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T or F: cats who don't cover their business in the litterbox are dominant cats.

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I've heard this theory, but I don't know what to make of it. I have 2 cats who dig deep holes and then cover thoroughly (one even seems to smooth it over so that you can't tell she was in there!). One of them is the baby of the family and has the lowest "status" and the other one tends to be very prissy and timid.

My other 2 just plop and go. One of them is the oldest and definitely the most dominant. She's the queen bee. The other non-coverer is more submissive, but she's somewhere in the middle of the hierarchy.

I'm just curious if any of you have noticed patterns like this in your cats and their litterbox habits or if it's just totally random.
post #2 of 14
I'd say its random, one of my cats is very dominant and he covers everything. All of my cats do they cover it up good. I've never seen a pattern in any of the cats i've had hey just all cover it.
post #3 of 14
I honestly never paid attention to the 2 - I've had cats that would cover and some that didn't. I think Lily (my rex queen) which was a very dominate cat! - she covered her poop.

And Charlie is a dominate cat - he digs to China

I think its random.
post #4 of 14
hard to say exactly since now I have multiple cats, four of whom share litterboxes at any given time. The three kittens alwasy share boxes and I know one little girl who doesn't bother to cover but the other two do what they feel at the time.
I have a great big queen who mostly stays apart from the others, I do not know if she is dominant per se, she can handle encounters with the others without losing her composure at all, normally gives no reaction to hissing or evn a swipe, just a very cool look and continues with her business. She tends to be a sprayer though and gets especially determined to mark things after seeing other cats.
She is a nice lady in the box-covering up her business. You can still see the deposit, but it is always lightly covered.
My other queen, who is a bit spastic and hates all the other cats except for her pal Ow, shares a box with him sometimes. She planned on being dominant i think and was reported as dominant coming from her last home/breeder. Ow toppled her. She sometimes covers her stuff and sometimes not. She is messy and will also poop and pee in random places.
Ow, my big dominant neuter, is very clean cat. he digs deep, covers deep. he will even examine the boxes and cover the other cats' business if he feels it is offensive. Should he discover a spot where his buddy queen has had an 'accident', he will attempt to cover that too.
post #5 of 14
I've never experienced anything like that. I wouldn't say it has anything to do with dominance. All my time my cats have all covered theirs. The only exception being kittens who have been taken from their mums too early, but they are easily taught, how to cover.

A stray/feral that I rescued yesterday is going to need training, he hopped in the box, had a pee, sniffed it, went to cover it but just jumped out. Pee isn't something to worry about, but I imagine when it comes time to poop, he will do the same thing.
post #6 of 14
I read somewhere that feral cats, if the dominant one in the area, will actually make a point of relieving themselves at the the top of a hill or something and then purposely not cover it, so the scent carries further. How true this is, I don't know...

I have two kittens, and it does seem that one of them covers and one doesn't. But that might just be due to the fact that one of my kittens seems to miss. He'll do his business in the litterbox and then step out of it, then make the raking motion to cover it up, so all he ends up doing is raking the floor.
post #7 of 14
That's an interesting question. Too bad I'm a newbie owner and don't really know all the signals of my cat yet. But I do know that sometimes Libby covers her stuff, and then sometimes she doesn't.

I think she doesn't cover her stuff well when she's pooped a couple of times. We only see her do it once, but she sneaks in other times and when I go to clean the box at night I see all kinds of things in there.
post #8 of 14

Chynna is the dominant cat in my home. Chynna would dig to China if the litter box didn't have a hard plastic bottom and the floor below it. She digs and digs before she goes, and then she spends 5 minutes digging to cover it up. By the time she's finished there is a mountain of litter which used to be all over the floor before I got one of those boxes that has edges that fold inward.

Abby is exactly opposite. She hates getting her paws dirty and she gets in and quickly places 3 paws on the corner/side of the box with one paw in the box. Does her thing and leaps out. Doesn't dig before and doesn't cover it after. The closest she comes to covering it is jumping into the bathtub and scratching at the side, LOL

Kitties just have different potty habits, like us humans. Some of us flush before getting off the pot, while others flush afterward. Some flush with the lid up and others put the lid down.
post #9 of 14
I heard that when cats don't cover their business in the liter box it means they are being arrogant.

I have 6 cats and their mother doesn't always cover her poop. She's bossy but her son, Buddie, is the dominant one and he will sometimes cover up her poop when she dosen't. All my cats were former ferals.
post #10 of 14
Mischief almost never covers anything. She's a very shy and timid cat ... very jumpy. If you disturb her in there, she'll just 'drop and run'. Surprisingly, she is the dominant cat of the two but usually, Frosty will go in later and cover everything. When you hear 10 minutes worth of digging, you know it's Frosty in there and if the whole house is polluted, you know it was Mischief!
post #11 of 14
Speaking of dominance, does the dominant cat always eat first? Seems to be the other way around with the two of mine, Demetrius seems to "let" Chiron have the first go. Either that, or I'm misevaluating the winner of their daily brawls.
post #12 of 14
My Mr. Thomas Kittens has NEVER covered his own stuff. It used to drive me crazy....I even tried showing him how in the beginning like books told me to. Needless to say, it stinks around here sometimes. If Lily happens to come by after he goes, she'll take care of it, but that doesn't always happen. Maybe the more dominant or arrogant cat is trying to get the others ones to cover it, thus showing their submission? But yes, Thomas was here first, and has an air of dominance. He even tries to force us to pet him...crazy cat.

One more thing, Thomas scratches EVERYWHERE around the outside of the box for 5-10 min, but still refuses to cover. The scratching thing is a sign of dominance, I mean, he IS marking all over the freakin box. That's what clued us in on his issue. Have you seen (or heard) your cat doing anything like this?
post #13 of 14
All my 5 cats cover up their business including the dominant Veeshan.
post #14 of 14
Chessy doesn't cover in the litter box, and he waits until the others have eaten to eat, so...
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