Good question, Sophie. The word litter in English dates back to about 1300 and meant “bed” and later around the early 1700s it came to mean pieces of junk on the floor. A possible explanation for our use of the word litter today (junk, kitty litter, litter of kittens) could be because beds back then were commonly made of straw, kittens could be born on it, straw could also probably serve as kitty litter, and it would then become junk.
Hope this helps!
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