Another cat question, concerning multiple cats and their poop.
After months and months, it finally seems like our cats (Max, older; and Doppler, younger) have found their niches and are living more or less harmoniously. Max has really chilled out and the fighting (and biting/scratching people) has dramatically reduced.
There's still one problem... Doppler will not use the litter box while Max is around. Max does harass him when he hears scratching in the box, so Doppler tends to wait until we put Max in the office before we go to work. This is really the only remaining reason we put Max in the office, and we'd like to work this out so that they can both enjoy the whole apartment while we're at work.
Currently, we have two boxes, both covered, one in the office and one in the dining room. Doppler uses the one in the dining room; Max uses both of them. A complicating factor is that, while both cats are out and about, Doppler tends to stick to the kitchen and the bedroom. When Max is in the office, Doppler will run around the whole apartment. Doppler will tend to poop on the floor in the kitchen if he's not given alone time with the litter box (this is especially a problem Monday mornings, since we tend to be home during the weekends and Max doesn't go in the office as much).
What can we do to stop Max attacking during litter box time, and how do we convince Doppler the box is safe to use? I think relocating the box may be a good idea - the dining room is pretty exposed - but the other options aren't terribly appealing. Putting the box in the kitchen has a bit of an ick factor, and putting it in the bedroom means we may be woken up in the middle of the night. The bathroom is too small to accommodate a box; there is a closet that it may fit in, but then Doppler will be cornered if Max decides to pounce on him. Is there a way we can (without cutting holes in anything) restrict access to one of the litter boxes so that Doppler could get in but Max could not?
Far too much detail about cat poop, but I'm at a loss as to how to solve this.