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Dr. Adam
Dr. Adam, Veterinarian
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Experience:  Over twelve years of internal medicine, surgery, and preventive care.
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My cat keeps peeing on the carpet. What can I do to get her

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My cat keeps peeing on the carpet. What can I do to get her to stop? I've taken her to the vet. There is nothing physically wrong with her.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Adam replied 2 years ago.
I am glad you have taken her to the Vet. So many try to start without this KEY element having been completed. Hopefully, while you were there a full blood panel with thyroid testing and a urinalysis was completed. If not, then I am sorry to say you will have to go back. There might not be anything "physically" wrong with here that is obvious from exam, but there very well still could be something "physiologcially" wrong with her otherwise. You will need those tests to be sure. For example, can you imagine scolding your cat and telling it that she shouldn't pee outside the litter box only to find out there is a urinary tract infection or crystals in her urine which make it feel like she suddenly has to pee? Or to make her feel like the litter box is causing her pain and so she avoids it? Yep. That's the problem.

So, all of that MUST be completed.

However, sometimes there is nothing physically wrong. It's more of a behavior problem. And sometimes there is something wrong but we can't tell from tests (interstitial cystitis).

The problem is, and this is where the frustration comes from, it is often hard to get this problem to stop. It is the number one behavior problem reported in cats, and one of the MOST common reasons for relinquishment of pet ownership.


Here are some options that you can try at home if not done already:

Clean all inappropriate sites with an enzymatic cleaner. Use a citrus deodorant spray or double-sided tape to discourage the cat from visiting problem areas.

<a href="http://www.amazon.com/Natures-Miracle-Stain-Remover-Trigger/dp/B0000TWBXA}(click here for Nature's Miracle) It is the ONLY thing I have found that eliminates the odor. Placing chairs or mats over the spots does not get rid of the odor obviously, just makes it harder for the pet to use it. Those are good ideas, but I have a few others.

You can consider adding a litterbox in the house (in general when there are issues such as this, the recommendation is to have 1 more litterbox than the number of cats in the house) An example is 3 cats = 4 litterboxes. Even if she is the only cat, she is getting older. Maybe try adding one in a location that is easy to get to, doesn't require any manipulation on her part, and is semi secluded or private.

You can also add different types of litter in the house (clumping vs non clumping, scented vs unscented) like your Vet has described. Keep in mind, you might not chose the litter she likes. I usually recommend a smorgasboard of 3-4 different kinds. Let her decide which one she likes best. Put all the boxes in one area with the different litter and then observe. It is usually easier to use cardboard boxes that can be thrown away, and buy littler in small amounts. PetCo and PetSmart will allow you to buy in bulk from a bin. That way, you only buy what you need for the experiment.


You can also place the carpet runner you use for desk chairs upside down so the little plastic spikes are facing up - in the area that they urinate - cats do not like to walk on this and will then avoid this area - hoping to use the litterbox.

Aluminum foil is another product they do not like to walk on an can be placed in areas of elimination.

There is also a product, Feliway - which emits a hormone/phermone to reduce stress to help in behavioral situations just like this! (CLICK HERE)

Some cats have done well when medicated. Ask your vet about medications for cats to help with urination disorders.

Please feel free to ask any follow up questions!
Thanks for your question,
Sincerely,
DrRalston

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- Removing the covers of litterboxes so they are more open


- I have even had owners that have purchses storage containes, such as rubbermaid containers, not made for litter but are MUCH larger than cat litterboxes to give them a large area.


- Placing the litterboxes in areas of less traffic in the house to give them more of a private area to urinate (and defecate)



I hope this information helps!
Dr. Adam, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 2095
Experience: Over twelve years of internal medicine, surgery, and preventive care.
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Dr. Adam
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Cat Veterinarian
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Over twelve years of internal medicine, surgery, and preventive care.