It might itch your ears every time your cat scratches the floor. You must have noticed that this is not an independent action.

It rather happens when your pet has just used the litter box. Seeing this reason, you know that it indeed calls for attention.

It might not be a pleasant sound to hear but your cat will not stop scratching if its litter box is too small, if the sides of the tray are low, or if the litter box is dirty. 

And it can be curbed by making amends in any of the situations.

Read on to learn better how to stop your cats from scratching the floor after using the litter box.

Why Does My Kitten Scratch The Floor After Pooping?

Scratching the floor is a regular cat activity, though the causes for the behavior are different.

Cats who scratch the floor or the wall after using the litter box are usually expressing a statement about the litter box or the litter.

The cat box is frequently too small for the cat, or there is insufficient litter or too much litter in the cat box. If the litter box isn’t clean enough, cats may engage in this habit.

The cat litter should be around 3 inches deep in the ideal situation. This is deep enough for the cat to bury her waste completely.

Litter boxes must also be scooped daily and dumped, cleaned, and replenished with fresh litter every few weeks. You should consider using litter boxes.

Most commercial litter boxes are usually too small for most cats. Using uncovered Sterilite storage containers with a capacity of 66 quarts would work better.

This is because they are large, clear storage containers that the cat can easily turn about in and dig into to its heart’s content once filled with around 3 inches of litter.

Why Does My Cat Keep Scratching The Floor?

Ideally, your cat will scratch inside the litter box to bury its poop, effectively burying it.

This assures that the odor is also buried with it. There are a few reasons why they will scratch at the floor:

  • The litter box is too tiny

The most common reason for your cat scratching the floor is because the litter box is too small. It’s likely that your cat has outgrown its box.

  • Sides of tray are too low

If the tray sides are too low, excrement and odor may run over the sides and your cat’s instinct is to hide its poop, hence, scratching. 

  • The box has to be cleaned

Humans do not have as good a sense of smell as cats. If your cat uses its litter box and scratches the floor next to it afterward, it’s likely that its litter tray has a strong odor.

Why Do Cats Scratch To Bury Waste?

Cats are biologically programmed to hide their poop or at least the smell of it. Consider the untamed ancestors of the domestic cat in the wild.

Wild cats are predators who must keep their presence disguised at all times. This is a concern with cat waste, since cat urine has a strong odor.

It’s a matter of life and death for cats in the wild, therefore they’ll do anything to mask their scent.

Wild cats must conceal their waste from both prey and predators so they can eat and avoid being devoured.

This is because their prey and predators can trail them by the odor and abort their mission. Cats will bury their excrement on the earth to disguise their presence.

You will have seen this habit if your cat goes outside to perform its business. Although your home is nothing like the wild, your cat keeps the instincts that it inherited from its wild ancestors.

Litter Box Recommendation

Knowing that the state of your cat’s litter box contributes to the reason it may scratch after using it, you must consider your cat’s preferences while choosing a litter box.

You may need to switch from one litter tray to the next until you find the correct one.

Box Dimensions

Obviously, the size of your litter box will be determined by the size of your cat. While going to the bathroom, your cat should not feel claustrophobic.

According to a study published in the Journal of Veterinary Behavior, most cats prefer a larger litter box than the one they currently use.

A cat’s litter box should be as least as big as your cat, with enough room to turn around. To make sure, measure your cat from the top of their head to the end of their extended tail, and buy a box that is at least that big.

Some cats like confined spaces. When they require privacy, they may feel more secure in smaller spaces. It’s all about trial and error.

Sides of the tray that are higher

To avoid spilling, get into a box with walls that are at least 5 inches tall. If your cat has a habit of kicking or spraying its litter all over the place, consider 8 to 12 inch high walls.

However, keep in mind that your cat, especially if it has stiff limbs, needs to go in and out of its litter box with ease.

If that’s the case, choose one with lower walls because your cat’s capacity to use the tray is the most vital factor.

Hooded or Not Hooded

There are many sorts of litter boxes, and one of the differences they have is whether or not they have a hood.

Most cats don’t care whether or not there’s a hood, according to research published in the Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery. The most important thing is that you maintain and keep the box clean.

It should be noted, however, that there may be more to it than simply the hoods when considering hooded versus non-hooded litter boxes.

Because they have little space in their homes, owners often opt for a hooded box, which gives the cat more solitude.

Cat Litter Types

The sort of litter you use can make a big difference in how odorless your cat’s excrement is. The following is what scientific investigation has discovered, according to the Journal of Feline Medicine and Surgery:

  • The cats showed a preference for clay substrate litter.
  • The difference between scented and unscented litter is minimal.
  • Cats have shown a propensity for using odor eliminators in the litter box.
  • Changing The Container

Replace one box with another by placing the new one next to the old one. This is significant because:

  • Your cat is likely to prefer the box’s original placement because it is familiar with it.
  • This is a wonderful technique to see if the box is the source of the issue. Your cat should naturally use the new litter box.

How To Clean a Dirty Litter Box

Above all else, keeping your litter box clean is the most important component in preventing your cat from scratching after he or she has pooped.

Follow these steps to make sure you’re cleaning your cat’s litter box properly:

Fill your cat’s litter box with fresh litter

Add 2-3 inches of a substrate to the litter box. Some cats enjoy burrowing deep. If your cat is one of them, choose a depth of at least 3 inches.

It’s possible that you’ll have to experiment to figure out what depth your cat prefers.

Cleaning out Cat Poop

Pick up cat excrement at least twice a day to keep your cat’s litter box clean. Keeping your cat’s litter box clean will keep your cat clean.

Because of a chemical called bentonite, clumping litter will glue to the poop. Put the waste in a plastic bag and tie it before throwing it away.

After each scoop, add to your cat’s litter to make sure it is enough.

Replace Litter 

Depending on the type of litter you use and how often you clean your box, you need to replace it around twice a week.

If you have clumping litter, you can replace it every 2 to 3 weeks instead of every 2 to 3 months.

Urine settles at the bottom of the box, hence, the non-clumping litter will need more frequent changes. Because urine lingers longer than cat excrement, it causes odor in litter boxes.

Scrub The Box

When you replenish the cat litter, scrub the box. Avoid using harsh cleaning products, especially those that have a strong odor.

Citrus (orange and lemon) smells should also be avoided. Cats may detect these odors and avoid litter boxes if they don’t like them.

If you’ve done everything, to keep the litter box clean and spacious, your cat might need to be groomed, cleaning its nails after pooping.

Your cat might just be trying to clean out dirt from its paws by filing down its nails. It could also be a habit that your cat has cultivated. 

For example, the cat’s mother may have taught it to scratch after pooping. Kittens will imitate their mother’s habits, whether or not they are functional.

You’ll need to break your cat’s habit if you want to fix this problem. Distract it with a toy before it scratches to stop the activity.

Scratching after pooping isn’t dangerous, but it is a sign that something needs to be done.

If you’ve done everything, you can to keep your cat’s litter box clean and spacious but he or she still scratches, it could simply be a habit. You will Training will be required to break the habit.

References:

Senior Cat Wellness: Why Do Cats Scratch The Floor After Pooping?

Reddit: Why does my cat scratch the floor for 30 seconds after using the litter box?