Do Bengal Cats Need To Be Litter Box Trained?
Inappropriate elimination, or defecating and urinating which occurs outside of the litter box, is always a possibility that most cat owners are aware of.
Some Bengal cats may occasionally have the same issue, and the usual fix to the problem is proper litter box training.
Of course, your feline friend may have already been litter box trained by the breeder, before you even adopted it. So, do Bengal cats need to be litter box trained?
When it comes to Bengal cats and litter box training, here is all the important information you need to know:
1. Bengal cats are more prone to litter box issues.
As you are probably familiar with, Bengal cats are partly descendant from the Asian Leopard cat; this fact leads some people to believe Bengal cats are more likely to behave "wild" and "go against the rules", in a number of situations.
This also includes elimination; some people believe Bengal cats are more prone to doing their business outside of the litter box, simply because of their wild ancestor.
However, we have to stress that this is simply not true, as inappropriate elimination is not a problem specific to any breed; it may happen with any cat, and it is definitely not more likely to happen to a Bengal cat.
In line with this, it is not more difficult to train a Bengal cat to use the litter box.
2. Why do some Bengal cats do their business outside of the litter box?
If your Bengal cat does its business outside of the litter box, that doesn't mean that it is acting out, but that it is experiencing a certain problem.
Usually, the trigger to this behavior is connected with the environment; something from the cat's environment may be causing it stress, which leads to inappropriate elimination.
Sometimes, the trigger may also be a physical problem, so if you suspect this to be the case, we recommend that you consult a veterinarian, as soon as possible.
In some cases, the problem causing inappropriate elimination may be the litter box itself; considering cats have a stronger sense of smell than we do, a dirty litter box is even more likely to bother them, than it bothers us.
In line with this, we recommend that you clean the litter box regularly and thoroughly, to encourage your pet to use it. It is important to dispose of the dirty litter frequently and to clean and disinfect the litter box every week, preferably.
3. Ways to train your cat to use the litter box
Although most Bengal kittens are trained by the breeder to use the litter box, once you have adopted the kitten, you can also help strengthen its knowledge.
For example, squirting liquid catnip on the litter box, may encourage your pet to use it regularly. Also, an unused teabag of black tea, when mixed in with the litter, may have the same effect.
In addition to that, we advise that you provide a treat for your cat whenever it uses the litter box properly, as positive reinforcement is always most effective.
Doing little small gestures like making a clicking sound every time your cat uses the litter box and then give your cat a treat. This way, your pet will associate using the litter box with getting a treat, and view it as something truly positive.
Another important matter to consider is the type of litter; in cases when you want to use a different kind of litter than the one the breeder used when teaching the kitten, you have to make this change gradual.
We recommend that you start by mixing the old and new kind of litter, gradually increasing the amount of the new litter, over a couple days or weeks, until you completely stop adding the old litter.
Unless your cat is blind like Xena, they may use the litter box in peculiar ways like the video below 🙂
In conclusion, a Bengal cat is usually trained as a kitten to use the litter box, by the breeder, but once you have adopted it, you can also have your own role in training.
In order to encourage your Bengal cat to use the litter box regularly, we recommend that you change the litter frequently, keep the litter box clean, and use catnip for extra motivation.
Remember, positive reinforcement is always recommended, as nothing helps train a cat better than the promise of a nice treat.