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calling all catladies and catmen: cat pees right next to food bowls, refuses to use litterbox... (Read 176 times)

    You guys. I don't even know anymore. Maybe someone here has a tip.

     

    So I have this kinda difficult cat. She's 8 years old and has always been a tough character to deal with (only likes me, bites/scratches others, hisses as her default form of communication, and generally has way too many opinions for someone with a brain smaller than a walnut). About 5 years ago she developed a chronic, incurable skin condition and really suffered for a while until we got it under control. 18 months ago I had a baby; kitty is not a fan.

     

    Recently kitty has developed a habit I simply cannot explain: she pees/poops in or around her food bowl! OMFG WHAT IS THAT ABOUT???? Nothing about the litterbox has changed - same litter, same level of cleanliness - but she just won't use it. Not only that, but peeing and pooping where you eat? Is a level of sick I cannot even comprehend. And yeah, she still eats there!

     

    I've scrubbed and bleached the heck out of that corner, and drowned it in a spray called UrinAttack that is supposed to completely neutralize the odors. It doesn't help - in fact, she seems grateful that it's so clean for her next use and will generally head right on over after I've scrubbed and pee there again.

     

    I just got a new litterbox and will stick it in the corner where the food bowls are, but I'm not really optimistic that this will help. Methinks kitty has finally just gone off the deep end and will either choose another corner or keep going where the food bowls are, whereever that might be...

     

    Does anyone have a tip for me? What would you do in this situation, cat owners?

     

    btw, I have another cat, sibling of Psycho Kitty, who is totally normal (well, ok, slightly neurotic but basically a nice cat) and who is not so pleased with recent food-bowl-as-toilet developments.


    old woman w/hobby

      My son's cat started doing something like that a while back.  In the end, once he changed

      the brand of litter he was using the cat stopped.

       

      mta:  daneda reminded me: He first took the cat to the vet and the vet et couldn't find any

      thing wrong with the kitty.  For some reason she had taken a dislike to her old litter brand Smile

      steph  

       

      OCD  If you don't laugh...   

      daneda


        Has she been to the vet?  Many times sudden peeing outside the box means something is going on with them...

          +1.  This has happened to me.  I used one litter for the longest time, then all of a sudden she "stopped liking" scented litter.

           

          My son's cat started doing something like that a while back.  In the end, once he changed

          the brand of litter he was using the cat stopped.

           

          mta:  daneda reminded me: He first took the cat to the vet and the vet et couldn't find any

          thing wrong with the kitty.  For some reason she had taken a dislike to her old litter brand Smile

          "When a person trains once, nothing happens. When a person forces himself to do a thing a hundred or a thousand times, then he certainly has developed in more ways than physical. Is it raining? That doesn't matter. Am I tired? That doesn't matter, either. Then willpower will be no problem." 
          Emil Zatopek

            One of ours is having urinary tract issues, and peeing outside the box is a symptom. She associates the litterbox with pain, so obviously she goes elsewhere.

             

            Going right next to the food is weird, but a trip to vet still sounds like a good idea. Urinary tract problems can be very painful, and I'm sure that could make anyone a little nuts after a while.


            Singer who doesn't run.

              We have one cranky cat who doesn't appreciate that she lives in a two-cat household.  Chewbacca pees happily in any litterbox available.  Kaycee hates to pee where Chewie does, so she pees pretty much anywhere else.  Not around her food, though, that's weird.

               

              We own a carpet steamer, we don't have guests over, and we will have to replace the carpet when Kaycee goes into the light.  Until then, we can't change it, so we just live with it.  Tight lips

              When it's all said and done, no one remembers how far we have run.  The only thing that matters is how we have loved.

                One of ours is having urinary tract issues, and peeing outside the box is a symptom. She associates the litterbox with pain, so obviously she goes elsewhere.

                 

                Going right next to the food is weird, but a trip to vet still sounds like a good idea. Urinary tract problems can be very painful, and I'm sure that could make anyone a little nuts after a while.

                 

                +1

                 

                It can also be retribution for having a toddler in the house. Make sure she has several places to lounge up out of reach, and that the litter box is well away from any area that your human little one has access to, yet still out in the open so that your kitty won't ever have a trapped feeling.

                2013 H1:  7 hours/week base.  Q3: Train for goal race.  Q4:  Goal Race.


                Bad Ass

                  When cats are stressed, they change their behavior and that sometimes includes peeing outside the litterbox.  It could be a UT infection as well, so I would have him checked.  Buy training pads and put them around the litterbox so that it does not pee your floor.  One thing that could also be is that the litterbox is dirty (or dirtier) than before (because of the second cat) and she refuses to pee there.  Did you change the litter recently?  That can also be it.  Or she might just simply be nervous.

                   

                  One thing that works for stress is having those plug in feromones.  I have them all over the house because I have 5 cats and some tend to get stressed more than others.


                  Good luck!

