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My cat is licking the litter and..........

post #1 of 7
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Hi I posted on the Health board about my Cat Cleo who was not using the litter box at all and had very bad stools. I have taken her to the Vet twice and the new antibiotic(something that starts with an M), seems to be helping. Cleo actually peeed in the litter box today and her loose stools are drier and less numerous. She still won't poo in the box though . I have noticed since she has been sick she has been licking the stairs of the litter box( I have what we call a Boda box(spelling?) it is round and covered with stairs), the stairs always have some litter on it. The litter is the scoopable kind. Any idea why she is doing this. When I told the Vet. she just laughed and blew it off. I would appreciate any help. Thank s
post #2 of 7
I would toss out your boda box and buy another litter pan and see if that works. I would also not use scoopable litter until she stops her new habit. Go to the recyclable type just to be safe. I would also mix her food with either some homemade chicken broth (storebought is to salty) or something equally as tempting to push fluids. Introduce some canned pumpkin as well to get some fiber going in her diet
post #3 of 7
Don't quote me on this, I'm not 100% sure, but I think I remember reading either in a book or on this site that it could be a sign of anemia or a vitamin deficiency. I used to have a cat that licked litter too, and my vet also dismissed it but i found out it could have been a medical reason and I got very upset with this vet.

I hope someone will see this post and correct me if I'm wrong, I don't want to give you incorrect info.

Jill and Candy
post #4 of 7
catlover68 -

Just read your other post and saw that Cleo has anemia, so that must be what I read somewhere before. I don't know what to tell you except wait for the results that your vet is expecting, and hopefully she can give Cleo something for it.

Wishing you and Cleo the best of luck,

Jill and Candy
post #5 of 7
Other than medical causes, which should of course be corrected, you do want safe litter. I use World's Best - features at http://www.worldsbestcatlitter.com/features.htm - because it's pretty much harmless. It's made from whole kernel human-grade corn. They can ingest it with no problems (and our two kitties ate quite a bit at first when we switched to it). They can breathe in the (slight) dust with no problems--so can you. Clay litters all contain silica dust. In addition, clumping clay can block intestines. These problems seem quite rare, but there is a bit of evidence that such things are harmful--actually kittens (very small ones) have died from licking clumping clay litter.

Other pluses is that it clumps (and clumps together, not against the side or bottom of the litterbox), controls odor very well, and it's better for the environment (no stripmining, and it's biodegradable unlike clay).

Other safe litters include things like Swheat Scoop (although this doesn't clump very well, I heard), Ecofresh and other recycled paper types (most don't clump, I think), and Feline Pine (nonclumping, some people think the treatment still leaves some irritant in the pine, but this may be paranoia).
post #6 of 7
Jill & Candy, I think you read that from a post by me over in the health forum.

Our vet laughed it off when we said our Tuxedo was licking/eating litter as well. The feline internist specialist, however, informed us that in most instances, licking litter is a sign of anemia. Catlover68, I'm so glad you already discovered this, because it can be so serious!

I'm sure that once you have all of Cleo's medical problems resolved, she'll be using the litterbox again. Also, Hissy's advice to toss the Boda Box is good advice, though not necessarily what you want to hear. Our Tuxedo kitty was very, very anemic, and he didn't even like moving. Climbing stairs for a sick kitty can be really difficult, especially if they're tired or in pain or discomfort of any kind. The best way to ensure that Cleo uses the box is to get a box that's really easy for her to access.

Also, you have to make sure that you clean up the pee or poop with an enzyme cleaner. The Pet Stores around here carry Natures Miracle. Follow the instructions - it will completely remove the smell down to the floorboards, which is what you need. The scent (even if we can't detect it), if not completey removed, will continue to encourage her to pee or poop in the same place. The enzymatic cleaners address this problem - chemical cleaners do not.
post #7 of 7

I'm sure I did read about it being anemia from your post. This site really is so helpful!

Jill and Candy
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