A cat’s litter box should not be put in the garage because it increases the chances that your cat will not use their litter box and will find someplace more comfortable within the home to do their business. There are several reasons your cat most likely won’t appreciate their litter box being in the garage.
REASON #1 NOT TO PUT LITTER BOX IN GARAGE: SAFETY
Your cat wants to feel safe when they use the litter box. Going into a dark, cold room that’s unfamiliar to them and probably full of all kinds of unfamiliar smells won’t make them feel safe. Most garages are used for storage and to your cat, items piled up look like places their predators could be hiding.
It’s especially dangerous for the litter box to be in the garage if you park vehicles in there. Your cat may be in the garage when you drive your vehicle in or out and there’s the opportunity for them to escape, or worse yet, be run over.
REASON #2 NOT TO PUT LITTER BOX IN GARAGE: CLEANLINESS
For your cat to use the litter box each and every time they have to go to the washroom, it must be kept clean. In the wild, cats wouldn’t eliminate in the same spot over and over. They cover their waste to hide their scent so they don’t attract predators. Those instincts are built into your housecat, and they have a desire to defecate and urinate in a clean spot.
When the litter box is in the garage, and you must put shoes on (maybe even a jacket if it’s the middle of the winter) to clean the litter box, you’re less likely to do so regularly. Not to mention, you’re not likely walking past the litter box multiple times a day when it’s in the garage. So you don’t have the visual or scent reminder to clean and change it.
REASON #3 NOT TO PUT LITTER BOX IN GARAGE: COMFORT
Cats like to do their business in comfortable, familiar spots. They want to know there aren’t any threats of being attacked; this is instinctual to them. It’s unlikely your cat spends much time hanging out in the garage, so it’s not familiar territory to them and they’re weary about what’s hiding behind each box, cabinet and object.
Not to mention, the garage may be cold, dark, and damp. Conditions your cat isn’t fond of when it comes to using the litter box.
REASON #4 NOT TO PUT LITTER BOX IN GARAGE: ACCESS
Your cat needs access to their litter box 100% of the time. If you’re not leaving the door to the garage open at all times, your cat may go to use the litter box, find they’re locked out, and they’ll find a corner of the house, a soft blanket, or a basket of laundry to go instead.
WHEN CAN IT WORK TO PUT THE LITTER BOX IN THE GARAGE?
You may be able to put the litter box in the garage if you can add a cat door so your cat always has access, and if you can block off an area for the litter box so it’s well-lit, comfortable, and doesn’t allow your cat to escape.
You also want to make sure you’re keeping the litter box clean and will remember to scoop it every day.
There are some ideas on the internet on how to create this type of setup in your garage, such as this:
What’s most important when finding a place for the litter box is to avoid any situation that may cause your cat to stop using their litter box. If they start peeing or pooping around the house, it’s a more frustration situation to deal with than simply having the litter box in your home.
It can also be a difficult situation to correct so prevention is key.
You may also be interested in: