why does my cat sometimes pee outside the litter box
As you know, cats are extremely sensitive little creatures. There are a million,
bajillion reasons why they might pee outside their litter box. It s up to you, as their parent, to figure out just what their problemo may be. No doubt, you may never really know the reason but you owe it to your sweet kitty to try to find a solution. Once you solve the problem, that may help narrow down the cause. Kinda backwards, I know. But suffice it to say there is a reason. So there is a solution. First of all, if this is new behavior, please,PLEASE take your cat to the vet to rule out any medical reasons. A UTI, for example, can be deadly to a cat if left unattended. Plus, have you ever had a UTI? OMG and ugh. You can t blame your cat for squatting everywhere and anywhere if that s the problem. Another reason may be stress. Do you have a new pet in the house, a new baby, a houseguest, a new house? Even new carpet can send your kitteh into a tailspin and out of the litter box. Be patient with your cat and try to reduce the stressors if you can. Some situations can t be controlled (new house or carpet) and hopefully will correct themselves over time. If it s a new pet or baby try to give your cat as much attention as possible and don t force the new family member on your cat. Try to keep them apart and keep your cat feeling confident about his territory and place in the home. Here s an easy one: did you change anything about the litter box situation?
Switch litters? Switch locations of the litter box? Drastic changes can be a problem. If you re switching litters, try to ease into the switch by mixing the new kind in with the old. Little by little, increase the amount of new litter until that s all you re using. If you re switching locations, show him where the new box is. If you have multiple locations (which is desired but not always possible) don t switch them all at the same time. Is he marking or does he have litter box aversion? I ll get into this in more detail in another post but marking is a territorial and instinctual behavior that involves a different set of issues. Aversion is when something is keeping your cat from going tinkle where he should. These are just a few reasons. We all know the feline psyche is a complicated one. I ll continue to share the reasons for these problems to help you consider all possibilities in your quest to solve your baby s issues. As always, let me know your solutions or reasons. The more information we can share with others the better! One of the many reasons a cat might end up in the animal shelter: peeing outside the litter box, peeing on the couch or just in front of the litter box. Why do they do this? IБll explain it to you! Note: this is about peeing, not spraying. you can read more about spraying. The big question why cats donБt do it in the litter boxБ It can be anything.
Think about tension between cats, something happened and thatБs why he doesnБt want to go on the box anymore, stress, separation anxiety, fear or your cat is trying to feel (emotionally) better and safer. Medical reason First you need to rule out a medical condition that could cause this behavior. Peeing outside the box, whether this is on the couch, in the laundry basket, near the box or in the corner of the living room Б it needs to be checked out by the vet. Your fluffbal can have urinary infection, crystals in his urine, painful joints because heБs a senior, and so on. Always rule out a medical condition before you speak of a behavioral problem. Not the right box You have boxes with a cover, without a cover, high sides, low sides, square boxes and boxes who БcleanБ itself. There are so many different boxes, that you may not know where to start. For old cats, who may be a bit stiff in the joints might prefer a box with low sides because he might experience difficulty or pain climbing over the high sides of the litter box. But maybe you have a litter box with a cover and itБs just way too small for your big cat. Take the cover off and your cat suddenly has so much more space to turn around on the box. Not to mention that a lot of cat litter is dusty. So when you have a cover over the litter box, he might breathe in all the dust from the litter when heБs trying to hide his pee/poo.
And letБs not forget that cats like look around and keep an eye on things around them while doing their business in the litter box. Hidden behind the washing machine, in the basement, in the attic, hidden in the bathroomБ Why would you hide the litter box? If you scoop out the box regularly and clean it out, the box shouldnБt smell. And would you like to sit down on a toilet thatБs next to a loud and rumbling washing machine? Place the box in an open spot, but not a busy spot. In the living room, the kitchen, or somewhere where your cat can overlook the room. But not a place where a lot of people walk by a lot (the hallway, near the front door). And donБt place boxes near food. Not enough boxes The rule goes: The amount of cats, is the number of boxes + 1. So if you have 1 cat 2 boxes. 2 cats 3 boxes. 3 cat 2 boxes, etc. This causes less tension between cats during their litter box usage and creates more freedom and space during their visits. Because it is possible that one cat doesnБt want to use one box, because the other cat has used it. And some cats like to pee one box and poop in the other. Spread the boxes through the house and donБt place them next to each other. Maybe you have one toilet upstairs and one downstairs, why shouldnБt your cat? Especially for older cats itБs a good choice to place a box downstairs and upstairs. DonБt change litter-brand out of the blue.
Big chance it will result in a cat peeing in front of the box. Mix a little bit of the new litter with the old litter, and every time you clean, you add a little bit more of the new litter, until thereБs only new litter left. ThereБs also the possibility that your cat just doesnБt like the litter, even though you followed the instructions above very slowly. It could be quite the change if theyБre used to soft silicon litter and suddenly have to stand on hard wooden grains. Does your cat always pee in cardboard boxes, on towels in the living room or on your clothes that you didnБt pick up? Then pick up your clothes, donБt place towels on the floor in the bathroom and donБt leave boxes laying around. You also have to clean the places your cat has peed on thoroughly. DonБt use any bleach, because that smell will only invite cats to pee on it. First, you make sure the place is dry before you start cleaning. Then you clean it with soda or something else that breaks off the enzymes in the urine. Afterwards you rinse it and dry it and make it extra clean with an alcohol solution. Make sure itБs dry before you let your cat walk around again, so it doesnБt end up on his paws. So always make sure you ruled out a medical condition and go through these tips. But remember that a cat behaviorist can always help you much further and see things you might not see.
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