By CBS3 Staff

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — You may think your cat is misbehaving but they may be stressed out. And that may not be the only problem. In this week’s pet project, Carol Erickson shows us ideas that will help your four-legged friend.

Erickson mentioned that litter box aversion can be a big problem with cats.

But there are some basic rules to help avoid that and they are, having one more litter box than you have cats. Also putting the litter box in an easily accessible but quiet area, another rule is choosing a litter that your cat likes, not necessarily one that you because it is easier for you.

A study from behaviorists at Tufts University found that one of the most common of all non-medical litter box aversions is stress.

The study found that stress for a cat can be a huge reason why they do not want to urinate in a litter box. The stress may be caused by having difficulty with another cat in the household.

If this is the case, Erickson suggests, separating their food bowls and litter boxes so they do not have to cross paths.

Separation anxiety is another possibility for litter box aversion, despite cats having a reputation of being very independent. A way to help with that is, increasing your playtime with your cat and enriching their environment with you as one of their play toys.

Erickson also says that boredom can play a role, so giving them plenty of exercise, intermittent social contact and just playing with them can help reduce stress.