How Often Should A Cat Poop?

It’s understandable that you can’t really get into your cat’s head and figure out if he or she is having trouble with their bowel movements. The only thing you can do is some detective work. That involves keeping a close eye on your cat’s litter box. I do this for mine in order to check on the smell and look of her droppings, as well as how often she goes in a day. Of course, I do it to clean her litter box as well!

What Is Autism?

The question how often should a cat poop isn’t a fun one for everyone to ask, but for some it’s absolutely necessary. We might like to sit and pretend our cats fart rainbows and never have to ‘go’, but the truth is everybody poops.

How exactly will you know if your cat is having a problem, though? For you to figure something is strange, you’ll need a baseline of what’s ‘normal’ to work with. Here all I can say is that it all depends on your kitty, of course. Every cat is unique and an extension of this maxim is that every cat’s poop patterns are unique too. The frequency of your cat’s elimination actually depends on a number of factors, which will affect every cat differently.

The Age of Your Cat

Kittens poop very frequently. It’s really all part of growing up. Adult cats, on the other hand, poop at least once a day. Note that this isn’t a constant across the board. Some adult cats poop more than once every day and some cats poop twice every three days. The important thing is to note what’s normal for your cat.


Diet also matters a lot when determining the normal frequency of a cat’s elimination. If you tend to give your cat low-quality food, her body won’t digest much of it since it will mostly be useless. That leads to more frequent bowel movements. Also, if you feed your cat more often, she’ll have more bowel movements than usual. If you plan on giving your cat a diet change, don’t do it abruptly. This will most likely lead to diarrhoea. You should change the diet gradually over the course of a week or two. Start by mixing in some of the new diets with the old one in her food and steadily step up the ratios over time.

Your cat should also have enough water in their diet. Cats that don’t drink enough water suffer a lot more from constipation. If you’re giving your cat dry food, then make sure she drinks more than enough water. Otherwise, consider giving her wet food.

The Environment

Cats are very sensitive to the environment around them. Being in a stressful environment can affect them in severe ways, including adversely affecting their elimination patterns. Let’s start with the litter box: if it’s dirty, or your cat doesn’t think it looks very good, she’ll probably stay away from it. She may retain her bowel movements or decide to go somewhere else. You might not know where because it’s probably going to be a hidden spot. More than likely you’ll find an empty litter box and think your cat is sick, only to realize she’s being pooping elsewhere when the smell finally catches up.

Another reason your cat might stay away from the litter box is if she’s undergoing social stress. In an environment with lots of pets, including multiple cats and/or dogs, your cat might not feel very comfortable pooping in the litter box. Cats are very particular about their privacy and can refuse to poop if they don’t feel that they have enough of it. She might even be getting ambushed in there by other cats. Be sure to look out for this. The litter box should be a safe space for your cat.

Health Conditions

This should probably be at the top of the list. After all, the first thing that springs to mind when you think your cat isn’t pooping often enough is that it might be experiencing some kind of illness.

Your cat’s pooping frequency can be due to a variety of medical conditions. These include arthritis, megacolon, blockage, hyperthyroidism, parasites, hairballs, and a bunch of other possible reasons. If your cat is obese, for example, she’ll tend to poop a lot less than normal cats her age and might even suffer from severe constipation.

In such cases, you should take your cat to the vet and talk about changing its diet to something a little more appropriate. Sometimes your cat might be on medication, the side effects of which could possibly include reduced or increased pooping frequency. Whenever your vet recommends medication for your cat, be sure to ask them to expound on the side effects so you know just what to expect.

When Should You Worry About Your Cat’s Pooping Frequency?

Now, just to be sure, how often your cat poops if it poops more than once a day, that doesn’t mean you should be worried. Sure, normal adult cats do poop an average of once a day but every cat is unique. You should, however, be worried if the change in its pooping patterns is because of diarrhoea or some kind of illness, or is accompanied by abnormal looking stool. You should also check to see if your cat appears uncomfortable while pooping.

Straining while pooping can be an indicator of one two things. Either your cat is experiencing constipation or it’s straining to pee, in which case it’s going through urinary obstruction. Both aren’t great news. However, constipation isn’t always terrible news. Urinary obstruction, on the other hand, could be fatal. So the next time your cat appears to be straining passionately in the litter box, check to see if it’s struggling to poop or to pee. If it’s the latter, then you should rush it to the vet so they can check what’s wrong.

Not going to the Loo much? Time to visit the Vets

If your cat hasn’t had a decent poop in a couple of days, you should probably take it to the vet. Pooping more than once a day is one thing; pooping with a frequency of lower than that is something else entirely. Either your cat is holding back the poop, or she’s going through some serious discomfort that’s affecting how often she poops. Taking her to the vet will help you get to the bottom of it sooner and solve the problem in the most effective way possible.

In order to stay on top of your cat’s pooping habits, you’ll have to make the litter box your friend. Sure, this isn’t the most pleasant of friends, and it’s not particularly fun to look at, but it’s totally worth it and pays off eventually. Looking at the litter box only takes a few seconds every day but pays of greatly going forward. You’ll always be quick to know when something’s going wrong. At the very least, you’ll get to know what your cat’s poop looks like when it’s normal and how often your cat poops in a day. If anything goes wrong, you’ll be able to tell immediately.

Clearing Up the Poop Story

So how often should a cat poop? The answer, as you probably know by now, is that it depends. Your cat will likely have her own regular pattern of elimination and you should check her elimination behaviour against this pattern,. If she deviates in a serious way, be sure to take her to the vet. That extra attention you show your cat makes her feel loved and appreciated. At the very least, it keeps her happy and healthy.

Rebecca Welters

Yes, I am that weird cat lady with 200 cats and live in the darkest corner of the city where no one dares to go! Joking! But I am a cat lover and have 2 Ragdoll cats called Toby, he's 3 years old and Dory, she's 8 years old. I'm 36 years old and live in the quiet town of Washington.

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