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my elderly cat has decided to no longer poo in the liter box...

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  • my elderly cat has decided to no longer poo in the liter box...

    Buckley is an elderly cat, she's gotta be around 17 or 18 by now. We got her as a rescue when I was 8 and I'm 26 now.

    She's always been a great cat, indoor/outdoor but mostly indoor now (we have an addition on my parent's house that is a garage, finished basement and loft that she lives in.). In the last 2 weeks she has completely stopped pooing in her box. She still pees in there but she refuses to poo. She started to poo on the garage floor so my mom moved her box down there.. she still won't use it.

    Her poo isn't any different than it ever has been, there's just a lot of it. Why would she stop using her box? What can I do?
    http://www.clarkdesigngrouparchitects.com/index.html - Lets build your dream barn

  • #2
    Sometimes if they are getting arthritic/ a UTI, it can hurt to "assume the position" so they associate the pain with the litter box. Maybe consider a vet check.


    • #3
      Along the same lines, maybe she needs to walk as she poops, i.e. cant do a semi-seated position, but walk and squeeze it out while walking.
      Does she "rack" or walk like a camel (left font and back, right front and back)? That would mean she is arthritic. My 18 yr old does this interspersed with regular walking. She also stopped "covering" her pee/poop with scratching attempts. It could be the litter is less smelly (Arm and hammer) or her nose is less good, so she doesnt feel it needs to be covered. And if her poop is really hard she may not be drinking enough water.
      I just got a subcutaneous fluid setup for my cat. I havent used it yet, but when she gets a dry coat I will. I also have pumpkin puree to give her to help soften her stool.


      • #4
        My cat is retarded and I mean that in the most loving way. He sometimes will poo outside the box. He does this because he does not like to get his feet dirty in the litter box. I clean said litter box after every. single. use. Its clean.

        He likes to stand on the sides and sometimes he just hangs his bottom off the wrong side. (I told you he was special)

        He did not always to this, he started it about 2 years ago...he is 11 now.


        • #5
          Awww.... whenever I hear of old animals doing this I pray to god that when I am old and senile I can poop in the toilet.


          • #6
            My cat did this in his old age, too. I believe it was difficult for him to crouch and contort. Consider a much bigger, much shallower litter box. That might make it more inviting, plus it's a bigger target if she does need to walk-and-squeeze as mentioned above. Then consider treating her for arthritis.

            Dry poops hurt to pass, so you could also consider sub-cutaneous fluids or wet food only. At this point, you're not saving her teeth for anything (if she even has any), and sub-q fluids on cats are just about the easiest thing there is.
            Disclaimer: My mom told me that people might look at my name and think I had an addiction other than horses. I don't; his name was Bravado.


            • #7
              Originally posted by BravAddict View Post
              My cat did this in his old age, too. I believe it was difficult for him to crouch and contort. Consider a much bigger, much shallower litter box. That might make it more inviting, plus it's a bigger target if she does need to walk-and-squeeze as mentioned above. Then consider treating her for arthritis.

              Dry poops hurt to pass, so you could also consider sub-cutaneous fluids or wet food only. At this point, you're not saving her teeth for anything (if she even has any), and sub-q fluids on cats are just about the easiest thing there is.
              Agreed. It also might not be a bad idea to have her thyroid checked. Thyroid problems are common in older cats, and can make them constipated. Even she's still going regularly and her stools don't look different, they might feel hard and dry to your cat while they're coming out.
              "In order to really enjoy a dog, one doesn’t merely train him to be semi-human. The point of it is to open oneself to the possibility of becoming part dog."
              -Edward Hoagland