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Dr. K
Dr. K, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 7544
Experience:  13 years experience as Veterinarian
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My cat is urinating right in front of me or on the bed when

Customer Question

My cat is urinating right in front of me or on the bed when I'm in it. Ive taken her to the vet & she is fine physically. Nothing has changed, no new people or animals in the house. I've cleaned and moved litter box, bought "Cat Attract" kitty litter, got the "Feliway" air difuser, she uses the box, which I praise her when she does. But she still also pees in front of me.
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. K replied 7 years ago.

For how long has she been doing this?
Does she ever defecate outside of the litterbox?
How many cats do you have in your house?
How many litterboxes?

Dr. K
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
She has just been doing this for last 3 months. I've had her for 3 years.
No, I have not seen or found any defecation outside the box.
She is my only cat, only pet. It's just her & I.
I have only 1 cat box, its the same one she's always had, house isn't that big.
Expert:  Dr. K replied 7 years ago.
It is good that you have taken her to the vet for an evaluation for this problem as this is always the first step. I am assuming the vet did blood and urine tests to rule out any possible medical reason for this problem. Now it can be looked at completely as a behavioral issue.

Most feline behaviorists recommend that you have one more litterbox than you have cats (but not to exceed a total of 7 litterboxes). So, if you have 1 cat, you should offer 2 litter boxes. The reason for all of these boxes is that as is true for their wild cousins (lions, tigers, etc.), many domestic cats do not like to urinate and defecate in the same place. They also often like their own bathrooms. So, adding litterboxes should be your first step. It is important that the two boxes not be in the same area, but rather are in two completely separate spots in the house.

Other steps that you can take if this first one does not work on its own include:

1) Change the litter substrate to something else, or if you have recently changed it, change back to what you were using before. Some behaviorists even recommend offering several different kinds of litter in several different trays all at the same time...cafeteria style. This allows the cat to peruse his choices and then you can see if he consistently always chooses one type over the others.

2) Move the boxes away from any noisy appliances (e.g.--laundry machines, dishwashers, etc..)

3) If there are hoods or covers on top of the boxes, remove them so that the boxes are open to the air.

4) Be sure that you scoop each box at least once daily

5) Make sure that the boxes are the right size. They should be at least 1.5 times the length of the cat.

6) Clean all areas that the cat has soiled well with an enzymatic cleaner to remove any lingering odor. This will discourage the cat from resoiling in the same area. I prefer to use one called Nature's Miracle, which you can get at any well-stocked pet store.

7) If the inappropriate elimination is in a specific location(s), place litterbox at those locations until the cat is consistently using the box; move gradually (1-2 cm/day) to a more appropriate location.

If after all of these modifications have been made, you are still having a problem, then it may be time to try some medication. Many cats who continue to have problems with inappropriate elimination respond very well to anti-anxiety medications (like Buspar or Clomipramine HCl). You can speak more with your veterinarian about the possibility of using a medication like this in your cat if necessary.

I hope that this information is of help to you, and I wish you the best of luck with your kitty. Please let me know if I can be of further assistance.

Dr. K

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