My cat has stopped using his litter box.

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  1. Please, somebody give me some advice. He's certainly not ill, he's just obstinate. We have two litter boxes in different locations (two cats), we clean it out every day, same litter as before. He pees in the box, but has started pooing on the rug in the den or elsewhere in the condo. He doesn't appear to see the problem with this. I put the stuff in the litter box to coax him but it doesn't seem to work. He has been to the vet and is physically healthy. He is also very needy, but very happy and spoiled. My husband thinks he looked out the window and saw a dog doing the deed on the street, and thought, "And here I've been, using the litterbox like a sucker".
    But in all seriousness...anyone else been through this? What could be the problem?
  2. have him euthanized at once. j/k.
    sounds like territorial marking to me. cats of all species mark their territories this way, especially males. in the wild, big cats will poop the biggest pile they possibly can in the most prominent area where everyone can see. let me look something up to see how to break him of this cause I've never had this problem.
    I did have one male cat though that was very possessive of me and when DH and I got together, he would pee in his luggage.
  3. I agree with bags ^, I think it could be a territorial thing. I would add another litterbox to see if that helps. Rule of Thumb about # of Litterboxes: # of Cats + one.
    Also some other things to consider. Did you change the litter itself? I have one cat that poos outside the litterbox when she is taunted and bothered by the other 4 cats... Also, some cats pee and poo in different litterboxes.
  4. Has anything changed recently in your household such as moving furniture, a new person, a new cat in the neighborhood?
  5. here is some advice from a cat behavior website:
    To repel kitty from previously soiled areas, cover them with solid air fresheners (preferably a citrus scent) or a mini-motion detector (available from Radio Shack--Cat.No.49-425). When the carpet is dry, a vinyl carpet runner (spike side up!) can be placed over the problem areas. Cats are very location-oriented so deterrents should be left in place for at least six weeks after kitty has been using the litterbox regularly to make sure that old habits have been broken.

    and heres a phone number:
    If you would like help determining the cause or treatment for an inappropriate elimination problem, call Cats International at 262-375-8852.
  6. Hmm..I wonder if it is territorial. They are both indoor cats and the other one beats him up all the time. He (the Pixie-Bob in question) is also very possessive of me and has always been trying to muscle out DH (exerts dominance over his office chair, his spot on the couch, and his spot on the bed- I kid you not, it's hilarious). Nothing has changed but he goes through phases of this. He is neutered, other cat is a male (neut.) also and they've been together for 3 years now.
    We change the litterbox outright once every 10 days or so. We just cleaned it all out yesterday and yet whoomp, there it is.
    Good advice so far though- I knew I could count on my PFers!
  7. OMG! This is so helpful, thank you SO much! I have scoured the internet and not found anything this useful...
  8. How old is your cat? My cat stopped using her litter box as she got older, and I put up with it until the end. She just didn't understand to go in it anymore. I tried and tired to get her back in, but nothing worked. For cleaning purposes, I had to limit the rooms she was allowed to enter, unfortunately. If the room had a rug, it was off limits to her.
  9. It definitely sounds territorial to me then. Even if your cats are neutered that doesn't take away all their male "urges". Sounds like he is intimidated by the other cat and by your DH (hey testosterone is testosterone and animals sense it in people). A good thing for DH to do for starters is to make friends with the cat/s. He should take some time to be friendly to them and pet them as often as he can and even offer them treats. Cats may be aloof but they are social creatures contrary to popular belief. Maybe not to the extent of being pack animals but they do like company and we have to adjust to them sometimes. (hell, who am I kidding, my dog and cat run the place!)
  10. Please don't have him euthanized as someone suggested!
    If he's pooing in the same spot regularly then the best thing to do is put a small bowl of cat food right next to it. Cat's normally will not do their business in the same vicinity as their food.
    I had a cat that hated sharing a litter box and he refused to use those boxes with the hood/cat privacy tent or whatever they call them.
  11. ^^I think bagnshoo was just kidding...:smile:
  12. He's only 5 and a half...not time for the big litterbox in th sky yet:lol:
    DH is on great terms with him, he is always petting/feeding/scratching the cats. But the other one seems to attach itself more to DH while this little guy is sort of more "mine" (I brought him with me when we bought the place and moved in four years ago). Apparently Pixie-Bobs bond very strongly to their owners but I didn't realize this would be a tradeoff.
    He seems to go through phases of this too. He'll use the litterbox for a month and then suddenly start this action. I wonder if he's getting beat up more during the day when we're not around.
    Good call on the I have to go shopping for all kinds of kitty deterrents! LOL @ the cat peeing in the luggage, I'm sorry to laugh at that but it is pretty funny...
  13. Maybe your vet could offer a suggestion for his change in behavior? Cats are so hard to figure out sometimes, but oh, how we love them anyway!!!

    A long time ago I had a cat with a similar problem. I took her to a behavior specialist for cats and she thought the problem might have something to do with not having enough "ash" (I can't remember now what that is) in her diet. She also thought that maybe my cat had decided to resent me not being home during the day.

    Sadly, I never could find a solution, but it was okay in the end. I loved her so much I just put up with her problem.

    Good luck to you and your kitty!
  14. Sometimes I think those behaviour specialists will say anything. Not at home during the day? That's why your cat is not using the litter box! Oh please. I was home during the day or my kids were home and my cat just stopped using the box. We also put up with it... I wouldn't have been able to live with myself if I put my cat down because she didn't fit with my lifestyle.
  15. Aluminum foil works really well as a deterrent too:yes:

    We had this problem with our Persian. He was litter trained & neutered from a small kitten & we never had a problem until he was about 10 years old. At that time, we moved into a new house & soon after, I had my 2nd baby. Also about this time, he started getting sick. He would pee & poop all over the house, anywhere but his litter box. He would continually go to certain spots, including all the leather furniture in our basement & my kids bean bag chairs in the playroom. Just random! I took him to the vet. We never figured out if it was because of the new house, new baby or he didn't feel well. It got so bad, I had to put up baby gates to confine him to certain areas of the house. He literally ruined $10,000 worth of furniture. The areas I could clean up, I put foil down. He would walk over to it but as soon as his foot touched it, he would jump off. I too loved him & just dealt with it for 2 years. Last year we had him put down because of further health issues.

    Good luck, I hope things get better for you!