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I don't speak "cat" and there's been a communication break down.

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  • I don't speak "cat" and there's been a communication break down.

    Ugh. 3 or so months ago, I acquired a very sweet, tiny kitty. She is 4yo and about 6 lbs of petite cuteness.

    I am a dog person, but a mouse issues opened the door to a cat. Mice are gone, yay! BUT, within the past 3 weeks, kitty has started peeing inappropriately. On the dog beds, on laundry left on the floor, on furniture. She has a clean litterbox, organic grain free food, attention, and free roam of the house. She is using the litterbox to pee too.
    She will do it right in front of me. I just sprayed her with water as she squatted on an ottoman 15 feet away.
    She seems healthy, saw the vet a few weeks ago who gave her a clean bill of health, and is indoor only.
    I think she was outdoor before we acquired her. And she doesn't love the dogs, which I think is part of the issue. But other than letting her be indoor/outdoor or getting rid of dogs (NOT HAPPENING, my dogs are my children) I don't know what to

  • #2
    Inappropriate peeing is a vet visit, which needs to include a urinalysis. It is very often a sign of an infection. Once you've ruled that out, some back and we can discuss sterile cystitis, Feliway, various alternative litter options and anti-anxiety meds


    • #3
      Agree, sure sign of a UTI.
      *OMGiH I Loff my Mare* and *My Saddlebred Can Do Anything Your Horse Can Do*


      • Original Poster

        Ugh. Ok. Vet trip this week. But, if everything looks normal, can I fix this?


        • #5
          Originally posted by pinkpony321 View Post
          Ugh. Ok. Vet trip this week. But, if everything looks normal, can I fix this?
          If everything looks normal, equaling no infection? Sure, absolutely. It might involve a food change to an all wet diet, perhaps a different litter or box location, some kitty cosequin (in the case of sterile cystitis), a feliway plug in or collar, or some anti-anxiety meds. This is a list of possible things to try, not a list of EVERYTHING that would be required, so don't be too afraid.

          But a cat peeing outside of the box, just out of the blue? It's likely an infection, which will require a course of antibiotics, and then all will be well.

          While I do know one case of a kitty that just could not resolve her peeing issues--and her owners tried EVERYTHING, finally euthanizing the cat--the VAST VAST majority can be fixed with a few management changes (or some antibiotics, for infection )

          If you'd like to be proactive, putting the cat on an all wet diet and making sure you scoop the box every day (using a non-scented litter, in a place she feels comfortable in) will go a long way to making her happy about peeing in the box.


          • #6
            I had a cat start peeing inappropriately all of a sudden. After a vet visit where nothing was found wrong, I just happened to get up unexpectedly one evening. Kitty was sitting at the basement door (where the litter boxes are located) and his sister was blocking him from getting down there. I started opening up the door all the way so sis couldn't block the door and the problem peeing stopped. You say kitty doesn't like the dog much, could the dog be blocking the path to the litterbox?
            Whatever you can do, or dream you can, begin it. Boldness has genius, power, and magic in it. Goethe


            • #7
              ^ this. I def agree she needs a visit to the vet as it is likely a UTI, but also wanted to add - make sure she can get to the box & have privacy. If you have a lid on the litterbox, take it off. Stupid me didn't realize our terrier (who likes the cats) was initiating a game of tag, while the cats were in the box....til the kitteh came running out with the job half done. By taking the lid off, it allows them to keep an eye out for predators aka doggies.


              • #8
                I would definitely check out the dog/cat interaction to make sure she feels safe and comfortable getting to the box and while in it. She may have done it in front of you because she feels protected/safe. When we got a new puppy, we installed a dog door/cat door in a closet door and put the litter box in the closet so he could get to his food and box without harassment. Has been great for keeping him happy and the dog out of the litter box and cat food


                • #9
                  WHile I agree that checking for a UTI is important, having been the veteran of many "inappropriate pee-ers" I will totally disagree that it is the most likely reason. From experience here, I will say that STRESS is a major culprit! I had grown up with cats my whole life, but they always seemed to be litter mates and we did not have dogs. When I got my own home and started getting rescues etc., and also got dogs, I found out that some cats cannot handle this communal living. They may SEEM fine, but when you finally get the issue figured out you see a HUGE difference in them and realize how much stress they were under.

                  Some examples - caveat here that all are spayed/neutered and I did bring them to the vet to be sure no UTI and even to try kitty Prozac...

                  Sylvester - declawed stray who was getting beaten up at the farm my husband works at. When they discovered he was declawed, he came home with my husband. First night he peed on me in bed. After that, any time one of us was napping etc he would pee on us. Peed on any rug or soft surface (laundry or clothes on the floor etc.). Worked with him by getting Cat Attract litter, pheremones, 1 litter box per cat and putting a litter box in just about every room. Gradually moved the litter boxes toward where we want them (took months), and even had him on kitty Prozac for about 2 months. That was about 3 years ago and he has not had an accident since.