                  Damaris, Marathon Maniac, Ultra Runner

                  Blog

                  "The most powerful weapon on earth is the human soul on fire."

                  daneda


                    When cats are stressed, they change their behavior and that sometimes includes peeing outside the litterbox.  It could be a UT infection as well, so I would have him checked.  Buy training pads and put them around the litterbox so that it does not pee your floor.  One thing that could also be is that the litterbox is dirty (or dirtier) than before (because of the second cat) and she refuses to pee there.  Did you change the litter recently?  That can also be it.  Or she might just simply be nervous.

                     

                    One thing that works for stress is having those plug in feromones.  I have them all over the house because I have 5 cats and some tend to get stressed more than others.


                    Good luck!

                     

                    This reminded me... Be sure not to just change the litter regularly, but to scrub the actual box regularly.  Additionally, the boxes need to be replaced every so often as the plastic can absorb the smell...

                    xor


                      I'm going with UT issues (aka "crystals") or perhaps the kidney version.  Clean the box and de-stress... but it could be a medical thing.

                       


                      Needs more cowbell!

                        One thing that works for stress is having those plug in feromones.  I have them all over the house because I have 5 cats and some tend to get stressed more than others.


                        Good luck!

                         

                        In addition to all of the other great advice, definitely look into the Feliway plug-ins.  We recently moved and made sure to have several in the new house in different locations.  Our cats were still stressed-out (one is still tearing his fur out a little, though he otherwise seems his normal self).  I don't know if the plug-ins are helping much, but they are certainly not hurting.  I've read so many accounts where people have had super great results using these to calm stressed-out cats, so there seems to be some real usefulness to these in many situations.

                         

                        Another thing no one has suggested is the possibility that your kitty simply needs anti-anxiety meds.  Some pets (dogs, too) simply cannot tolerate major change, not even after a period where most animals would adapt.  Meds like valium could potentially be a great help.  We had a male who could not deal with all of the strays that would roam around our yard and mark our house (our cats have always been indoor-only cats).  He'd get so riled-up and start spraying (even though he was neutered) around windows and doors in retaliation.  One of our current cats (all male, all neutered, all indoors) has done similar things.  Out of the blue he'll spray (not pee -- he's urinating vertically and shaking his tail).  He's pretty much the dumbest cat I've ever known.  We've never figured-out why he does it.  It's not frequent and never has there been obvious reason for his behavior.  We simply clean it up and douse the area with Nature's Miracle.  We also limit the carpeting in houses, since cats are just hard on the stuff, even without peeing/spraying (one of ours refuses to use the dozen or so scratching furniture items we have in the house, preferring to sharpen his claws on the carpet.  We now have leather furniture, since he also wouldn't leave furniture alone, even with slipcovers).

                         

                        I adore cats, but they can really be stupid PITAs!

                        I shoot pretty things! ~

                        '14 Goals:

                        • 6 duathlons (1 Olympic distance)

                        • 130#s (and stay there, gotdammit!)

                        doctorjen


                          I have 3 cats and last year we hit a new low with the bathroom behaviors.  2 of mine are almost 17 years old (they are littermates and we've had them since they were 8 week old kittens) and the other is almost 8 and I swear developmentally delayed.  They are all spayed/neutered.  There seemed to be multiple issues that set them off - the younger one terrorizes the older ones since she has no sense, and we also moved to a new house, plus the old boys are old and arthritic.

                          We saw a cat-specializing vet who gave me a list of recommendations, and for the most part the issue has resolved.  (They had check ups and labs, too, and medical issues were ruled out)  1.  No litterbox cover - cats don't like to feel trapped.  2.  No scented litter 3.  Keep the box really clean - scoop every day 4. One litter box for every cat 5.  Put 1-1 1/2" of litter in the box, so kitty doesn't sink too much 6.  Move the litterbox to the cats preferred location 7.  Confine the cat with it's litterbox to a smaller area until the behavior resolves 8. Resolve whatever stress can be resolved. 9.  Don't bother trying to punish, or behavior modification - cats don't view pee/poop negatively and can't understand what you're trying to say.

                          We did all of the above, but the most important for us has been isolating the 2 old men from the younger nutty cat.  The boys are locked in one large bathroom and the younger cat in another bathroom anytime we are not home or at night.   They have their litterboxes, food, and comfy sleeping places set up in the bathrooms.  When we are home, all 3 are allowed to wander at will, although we will chase off the younger cat if she starts bothering the old men.

                          I originally felt very guilty about confining them, but the vet pointed out that living life confined was better than euthanasia, which was where we were starting to think we were headed.  The old guys don't seem at all unhappy living life in a smaller space - although they happily come out and hang out with us when we're home.  The younger cat is more aggravated by it, but our bathroom is as big as the average bedroom, plus she has a window perch, and really, she's fine.

                          We used Nature's Miracle on the carpet with some success, but I'm not sure anything ever completely gets out the urine smell (especially from the girl cat, weird as that is.)


