "yard work" where they realized he was trying to save them.

Now, my cat usually only yowls like that when he wants me to dangle his string for him, but that's a whole nother story.

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

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[quote user="eliz1bef"]

Erik is currently acting like his litterbox is filled with hot lava. He'll probably take a few days to get over it.

[/quote]

Don't know if pictures would help Erik or not, but the story Here has at least one that might help motivate him. If nothing else, she tells a good story.

Answered 6 years ago by Old Grouch

0
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HA!!!!!! I wonder if pics would help... there is a whole website devoted to the subject called "Kitty Goes Potty" It's all pics of kitties on the toilet.

He's still ignoring his "jacked up" litterbox. He's a very sensitive kitty. Unfortunately I think I may need to start setting him in it several times a day and giving him treats. He stayed in today, so we'll see if this day brings any, um, "production"

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

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No luck. Nearly a week now and Erik is resolute in his decision to go outdoors. Maybe I SHOULD put up pics of other kitties on the loo.

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

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Oh my - I just realized it has been two weeks and we haven't heard about the latest with poor Erik.

If he hasn't started doing something, I can imagine a little kitty puffed-up like a bowling ball now who refuses to visit the end of the hall because the memory haunts so much.[*-)]


Answered 6 years ago by Old Grouch

0
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Well, it looks like we have successfully trained Erik to go potty outside. he absolutely refuses to use the litterbox. He barely will enter the bathroom. Ive started setting him up on the potty and giving him a treat thereafter, but I think that Erik has decided to use the great outdoors as his comode. He now meows to go out when he needs to potty.

Now, for those who don't know me, I'm relentless. I will beat a dead horse until it's pate, so I'm sure I will continue to horrify my poor cat by trying to stick with this, but I'm pretty sure that I may have lost the battle and the war. thank goodness I don't know when to quit!

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

0
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[quote user="eliz1bef"]

...he absolutely refuses to use the litterbox. ...

[/quote]

Key word is he .

He needs time to assert that scaring the poop out of him will not work and he will determine how things are to be. Male ego is not to be understood!

You may have to start at the begining again. Put the litter box where you first put it to train him and wait for the first big snow or major rain storm. When he decides you have suffered enough, he will march over to the box and make a regal showing of allowing you to have him do his thing indoors.

I'm not saying that cats and men have anything in common. I merely think that mother nature has a sense of humor and she proves it by sprinkling a few Y chromosomes around for comic relief.



Answered 6 years ago by Old Grouch

0
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Yeah, I totally agree. We've set the potty back on terra firma, and he occasionally goes in there to visit and say "hi" I guess. He seems to be trying to sneak up on it or something. I'll be in there checking on laundry, and he'll wander in and give the potty a sniff, notice me noticing, and saunter off...

So, he seems quite resolute in his decision to continue to bless the great outdoors. I've been giving him the month "off" as it were, and I think I just plan to continue to introduce him to the City Kitty, which is the toilet tray that sets in the toilet, and hope that he'll "make friends" with it. I suppose that if my goal was to no longer have to clean the litterbox, I have achieved that perfectly.

It's funny, but on some of the cat potty sites (yes, there are several), I noticed that the large orange tabby cats seemed to have the greatest difficulty in making the transition, often taking months, rather than weeks. Also, Erik has a very developed sense of self esteem, and he tends to avoid anything that might be deemed "humiliating." He gets quite annoyed when we laugh at him, and gets oh-so pouty about it. Flattened ears, swishing tail, and the whole nine yards. Very much a "Y" chromosome thing, I would think :D

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

0
Votes

It's finally over. We are no longer traumatizing poor Erik by forcing him to evolve.

While we thought that he was only going outside, it seems that Erik was in fact using his scratching post as a secondary litterbox. This is especially sad when you consider that the post was his only other possession in the universe. After a ton of carpet steaming, the removal of the old post, and rearrangement of the bathroom, we've let him off the hook and moved his old potty back into its private little alcove. He immediately began using it again.

Erik is just one of those cats that don't take to trauma well. I'm quite certain that he would never adjust if we moved. I'd be worried that he'd always be looking for his old yard. So, the massive trauma of his potty shooting off the phone books was, to quote my husband, "a deal breaker." we are both quite certain that he would have succeeded if this had not happened, but I guess it was just too much.

