Review Of The Purina Second Nature Dog Litter Box System

Review Of The Purina Second Nature Dog Litter Box System



I had previously raised two lhasa apso dogs who spent most of​ their lives living in​ high-rise condominiums. Instead of​ having to​ take them down an​ elevator to​ go outdoors to​ eliminate all the time, I trained them to​ use newspapers in​ a​ spare bathroom. Since they were both initially paper trained as​ puppies anyway, I chose to​ continue this method for them. Indoor newspapers worked quite well for the rest of​ their lives as​ my dogs were able to​ go to​ the bathroom whenever they needed to. The only problem is​ that the papers tended to​ get rather messy and smelly. if​ plastic liners were not placed underneath the papers, newsprint ink would be imprinted on the ceramic tiles of​ my spare bathroom floors. On some occasions, urine puddles would flow off the papers as​ well as​ the liner resulting in​ situations which required immediate cleaning since urine became trapped between the plastic liner and the floor. Despite these complications, I was relatively satisfied with the paper method for my little dogs.

After both of​ my dogs had passed away after long lives, I took a​ break as​ a​ dog owner for several years. When it​ was time to​ become dog owner again, I had made up my mind to​ train my new pair of​ lhasa apso puppies to​ use papers indoors as​ well. This time, it​ turned out that Purina had come out with a​ new litter box system called Second Nature designed for specifically for dogs. it​ was basically modeled after similar setups for cats but the dog litter consists of​ large pellets made up of​ recycled newsprint. Purina also introduced a​ litter box that has one side cut away lower to​ facilitate easy entry for dogs. I’m not totally convinced on the advantage of​ this particular feature since my lhasa apsos have no problems stepping into the box from the side. But for Purina to​ introduce such a​ system to​ the market, I must not have been the only dog owner who considered indoor elimination a​ better alternative to​ outdoors for smaller breeds. The product is​ now very popular especially among small dog owners living in​ apartments and high-rise condominiums without easy access to​ outdoors.

Purina recommends a​ slow transition from papers to​ their Second Nature system by placing newspapers over their dog litter at​ first. The company also suggests crate training at​ the same time but instead of​ taking the dogs outside, they are taken to​ the litter box. Newspapers are also placed all around the floor area of​ the litter box itself. My puppies needed some time to​ get use to​ the box so while they were being introduced to​ it, they were eliminating on both the newspapers on the floors as​ well as​ inside the litter box. Once they got use to​ the idea of​ going inside the box more often to​ eliminate, paper coverage on the surrounding floor area was gradually made smaller. When they started to​ use the litter box all the time, the newspapers on the floors were gone for good. The next step was for them to​ get use to​ the actual pellets of​ the litter. Since there were still newspapers covering the dog litter, the puppies were still technically using papers but at​ least they were getting accustomed to​ stepping on the pellets underneath. Papers inside the box were gradually reduced a​ bit at​ a​ time exposing more dog litter. Over a​ few weeks, the puppies gradually saw more dog litter than newspaper inside the box. Eventually, all newspapers were totally eliminated as​ my lhasa apsos finally got used to​ the box filled with litter only.

In my mind, the litter box system is​ less messy since all dog urine and feces stay inside the box. Actually the Second Nature pellets absorb urine much better than normal newspapers. The odd time, one of​ the puppies may get a​ bit lazy and have just the front paws inside the box while the hind legs are still outside resulting in​ urination on the floors. in​ these cases, the puppies have to​ be nudged a​ bit so that they are completely inside the box. This is​ part of​ their training. The only complication I observed with the pellets is​ that both puppies like to​ chew and eat them at​ times. Purina claims that ingestion of​ the pellets itself is​ not harmful to​ the dogs since they are just compressed papers. This will result in​ more feces production until the dogs can stop this habit. The dog litter is​ non-clumping so it​ will not get stuck inside the canine digestive system unlike normal clumping cat litter. it​ is​ considered unsafe to​ use clumping cat litter as​ a​ substitute for the Purina dog litter.

Purina Second Nature was launched only in​ the United States so as​ a​ Canadian resident, I had to​ go down to​ the U.S. to​ purchase the system. I started out with Purina’s cat and small animal litter called Yesterday’s News which is​ basically the same as​ Second Nature except the pellets are much smaller. But at​ least the Yesterday’s News pellets are non-clumping and therefore safe to​ use for dogs. Purina changed their Second Nature pellets to​ be around the same size as​ Yesterday’s News and many users including myself, found that my dogs ended up tracking the pellets all over the place. After speaking to​ a​ Purina spokesperson, I was informed that the Second Nature pellets will be made back in​ the original larger size soon. This will reduce the tracking significantly again. Purina will also introduce Second Nature in​ the original larger pellet size to​ the Canadian market. Naturally, this is​ good news for me and other owners of​ small dogs who would like to​ use an​ alternative to​ going outdoors for elimination, especially during cold bitter Canadian winters. I would definitely recommend the Purina Second Nature dog litter system to​ other small breed dog owners, especially when it​ returns to​ its original larger pellet size.




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