Ugh, how do we get her to stop? She has peed on 3 or 4 pieces of furniture including a leather chair, a velvet, sofa, and a silk chair (so it's not limited to one type of material). A little background… We got her around 6 or 7 months ago from the shelter, she was an owner surrender and about to be put down and I just couldn't resist her sad eyes. She is around 4 years old and is our 4th cat (3 females and 1 male). They are all indoor cats. We have 2 litter boxes on opposite ends of the house, and would get more but we honestly don't have anywhere to put them. Any suggestions on how to get her to stop? Let me know if you need any more info! Thanks in advance!
How does she get along with the other cats. One of my cats will go outside the box because the other cats harass her. I put her box up on the dresser and solved the problem. Another was going by the front door so I put a box there for him. With the number of cats you have, you need at least two more boxes, preferably 3 more. Put a box in the room lose to the furniture she is peeing on. I ordered some stuff called Car Odor Off from Amazon that works really well to get rid of the smell
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Could it be a urinary tract issue? I recall when I was a kid one of our cats started peeing on things because of a bladder infection or something (details are fuzzy). Is she being harassed by your other cats? That happened to one of my family's cats that is now mine. She peed in bad places because one of the other (now deceased) cats was beating her up, and my mom's dogs were chasing her whenever she was on the main floor of the house.
I took the cats when I went away to school and after about 2 months of wondering what I had done (the peeing hadn't stopped) there is peace in the apartment, though I'm still careful.
I do know/think? that when they pee somewhere bad you have to get rid of the smell because they will go back there to pee again. My mom had this odour gone spray that worked really really well. The furniture that was peed on was also professionally cleaned and mattresses had liquid proof covers just in case.
Not a ton of help but I sympathize!
Oh last thought, maybe try a different type of litter? If I change to a different type of litter all he** breaks loose from both cats, they are very particular creatures.
ETA: I have a litter box for each cat. They are super particular about those as well, in two different places we have lived one is used for peeing and one is used for pooping always without fail.
Thank you for all the suggestions! I forgot to add that she has been thoroughly checked out by our vet and he said she was fine physically. She is harassed by the other cats (one is about a year old and is just trying to play, but she and the male will get into little scuffles some).
Out of curiosity does the male like to hang out where she is marking?
It got to the point with one of my cats that she didn't want to come downstairs at my mom's house because of the dogs, and was peeing on anything that spelled like them.
ETA my "theory" and that's all it is, experience with my cats and nothing more(!) was that even after they moved with me I had taken a bunch of stuff like blankets etc. from my mom's that still smelled like her dogs to the cats. After the first months, some trial and error and serious washing the dog smell went away and the peeing stopped except for the very rare occurrence now.
Mine started marking when she had urinary issues. The vet said she looked fine too. Based on suggestions I got on TOB, I switched her to a high quality canned food (much higher water content than dry food- cats won't drink enough to offset the water deficiencies that come from eating kibble) and her marking disappeared. She adores kibble so I occasionally would give it to her as a treat but noticed that she'd immediately start marking again the minute she had any dry food.
I don't know if that's your cat's issue but it's a cheap and easy thing to try a few days of canned food to see if it has any effect on the problem.
Did you have her checked by the vet before or after she started peeing? Checking for a UTI is not a standard part of an annual exam unless there's something going on. If that comes back clear, you may need to add another box, play with the litter type/brand, clean more often, or play with the type of box (some don't like lids, some do, etc). Is she declawed, by chance?
When my cat started peeing on the floor I had urine drawn and a complete blood panel. It wasn't an infection, it turned out to be diabetes. So make sure you tell the vet you want to include enough tests to diagnose anything that could lead to excessive or urgent peeing.
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Thank you for all the suggestions--please keep them coming! She was checked by the vet after she started the peeing so that was what he was specifically looking for a cause for. The litter boxes are cleaned 1-2x a day, depending on how dirty they are. She is declawed, and we've played around with different types of litter and this seemed to be the one that everyone likes the best. Also, we have them all on the Feline UR cat food (and we just keep some out all the time for them) b/c our male used to get UTI's and this is what our vet recommended to help with it (he hasn't had one since we've used this food). But I can definitely try feeding her a bit of wet food instead to see if that helps.
