My mother wants me to get her one of those fancy automatic litter boxes. She says she can't bend down to clean out the litter box. (She never cleaned it regularly before, I can't imagine what has changed. Therefore I suspect the management where she lives, an independent living facility, has made some demands that she hasn't told me about. And they haven't called me recently.)

So the real issue is that she can't take care of the cat. But I know that taking the cat away will be traumatic on all involved (me, her, and the cat). She tells me the cat kept her alive after her husband passed 3 years ago. (Kitty, I can relate! she tells me I kept her alive when my father divorced her.)

Two years ago, I moved her from her house, which was literally falling apart from neglect (she wouldn't let me help, adult protective services had to get involved), to an independent care efficiency apartment. The cat used the entire house as its litter box. She has a hoarding problem, refuses therapy. Between the cat's habit and her lack of housekeeping (they do clean her room once a week), I know it's bad in her tiny room. I've seen dryer sheets in the litter box.

I have control over her money and give her a monthly "stipend" and make sure that her rent and meds are paid for, etc. I have POA (I'm rep payee as well). I found a credit card that allows me to restrict where it can be used, which has been a great relief to me.

There is no one else; I'm her only child. She is in her (my) home state, I am 9 hours away by car, so I can't be there on a regular basis to keep track of her "reality". Of course I'm the "worst mother ever", and I tell her that I learned from the best. She is totally narcissistic and only is nice to me when she needs something. I plan to move her to my state soon; I am waiting for some benefits to be finalized. I think she needs to be in assisted living (without the cat).

She does not even remotely understand how pissed I am that they did not make a plan for their future. Any words of advice will be greatly appreciated. (Yes, I already know I should get therapy for myself! LOL!) Thanks.

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Oh, yes ma'am, it reeks. I know she doesn't clean it out. I think it's time for the cat to go. I am going to call the management today to find out if there are complaints. Hopefully she will listen to reason (loss of deposit, getting kicked out), but it won't be easy. She loves that cat.
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There is another option. They do have kitty boxes that connect to the toilet. Yeah.. you flush after the cat. Done.

As for the cat scared of it...I had lots of trouble with the automatic one, my cat saw it operate and wouldn't even go into the same room with it!
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Regarding the automatic litter box, there is one thing to take into consideration... will the cat even use it, or be scare silly of it? One cat usually means two litter boxes, as they prefer to use one box just for pee, and the other box for #2.

If a cat isn't using it's litter box, then there is either an environmental issue within the house [box not being scooped out twice a day] , or the cat has a urinary tract infection. Some cats don't like scented litter if your Mom is using that.

I can just imagine how her apartments smells from the dirty cat litter and from the hoarding.
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Another idea is to train the cat to use a puppy wee-wee pad placed inside the litter box. You start out with the pad at the bottom of the litter box, sprinkle some cat litter over it, and see what happens. It depends if the cat is one that digs then covers up big time... or the type of cat that walks through the little box, goes to the bathroom, then dashes out without covering it.... the latter is easier to train to the pad. 

I had one cat who would use the puppy pad... "blue sheets" are cheaper to buy, plus some vendors have second quality sheets that work well but much cheaper. Then whenever the box was used, the pad got folded up and tossed out.
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