                          Bad Ass

                            I have one like that.  He only thinks about meow, I'm cute, and I'm hungry.  Sometimes I swear he is not aware of any surroundings.  You can easily spook him even while he is watching at you.

                             

                            I have 3 cats and last year we hit a new low with the bathroom behaviors.  2 of mine are almost 17 years old (they are littermates and we've had them since they were 8 week old kittens) and the other is almost 8 and I swear developmentally delayed.  They are all spayed/neutered.  There seemed to be multiple issues that set them off - the younger one terrorizes the older ones since she has no sense, and we also moved to a new house, plus the old boys are old and arthritic.

                            We saw a cat-specializing vet who gave me a list of recommendations, and for the most part the issue has resolved.  (They had check ups and labs, too, and medical issues were ruled out)  1.  No litterbox cover - cats don't like to feel trapped.  2.  No scented litter 3.  Keep the box really clean - scoop every day 4. One litter box for every cat 5.  Put 1-1 1/2" of litter in the box, so kitty doesn't sink too much 6.  Move the litterbox to the cats preferred location 7.  Confine the cat with it's litterbox to a smaller area until the behavior resolves 8. Resolve whatever stress can be resolved. 9.  Don't bother trying to punish, or behavior modification - cats don't view pee/poop negatively and can't understand what you're trying to say.

                            We did all of the above, but the most important for us has been isolating the 2 old men from the younger nutty cat.  The boys are locked in one large bathroom and the younger cat in another bathroom anytime we are not home or at night.   They have their litterboxes, food, and comfy sleeping places set up in the bathrooms.  When we are home, all 3 are allowed to wander at will, although we will chase off the younger cat if she starts bothering the old men.

                            I originally felt very guilty about confining them, but the vet pointed out that living life confined was better than euthanasia, which was where we were starting to think we were headed.  The old guys don't seem at all unhappy living life in a smaller space - although they happily come out and hang out with us when we're home.  The younger cat is more aggravated by it, but our bathroom is as big as the average bedroom, plus she has a window perch, and really, she's fine.

                            We used Nature's Miracle on the carpet with some success, but I'm not sure anything ever completely gets out the urine smell (especially from the girl cat, weird as that is.)

                            Damaris, Marathon Maniac, Ultra Runner

                            Blog

                            "The most powerful weapon on earth is the human soul on fire."


                            Bad Ass

                              We have one cat in her separate bedroom because she has never seen other cats and cannot socialize with them.  It took her 9 months to accept Rubio into the room.  We keep her close during extended periods of absence.  She is the one that still poops outside the litterbox no matter what we do.  Patience and love, I say.

                               

                              I have 3 cats and last year we hit a new low with the bathroom behaviors.  2 of mine are almost 17 years old (they are littermates and we've had them since they were 8 week old kittens) and the other is almost 8 and I swear developmentally delayed.  They are all spayed/neutered.  There seemed to be multiple issues that set them off - the younger one terrorizes the older ones since she has no sense, and we also moved to a new house, plus the old boys are old and arthritic.

                              We saw a cat-specializing vet who gave me a list of recommendations, and for the most part the issue has resolved.  (They had check ups and labs, too, and medical issues were ruled out)  1.  No litterbox cover - cats don't like to feel trapped.  2.  No scented litter 3.  Keep the box really clean - scoop every day 4. One litter box for every cat 5.  Put 1-1 1/2" of litter in the box, so kitty doesn't sink too much 6.  Move the litterbox to the cats preferred location 7.  Confine the cat with it's litterbox to a smaller area until the behavior resolves 8. Resolve whatever stress can be resolved. 9.  Don't bother trying to punish, or behavior modification - cats don't view pee/poop negatively and can't understand what you're trying to say.

                              We did all of the above, but the most important for us has been isolating the 2 old men from the younger nutty cat.  The boys are locked in one large bathroom and the younger cat in another bathroom anytime we are not home or at night.   They have their litterboxes, food, and comfy sleeping places set up in the bathrooms.  When we are home, all 3 are allowed to wander at will, although we will chase off the younger cat if she starts bothering the old men.

                              I originally felt very guilty about confining them, but the vet pointed out that living life confined was better than euthanasia, which was where we were starting to think we were headed.  The old guys don't seem at all unhappy living life in a smaller space - although they happily come out and hang out with us when we're home.  The younger cat is more aggravated by it, but our bathroom is as big as the average bedroom, plus she has a window perch, and really, she's fine.

                              We used Nature's Miracle on the carpet with some success, but I'm not sure anything ever completely gets out the urine smell (especially from the girl cat, weird as that is.)

                              Damaris, Marathon Maniac, Ultra Runner

                              Blog

                              "The most powerful weapon on earth is the human soul on fire."

                              paulski66


                              miscreant

                                Cats are cheap. Hell, often they're even free.

                                 

                                Throw away your defective cat, and get a new one, preferably one that works properly.

                                 

                                You're welcome.

                                 

                                 

                                I'm happy, hope you're happy too...

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