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Cat problems

Captain CthulhuCaptain Cthulhu Registered User regular
edited June 2007 in Help / Advice Forum
So I've got this cat. His name is Chester Copperpot and honestly I love him to death, but lately he's just been too much for me. When I first got him a while ago, he was perfect. He was quiet, loving, friendly, clean and everything else you'd want a good cat to be.

Well about a month ago I moved out to Seattle and into a new place. Sure at first he was a little nervous, as was expected but then he just never went back to normal. Now, he either just hides away by himself, or wanders around the house making constant unstoppable noise that annoys both me and my new roommates alike.

But today he stepped it up a notch and peed on a bunch of my clothes and on my bed, which is why I'm not currently sleeping in it. I just don't know what to do at this point. Honestly if I was living alone still I would have no problem trying to work it out and whatever, but my roommates don't have any other pets and I feel like I'm really being shitty if he acts like an asshole. I don't know what to do here and even though it makes me want to cry, giving him away seems like a viable option.

Any suggestions?

Captain Cthulhu on

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    DisenchanterDisenchanter Magnolia, DERegistered User regular
    edited June 2007
    I am having the same issue with my cat, except I also have cat crap with the urine all over my couch (which is a problem with a pregnant fiance). I called up the place I got the cat, and they informed me that he is "hitting his terrible 2's", and now marking HIS stuff has become important in his mind. I was informed that it is a form of compliment as he considers you HIS human, and is doing you a favor by giving you his scent. Unfortunately, I have been informed by various trainers and such that it is a phase and he just has to grow out of it. Not good enough, I have a 14 month old son and my fiance is pregnant so the sanitary issues are beyond what I can tolerate, so if anyone in the NJ, DE, PA area wants a cute cat PM me.

    Disenchanter on
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    Captain CthulhuCaptain Cthulhu Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Chester is 7 years old...

    Captain Cthulhu on
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    FellhandFellhand Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    You moved with him. He's in new territory and he's probably trying to mark it and stuff.
    Cats are weird like that.

    Fellhand on
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    SeruleSerule Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Is your cat fixed? They are worse if they are unfixed - males moreso.

    It is very possible that he is just scared of his new living situation. Marking stuff with his scent makes him feel more secure. Unfortunately for you, he may be urinating where he feels most comfortable - which might be where *your* scent is.

    They sell a pheremone thing that plugs into your wall socket (like an air freshener) that's supposed to make cats feel more at home, but they are somewhat pricey and I have not personally had any luck with them.

    Urinating outside the litter box can also be a sign of a bladder infection. Some cats get them more often as they get older.

    For cleaning, make sure you purchase an enzyme-based cleaner. They're like $8 for a 32 oz bottle. They are carried at any pet store and most grocery stores - it works much better than anything else. It's important to clean the area well, because not only does cat pee smell pretty bad it also encourages your cat to keep peeing there.

    Serule on
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    NexusSixNexusSix Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    First off, great name for a kitty. :^:

    Second, your next step, if you haven't already done this, is to schedule a trip to the vet. Since you've moved, I'd ask around or do a bit of Internet research in order to locate a good cat vet. The problem here is, since you've recently moved, that this could be general goofy-ass cat behavior, but urination problems could also be a symptom of a urinary tract infection.

    Walking around meowing is a fairly common cat behavior and I'm not sure what can be done to alleviate that problem. We have several cats, are one likes to meow loudly if he's going to get a drink of water, going to get a bite of food, going into the litterbox, coming out of the litterbox... that's just his thing.

    As far as taking care of the urine stains, this stuff is the shit: Nature's Miracle. It's non-toxic, does an incredible job of getting out cat urine stains, and safe to use on all water-safe surfaces.

    Finally--and I'm not saying it would come to this, but just in case, I'd like to share this info--if this ends up being a huge problem that you can't resolve and negatively impacts the living conditions in your house, please make sure you look into cat rescue programs rather than a shelter. My wife has done a lot of work with Siamese Rescue. If you click on "contact us" on the top right of their home page, you'll find their links section with some resources to get you started should you need to place the cat in a rescue organization. This is a much better alternative than a shelter because the folks who volunteer for and run these organizations dedicate themselves to making sure the cat finds a good temporary foster or permanent home.

    Best of luck to you and Chester.

    Edit:
    They sell a pheremone thing that plugs into your wall socket (like an air freshener) that's supposed to make cats feel more at home, but they are somewhat pricey and I have not personally had any luck with them.

    Yeah, I forgot about those--can't remember the name of the product though. We also didn't have much luck with them. It's supposed to calm cats down, but it didn't work for ours--they still fight with each other.

    NexusSix on
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    browneyedsquirrelbrowneyedsquirrel Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    My boyfriend had a problem with his cat peeing on things a bit ago and they were at the end of their rope with her.

    They bought the pheremone wall plug in and it does seem to help. The only time she seems to have a relapse is if they forget to refill it. Also some other suggestions we saw were to up the number/location of catboxes though I don't think that's the problem since you only have one cat.

