Avoiding the litter box. If your cat suddenly stops using the box, the problem is likely medical, so see your veterinarian. Beyond that, know that you must provide your cat with a "bathroom" he or she likes. Cats are fastidious animals, and if the litter box is dirty, they look elsewhere for a place to go. Clean the box frequently — twice a day at least —and make sure it's completely scrubbed clean and aired out on a weekly basis. Cats can also be picky about box type and filler. Start with the basics: a large box with unscented clumping-style litter. Location is important: Your cat's box should be away from his food and water, in a place he can get to easily and feel safe in. Consider location from a cat's point of view: Choose a quiet spot where he can see what's coming at him. A cat doesn't want any surprises while he's in the box.
If you compromise with your cat, you'll find that most of the challenges can be easily managed, leaving you free to enjoy life with your purrfect pet.
Dr. Marty Becker, "America's Veterinarian," is the regular veterinary expert for Good Morning America and The Dr. Oz Show. Follow him on Facebook and Twitter at DrMartyBecker.