Post # 1
We just bought our first house (yay!) and when we brought our two cats and dog in, they seemed to adjust well…..Until we realised only one cat (8 mo. old male) was using the litterbox (they have shared a litterbox since we got the male cat in October with no issue). Our 4 year old female cat is pooping on the carpet and peeing in the batheroom sink (which is kind of clever, but still gross!).
We have tried the litterbox in several locations, we have reprimanded, we have moved her poop from the carpet into the box so she makes the association…nada.
This cat has moved house with us 4 times (including crsoss country) and she has never done this. She has never had litterbox issues before unless she is mad (and has pooped on our bed). But it has been two weeks and she seems really happy in the new house (much bigger, lots of windows for her to sit).
We are at our wits end. To make matters worse we are replacing the carpet in the whole hosue this weekend (old carpet is cheap and ugly). If she poops on our new, $4,500 carpet my husband will lose it.
We did buy a new litterbox when we moved which I thought was the problem, but its been two weeks with the other cat using it and still no dice.
Any and all suggestions welcome!!! HELP!
Post # 2
A lot of cats really want their own personal litterbox. I couldn’t tell from your post whether you have one or two boxes, but try adding a second box in a different location and see if that makes a difference.
Post # 3
KatieBklyn: I might try that. Currently we only have one, but they have been sharing it with no issue for the past 7 months. Only seems to be since we moved that she has been deciding not to use it. She tends to shun new litter boxes a little, so I am nervous a new one just for her would still be an issue!
Post # 4
Sorry to say, but the issue might actually be the carpet itself. When cats poo outside the box, it’s either because they don’t like the box (not enough boxes, sharing a box, wrong type of litter, wrong location) or because they like the texture of the carpet etc better.
Have you considered not putting down a new carpet for a few weeks and bleaching the floor to discourage her from going outside the box?
Post # 5
Call your vet and mention what is going on and ask if they have any tips. They may ask you to bring the cat in if there isn’t any change in behaviour. I say this because it might be stress of moving and a new place or that they don’t like the carpet or the carpet may have other pet smells in it from previous owners.
But it also could be that kitty has something wrong and may be associating the litterbox with pain if it has crystals in it’s urine or a uti or something.
Post # 6
Rachel631: I talked to my husband and he is removing the old carpet now and bleaching the subfloor (recommended by carpet guy also)! New carpet isn’t in til Monday, so we are hoping a weekend with hard/bleached floor will encourage box usage! And the type of box/sharing/type of litter hasn’t changed – just placement. And we’ve tried almost every room in the house!
jlc3: If the bleaching/ new carpet doesn’t fix it, I am calling the vet next week! I know the pervious owners had a dog that had pee pads and I think she is smelling that? Just weird that the other cat and especially our dog aren’t marking at all.
Anyone ever heard of a cat marking it’s new space just because it’s “claiming” it? Or has anyone ever bought one of those pheromone diffusers that you plug in? It’s supposed to help calm and adjust cats with moves.
Post # 8
Stiz: I have moved to 4 apartments in less than 4 years with my 4 year old cat. She has been uses the floor sometimes at the past 2. She only does it now when we are out of town. I’ve kind of decided she is doing it because she’s sad/lonely or mad at me – maybe both!!! She needs a lot of attention and is all over both of us when we first get home or when we’re about to leave. But she’s done better recently. I know it’s frustrating! And DH has been threatening to get rid of her if she gets any worse about it. I don’t really have much advice because we are struggling with this also! But just wanted you to know you are not alone!
Post # 9
When we are attempting to introduce a cat to a new situation we always enclose them in the room with their litter pan for as long as it takes them to prove that they will use the pan reliably in the new situation.
SO- we feed them in the room where the litter pan is, we go in and play with them there, they sleep there, and so on.
It usually doesn’t take more than a day or two for them to get the idea.
Also, whether your kitties shared before or not, I think you should try a two pan set up and see how that works.
Post # 10
Stiz: I think the next step is more boxes. You should have 1 per cat plus one extra anyway, because some cats don’t like to poo and pee in the same place.
You could also try “Cat Attract” litter…