So, lessons learned here: Know your cat and what he/ she can handle. Know when to say enough is enough. Don't use phonebooks to support the litterbox of a 20 lbs. cat.


Back to scooping!

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

1
Vote

That is not the ending that I hoped to read.

It isn't what you and your husband planned for but at least you've accomplished a couple of things:

    you left valuable info for some other cat owner in the future who wants to tackle the change for their pet; andyou've brought more than a couple of smiles to at least one face around here!

Guess that makes the score something like:

Humans trying to change critters: 7 or 8

Cats who know what they prefer: 257,987,365,134,239.

Thanks for letting us in on the saga.

Answered 6 years ago by Old Grouch

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Ha! Thanks for sticking with us through the whole thing. Your encouragement was great!

Answered 6 years ago by eliz1bef

0
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Hi everyone my name is Chad and I'm going to continue this thread by adding my own cat potty training story which is just begining now...

So we have a mid sized cat named Yoda and we just bought City Kitty. The kit came a few days ago and I had already moved Yoda's litter into the bathroom which he was totally fine with. I moved cross country by car with him without a single acident and he adapts remarkably well so I just though "Oh this is going to be a breeze!" But it's off to a shaky start. I hadn't discovered yet the idea of raising his litter so, following City Kitty's instructions I removed the box which was right by the toilet and installed the cat training tray with litter and the included cat nip. He didn't take to it at all and in one day had made an accident in the living room...

SO.. I put the training tray aside and brought out the litter box again which I will try to raise off of the ground in a few days maybe...

I'll keep you posted!

Answered 5 years ago by ChadandYoda

0
Votes

Hello! This is Chicago Cat Nannies. In our experience, 99% of our cats have rebelled against City Kitty within a year.

Positives: Kitty will go in the toilet for several months correctly 2) No litter box scooping.

Negatives: 1) The bathroom/house smells when you get home because kitty can't flush and 2) Kitty will suddenly stop using the toilet after about a year and find other places more desirable = your bed etc.

Our opinion: It's unnatural, kitty rebels and develops litter box problems.

Suggestion: Don't do it.

Source: http://www.chicagocatnannies.com

Answered 5 years ago by Guest_97062505

-1
Votes

Oh yes.... I'm on round 2..... I created a documentary of a 'real life' experience not the savvy marketing -- its easy as 1-2-3 ! Long story short, $170.00 vet bill because my cat was so stressed out.. (he was having blood in his stool). I waited 2 months and just tried to start yesterday.. My 1 cat does great ! The other, I just found a load of poop on the floor next to the toilet.... So frustrating... I'm ordering an extra tray now and will not put any holes in it and try again. I taped their litter box to the toilet for a while just so they got used to jumping up there.... They may help in your situation....

Good luck !

Answered 5 years ago by Sphynx Mom

0
Votes

I used in for my 7 month old kitten. Very messy because you put litter into shallow pan that unevitably gets all over floor. Process took about 6 or 7 weeks from day one. I havent had a litter box in the house for a couple of months now. The worst thing is you have to flush the toilet, but otherwise I couldnt be happier. no accidents. Visitors amazed. great product


Answered 4 years ago by jml

0
Votes

Yea, and if your cat hasn't died yet or you gave up, then you're ahead! This woman DOESN'T respond to customers! She is ALL about the money, and today on Shark Tank I saw her promoting yet another worthless product! I was sucked into this, and got the litter that is flushable (VERY expensive) and all my cat did was play in it- the litter was strewn all across the bathroom, litter everywhere, and I couldn't just lift this thing up and remove it EVERY time I had to use the toilet, clean around the rim, the seat, the floors, need I go on? It is a fantasy concept, but it will NOT work with 99% of cats! DO NOT be suckered in!

Answered 4 years ago by susan54

0
Votes

My kitten's 7 months old and it took him two months (up until today) for him to use the toilet without any litter, which is awesome progress! I took away the training plate thing yesterday and although he peed no problem into the toilet last night, he resorted to pooping into the bathtub just now! So close! He doesn't seem to want to have his hind legs stand on the toilet seat but I'm sure another week with the last stage will get him back to using the toilet! ^-^ Exciting! Don't give up guys :D patience is key!

Answered 4 years ago by angymartinez




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