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Oliver’s Mom
Oliver’s Mom, Prof Trainer & Behavior Counselor
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 283
Experience:  20 yrs Trainer/Behavior/Rescue focus:dog/cat-human relationships;dog/cat behavior modification metho
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cats: potty..litter boxes..week and we never leave any poop in the box

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I have 5 cats in my home and one is having potty problems. She is two years old and has never had any problems before. We have two litter boxes (just bought a brand new one) and they are cleaned at least twice a week and we never leave any poop in the box for any period of time. I am positive that it is not medical as I was home all day with her and she had no problems. I think it is behavioral and I do not know how to treat that. We have not brought any new animals in the house nor has anything changed in her daily routine. I can't help blame myself as I have babied her but I think this problem would have started prior to now. I have called the vet who suggested I purchase a "Litter Pan attractant" however I can not seem to find that at the local pet stores. I have asked this question before and only received one response. Please advise as I am not sure what to do.....
I'm more than happy to help you -
 

Would you please answer:

 

Describe for me the potty problems she is having with as much detail as possible...
Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Oliver’s Mom's Post: She has never had any problems before now using the litter box. She normally goes pee-pee twice a day (once in the morning and once in the evening). She is not straining or going in the box with no results. She is not hiding or behaving any differently than normal that is why I think this is a behavior problem. I was home with her on Monday and made an effort to take her to the litter pan and she did not have any problems. This morning I was getting dressed for work and when I saw her she had just peed on the rug and was trying to cover up her mess. She is spoiled rotten (i.e. i hold her and pick her up) however I thought if she was going to have trouble it would have occurred prior to now.
Actually, her age may be the reason she is having this problem now and not prior.  Cat's become mature anytime between 1-2 years of age.  And it is at this time when behaviors, of any sort, can show up 'out of the blue.'  And it sounds to me like she may be in competition, or being territorial with the other cats in the house. 
 

I would try is getting her a litter box for her alone.  The reason to do this is to eliminate any  possibility she may have about competing for it's use OR she may be very picky and need the litter box changed at least daily.  Some cats are like this once they mature and if there's one poop or one clump of urine in the box they just won't use it!  If you can set this box somewhere she tends to feel comfortable and frequents often, it will help.

 

You will also need to clean anywhere she has pee'd with a pet stain and odor remover - I really like Nature's Miracle for this job.  This will ensure you are getting out any smells of her past she may still be able to detect.

 

I have found litter attractant product for you to look at in addition.  Available at Petco Stores on online at www.petco.com is a litter with an attractant in it's ingredients called "Pet Gold." 

Oliver’s Mom, Prof Trainer & Behavior Counselor
Category: Pet
Satisfied Customers: 283
Experience: 20 yrs Trainer/Behavior/Rescue focus:dog/cat-human relationships;dog/cat behavior modification metho
Oliver’s Mom and 3 other Pet Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Oliver’s Mom's Post: I have purchased the "Cat Attract" litter for her and hopes it will help. Have already bought the stain remover and sprayed it on the rugs she seems to be staying away from it....Will email back if I need additional help. Thanks.
Thank you for accepting my answer - I really appreciate that!
 

Well, it sounds like you are 'on a roll' in doing what needs to be done.  My fingers are corssed hoping when I hear back from you it will all be positive.  When the time comes to contact me, you can use the "Private Messaging" (PM) service to reach me.  This is for "chatting" purposes.  If you have more questions to be answered, we do ask you contact us through posting as you have done here.

 

Best of luck!!  Thumbs Up
Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Oliver’s Mom's Post: HELP!HELP! Having trouble still with my litte girl cat. She is okay as long as I take her to the litter box (but can't do that all the time). Bought the litter box attractant and does not seem to be working any other suggestions?????

 I agree it would be inconvenient for you to take her to the litter box all the time!  It's interesting however, that she does okay if you are with her when she needs to use it - could this mean she does not feel safe or comfortable in this area?  Takae a look around from her level - are there any mechanical items (fridge, freezers, etc) that turn on/off and could spook her?  Is it near a high traffic area with people coming and going?  What about an open window - again with random noises that may startle her?


What about your other cats - do you see them following her into the litterbox area possibly annoying her?


let me know your thoughts....

Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Oliver’s Mom's Post: The "main" litter box is in the laundry room (next to the freezer and washer/dryer) however it has been in there ever since she was little. I have had this cat since she was 3wks old. Her brother has no troubles??? None of the other cats mess with her. At times she starts up with her brother to get him to chase her then cries when she does not get her way....We even have an extra bedroom, "cat room" that has all of their toys in it and the other litter box which is in a quiet corner. This cat is rotten I tell ya and it is my fault and I don't know what to do.....

Looks like I'm going to have to get Ms Kitty on the phone and have a talkin' to her!


Alright - so it seems we have ruled out as many possibilities that can be thought of right now - except for two.


One would be you have been such a good owner you spoiled her rotten by escorting her to the litterbox - and now she expects it!  This would mean (and you probably won't want to hear this) she will have to be isolated to a very small area - just her, a litter box, food/water, toys and that's about it.  Reducing ther area of access reduces the possibility of pee'ing in inappropriate areas.  This would have to be done until she consistently show's you she can use her litterbox and nothing else.  But before you give her free access to the house, you would then increase the size of the area and repeat - until you have complete confidence she can be trusted.


The second possibility is a health issue.  I realize she does not show any signs, symptoms, left you a note, or has done anything for you to believe there's something medical going on - yet, cats are very good at hiding illness and honestly, you can't rule it out until she has been thoroughly examined.  If this option isn't taken and she does have an illness - we could be talking about this for many months to come!


Those our my thoughts as of tonight.  Your thoughts now?  (in just so happens I'm flying into Dallas tomorrow night - tell her if she doesn't straighten out, I'm going to come and toilet paper her cat room!  )

Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Reply to Oliver’s Mom's Post: Well I think I have figured out some of her problem and it is not all my doing (thank goodness).When she goes to the bathroom her brother will wait for her to run out of the litter room and chase her so I think that upsets her. He is a little wild man (totally opposite of his sister). So I am going to try and contain him and keep him away from her when she goes to the litter box. In the meantime I am taking her potty twice a day and that is working but I will try your first suggestion as I can't keep doing this... I sincerely XXXXX XXXXX of your help as this has been a huge headache... :)
Customer: replied 11 years ago.
Help!! I am trying this isolation for her (breaks my heart to see her cry) to try and use the litter box by herself. She gets nervous I think when I put her in the room (so I give in to her as I don't want her to panic). Consistently been taking her to the potty and it is getting harder and harder to get her to go when I am standing there. Getting frustrated.....

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