How to let your cats come inside, without a litter box!

When we first got our kittens I really didn’t want them inside – at all.

I hate litter boxes in general and since I was pregnant, I wasn’t going to be able to clean it out anyways. {Toxoplasmosis is real, folks.}

Then Fall rolled around and there was a mouse in my house.

I didn’t think I was capable of hating any animal until I had a mouse in my house. I now know with complete certainty that I HATE mice. Like more than is normal. Like I could probably smash one with my foot and not feel bad.

Confession: When I read Abram Goodnight Moon and it gets to the part that says, “Goodnight little mouse,” I sub in “Go die little mouse,” in a sweet, sing-song voice. Just making sure I raise him right.

Ahem. Anyways.

I decided to let the cats in the house for a few hours every evening to see if that would help keep them away. {It does, by the way, to a point.}

Let your cats come inside without having to have a litter box!

I was worried about the cats going to the bathroom in the house but after a few evenings of me letting them in and then putting them back out after a couple hours, they understood. Cats are pretty dang smart and they don’t like to do their business just anywhere. Pretty soon they would walk over to the door and let me know they needed out.


This is one of those situations where really knowing your animals and taking the time to learn their body and vocal language comes in super handy. My cats knew that I had responded to important communication in the past {our bowl is empty, leave me alone while I eat this mouse, I am stuck in a tree and need help, etc.} and so they didn’t hesitate to let me know what they needed. Anyone with any sense at all sees the importance of having this type of relationship with their animals. Not that I’m perfect at it all the time, that would be a gross lie. But I try, and animals are good at reacting to the “tries.”


So, how did I inadvertently teach my cats to let me know when they needed out? I let them grow up 100% outside for a few months as kittens and then when we had an established relationship I let them inside. I set a pattern of appropriate indoor behavior over a few days and they picked it up from there.

I tested my theory out on a couple of new kittens we got about a month ago and it has worked like a charm. Say goodbye to your litter box! Who wants to collect poop in a box anyways?


Not I.

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