    Does he come out and up to you at any time? When my kitty got to her new place it took a long while for her to come out. She would hide under the bed all day and then wander out at night when it was completely dark and silent and mew a lot. I spent a couple nights up with her just petting her when she would come close to me for as long as I possibly could. She still skitters away if there is more than one person in a room but she is getting a lot better over the last month. Hopefully your kitty will too.

    Best of luck.

    browneyedsquirrel on
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    oncelingonceling Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Here are things you can do about the litter problem:

    1. If he's not fixed, do it. I can't tell you how much it changes behaviour for the better. It's something I would recommend even if you weren't having issues.

    2. You do need to rule out medical issues (UTI, as someone else posted).

    After that:

    3. Don't punish the cat for the behaviour.

    4. Make sure the box is very clean, if its old and funky, replace it, they are pretty cheap these days. Don't use strong-smelling cleaners on the box.

    5. You can consider getting a few cardboard box lids and trying a few different kinds of litter. If you changed the litter brand while you moved, that might not go down well. Or, even if you didn't, you might find one he's excited about peeing in again :P

    6. Use the Nature's Miracle, because your bed and pile of clothes are gonna smell like great places to go again, and it might not just be pee this time.

    7. I assume your cat is indoors only, if you find that he likes looking out the windows at other cats/animals outside this can sometimes cause these issues. Close the blinds or discourage other cats from wandering around near your windows.

    7. Psychological issues - try to provide your cat with some space for his own, and yes, those plugins (Feliway) can help.

    8. If you are desperate, and have the space to do it, you could consider re-training the cat in a small, easy to clean area like a bathroom or laundry. You put their litter box in there (which should be it's permanent spot) - the food separately as far away as you can, and confine the cat in there. Make sure you go and play often. If the cat uses the box regularly for a few weeks, start to allow it back into other parts of the house one room at a time, making sure the box is still used.


    With regard to making constant noise, this has worked for my new kitten:

    1. She makes noise, I stamp my foot on the ground (she doesn't like that much). It shuts her up pretty quick now.

    2. An even better idea (esp. if you have downstairs neighbours) is to carry a can with a handful of pennies in it. When the cat makes noise, you shake the can (provided the cat hates the noise, most will).

    But also, be sure that you set aside time to be with your cat, sometimes we can get mixed up in our lives and forget the lonliness of being a cat at home all day with no company.

    onceling on
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    CreepyCreepy Tucson, AzRegistered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Is he the only pet? Is he an indoor only pet? If so, he might be going nuts. The most poorly behaved cats I have seen seem to fit that profile.

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    MuddBuddMuddBudd Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    When my Skooge was a kitten, she use to have trouble with peeing on things. The couch especially. It turned out to be a mild bladder infection and she got over it.

    Well... she did it once more, a few years later. When I accidentally locked her in my bedroom, she ended up peeing on my bed. With me in it. Not her fault. Since she couldn't get to the litterbox, I guess that was her revenge.

    I'm a heavy sleeper too so I woke up the next morning wondering... "Why are my feet wet?" and the cat at the door demanding to be let out.

    MuddBudd on
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    FristleFristle Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    We have been dealing with a pisser cat for several years now -- then one day he peed blood in the sink (hey, the sink was the least bad place he liked to do it). It turned out that he had crystals in his bladder, a condition known as Feline Lower Urinary Tract Disorder. It is more common in male cats, and can result in a life-threatening urethral blockage (which it did -- we had to give him expensive surgery). Now he requires a strict pharmaceutically prescribed diet with just the right pH.

    But, he still pisses on things, so the behavior hasn't really been fixed at all. Recently he has upgraded to diarhrea that he will deposit on the floor, anywhere he feels like it apparently. It has happened like a dozen times and my wife will never give him away so I am about ready to move out myself. We're getting the carpets professionally cleaned next week. We already have Feliway plug-ins and two litter boxes.

    Fristle on
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    MuddBuddMuddBudd Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    At that point, I'd say cordon off a room just for the cat and keep him in there. Put Plastic down on the floor.

    MuddBudd on
    There's no plan, there's no race to be run
    The harder the rain, honey, the sweeter the sun.
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    FristleFristle Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    Update: the cat had become infected by a bacteria that was in another pet's poo: http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dbmd/diseaseinfo/campylobacter_g.htm

    *Crossing my fingers that the behavior will not resurface.*

    Fristle on
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    SerphimeraSerphimera Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    How is he with your roomates? He might be feeling uncomfortable with new people around on top of new surroundings. It took years for my cat to be OK with my husband.

    If that's the case, try to get him used to their presence in a nonthreatening way. You could have them (and only them) feed him treats regularly.

    Serphimera on
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    drinkinstoutdrinkinstout Registered User regular
    edited June 2007
    anther reason I've seen cats pee on a person's belongings is because they are upset by you or are feeling neglected. when my sister moved with her cat, she stopped paying it a lot of attn and was rarely around - it started peeing on everything that was hers. I'd say in addition to the above things, give your cat more attention and see if it becomes happier.

    drinkinstout on
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