Thursday, January 8, 2009

Big Day - Moving the Pan into the Toilet

So the basic process for this whole thing goes as follows:

1) Make the pan smaller and use flushable litter
2) Move the pan up the side of the toilet
3) Move the pan into the toilet
4) After a month, cut a small hole in the pan
5) After cat gets used to it, make the hole gradually bigger
6) Once the hole is practically gone, take the pan away

Of course, if it were this easy we wouldn't have books and blogs and things telling us in detail how this process works.

As of December 2oth or so, I decided it was time to move to step 3 - into the toilet!!

This sounds really fun and great - but certain things had to be considered:

1) My toilet seat is angled inward, making it hard for Rex especially to balance well on it.

Solution: I bought a new $20 toilet seat from Target. It had a flatter seat and was made with an antimicrobial plastic material. This made me feel a little better, and the cats have a much easier time standing on it.

2) A turkey roaster disposable pan is great for holding turkeys (or say, cats) when it's resting on something like a table. Once you suspend it, the risk of puncturing through can be higher. Cats stand on their toes when they poo, and the small surface area of their foot made me a bit nervous. I actually punctured my first one with the litter scooper and had to replace it.

Solution: Two turkey roasters, with the inner pan's rim folded in. This provided a stronger surface, and will help later with the hole puncturing process (more on that later).

3) Securing a litter pan - If you have a couple of toilets in the house then duct tape the hell out of that pan and don't worry about it. But what happens when you have only one. What are you supposed to do? Un-duct tape it each time you want to go to the bathroom? No.

Solution: Velcro strips! Oh man, how nice it is to just lift the pan out to use the toilet, knowing those Velcro strips can hold something like 40 lbs before they split. These have worked great. Just lift the toilet seat and place some strips on all four sides of the toilet rim, making sure to measure where they will meet up with the pan.

4) The newspapers next to the toilet seat - If you just take them away, then they will not recognize where the pan has gone.

Solution: Like everything else in this process, gradually take more and more away until they only need a couple for a step stool (if desired.)

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