                  Harry Potter - Feral kitten that I rescued - was about 4 months old and had never used a litter box. He would pee on our bed. Thank GOODNESS I have waterproof matress covers on all of our beds because of Sylvester, so the mattresses did not get ruined, but it was a bad scene. Started using Kitten Attract litter with him. Praised him when he went in the litter box and scared him when he did not (when I could catch him). Unfortunately he got out of the house and was missing for 6 months. He came back and has been home for about 3 months now, and has just started peeing on the dog bed and in the pantry. I do see what the issue is, and am not sure I will be able to resolve - one of my older females is being very aggressive with him and Harry is a lover, not a fighter. Trying to work through that.

                  Peaches - long haired female stray brought inside when she was about 6 months old. Seemed to get along fine with the other cats and was really friendly with one of them. My large dogs did not bother her, but my chihuahua puppy would chase because she ran. Other 2 female cats would growl at her, but no fights. She was fine for about a year and then I noticed that someone was peeing on the leather couch. There were several suspects and it took me a long time to narrow it down to her. I think one of the males also started since she had marked it. Could not resolve the issue with her - she had started just hiding under the hutch most of the time and was miserable. Could not re-home her because how can I ask someone to take a cat that pees on the furniture? Brought her out to the barn and locked her in the feed room to acclimate her, but she climbed out through the rafters and has been an outdoor kitty ever since. The good news is that she stays in the yard and in our shed and is fat and happy out there - the difference in her is amazing.

                  Common theme is stress here. I will say, the Cat Attract litter is wonderful!

                  Good luck with your kitty - I would watch her interaction and try to put an extra litter box where she can get to it easily in case she is afraid of the dogs. I would also recommend the Kitten Attract litter. It is expensive but worth it, and you can just top-dress the less expensive litter as you go on.


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by witherbee View Post
                    WHile I agree that checking for a UTI is important, having been the veteran of many "inappropriate pee-ers" I will totally disagree that it is the most likely reason. From experience here, I will say that STRESS is a major culprit! I had grown up with cats my whole life, but they always seemed to be litter mates and we did not have dogs. When I got my own home and started getting rescues etc., and also got dogs, I found out that some cats cannot handle this communal living. They may SEEM fine, but when you finally get the issue figured out you see a HUGE difference in them and realize how much stress they were under.
                    Very good point, and I totally agree with you, witherbee

                    Originally posted by witherbee View Post
                    Sylvester - declawed stray who was getting beaten up at the farm my husband works at. When they discovered he was declawed, he came home with my husband. First night he peed on me in bed. After that, any time one of us was napping etc he would pee on us...
                    and I'm really sorry, but when I read this part of your post, literally the first thought that popped into my head was: 'witherbee should change Sylvester's name to "R. Kelly."'

                    I'm glad that he is no longer peeing on you guys, though.
                    Originally posted by Martha Drum
                    ...But I don't want to sit helmetless on my horse while he lies on the ground kicking a ball around without a bridle while Leatherface does an interpretive dance with his chainsaw around us.


                    • #11
                      Cosequin for UTI

                      I just want to say, and I do not know if the cat has an urinary problem but......after years of having the issue with cats off and on, and using veterinary meds and even "the operation" to help with stones/sand, I read on Coth a year or two ago where someone, wish I could remember whom, so I could give her credit, said to use kitty cosequin for UTIs.

                      So when Tobey, the ex-barn cat got an UTI, I bought cosequin from Jeffers and IT WORKS GREAT! No more UTIs. No more drugs. I take a capsule, open it, and dissolve it in a very small amt. of water, then use an "eye dropper" to get it down his throat. (don't have to use all in the glass, just get as much into the dropper as possible.)

                      I do this 2x a day as a preventive measure, and he's not had any problems since.

                      I have had cats in past years who would come to me and cry when they had UTIs as they are very painful, like kidney stones.
                      But the cosequin is great for it. I buy 4 or 5 bottles at the time and get free shipping from Jeffers.

                      Whoever posted that on Coth originally needs to get credit for it.

                      I think, since I've owned many cats over many years (one of mine will be 20 yrs old tomorrow) that the main reason for cats whizzing outside of their litter box is not changing the litter daily. I tell people that they wouldn't want to use a toilet that had not been flushed for a day or two. Cats have to step into those litter boxes, so cleaning daily is important.

                      Second cause is the UTI which is common in closely kept house cats. I've had decades of experience with this also as my cats always ate (and still do eat) a large amount of sea food.

                      Third is when cats are angry that another cat has come into the home. (Or if some guy shows up and teases them as one of my ex-boyfriends used to do. Davis, my tomcat, whizzed on the guy, LOL LOL.) And some cats whiz on things because they want to go outside. Then you need a cat shrink or a new boyfriend.


                      • #12
                        My two cents. If she KNOWs where the litter box is, it is accessible, private, and clean and she has used it. If she is not peeing frequently small amounts, acting uncomfortable in the process, Sure take her to the vet and have her checked for an infection, BUT if you do any reading about cat behavior, MAny cats pee in innapropriate places to MARK, To smell themselves in places they do not feel secure. Male and female. I can try to find some good behavioral material for you. The dogs bed is a BIG clue!
                        I would be VERY surprised if she has an infection. She is displaying classic insecurity in her surroundings and is marking to feel more at home.
                        Does the dog harass her?


                        • #13
                          Maybe kitty doesn't like the litter? Or as others suggested, privacy in bathroom matters really makes a difference also. Maybe you need another litter box, or scoop a lot more often.
                          You can't fix stupid-Ron White