First, definitely switch her to canned. Cats are created to pull most of their hydration from the tissues of their prey. Dry kibble is significantly dehydrating for them and they are not designed to process the large amounts of water they'll drink when a strictly dry diet. Living in a constantly dehydrated state wreaks havoc on their urinary tract.
Second, unless your vet obtained a clean urine sample and checked for signs of infection and crystals/casts, she needs a return visit. You haven't made it clear that her urine went to the lab, just that the vet checked her over.
Third, I hear you when you say you don't know where to put more litter boxes, but 2 boxes for 4 cats is at least 2 boxes too few. If you really want to get the peeing under control, you must find space for at least another box or 2. Especially with the pee-er being a relatively new addition, she needs a clean box that isn't rife with the smells of the other 3 cats.
With or without a UTI, crystals or stones, her peeing hints at a cat who feels territorially threatened. How does she get along with the other cats?
Don't try 'a bit of wet food'- try exclusively high quality canned (like EVO 95% Chicken) for a week or two. Symptoms come back in my cat if I even give her one small dish of dry food as a treat- she immediately starts urinating on furniture.
If the Feline U/R is dry, it will still cause problems. Get the canned version, or better yet, get a high quality cat food. The ingredients in the Feline U/R are horrible.
Agree with needing more litter boxes. Also agree with various locations. I know you said it wasn't possible, but if everything checks out ok with the vet, I would guess it's because of the other cats. This was recommended to me by my vet, along with multiple feeding/watering stations.
1) She's been declawed, so she may have nerve damage that makes litter-scratching super painful. Have you tried different types of litter or even wee-wee pads?
2) More litter boxes. Just find somewhere to put one even if it's in a terrible place as a temporary measure. If she's shy/bashful/intimidated she will avoid the box and select somewhere she feels "safe" to pee.
The first thing I would do would be to get some wee-wee pads (because they're cheap), demonstrate to her she can use them (scratch scratch squat) and place the pads RIGHT by the 2 litter boxes. If she stops peeing on the furniture and presumably is using the pads, then she's probably telling you she wants to use the box but it's just not acceptable to her.
You can also get some turkey tins as temp litter boxes to place in various places. Again, if the peeing stops then it's likely she objects to the location of the existing boxes and/or the qty of the boxes.
Yes, having wee-wees and random tins around the house sucks and is weird and kinda gross, but it's only temporary while you troubleshoot.
Good luck. I imagine her potty habits are what had her at the shelter to begin with. But don't worry- it's possible to reform the ones with even the WORST potty habits. However, you have to spend time figuring out what's upsetting them.
Our reformed pee'er also ended up abandoned for peeing on everything, but her FAVORITE place to pee was the STOVE. And she'd jump up and do it while you were there (so I'm told) and look at you like "DO YOU SEE HOW UPSET I AM? I AM FORCED TO PEE ON THIS STOVE TO MAKE YOU UNDERSTAND" Her peeing was caused by EXTREME anxiety. Once we addressed the anxiety her potty habits became flawless.
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My folks' most recent cat was a perfectly happy indoor kitty for close to 2 years. Got on well with the dogs (even played with them), had litter boxes situated throughout the house, was fed wet food. All of a sudden, Cat started inappropriately peeing in the house-- very random, too; sometimes on the back of a sofa, sometimes on the concrete floor in the laundry room. My mom took him to the vet, and spent upwards of $800 doing all sorts of tests, to no avail-- no UTI's, no diabetes, nothing indicating a physical problem. Vet suggested kitty Prozac, which my mom declined.
It eventually culminated in the cat peeing ON MY DAD while he was in bed-- the cat literally walked on top of my dad's bare back, squatted and peed right on him.
That was Kitty's final day as a housecat; he now resides in their barn. He would prefer to be a housecat, but at that point, my folks were so fed up, it was "barn cat" or euth.
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