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Pee problem--need advice

post #1 of 20
Thread Starter 
I have read everything on the cat pee problem. I adopted Blackie after I lost my beloved Bear last fall. All seemed well until after I noticed that Blackie was peeing outside of the box. He was peeing in the general vicinity but not actually in the box itself. I attributed it to the box being in a closed in corner and it was covered. So we threw out that box, purchased a new one that was not covered and moved it to a more open area but still private behind the bar We put Cat Attract litter in it and things seemed to be ok. We went back to the Tidy Cat litter and all seemed well. Well then we noticed that he is still peeing in an area around 5-10 feet away from the box. He does share the box w/one other small cat who he gets along with. We currently have him confined in a large dog cage with another box with the Cat Attract litter in it so we can complete a cleanup of the room. It was either that or my husband was going to make me take him back to the rescue that I got him from. The rescue organization had him in a private home for 4 mos with no problems. I intend on leaving the second box set up for him but Im wondering how long I should confine him. We can't leave him to keep peeing down there and I don't want to get rid of him because he's a wonderful companion. He's not having accidents anywhere else--we have a 3 floor home and the cats spend most of their time downstairs anyway--where the boxes are. Why would he be going in just the vicinity with no accidents anywhere else? Please advise...

post #2 of 20
How long have you had him for and what time span have you made all these changes to the litter box, litter type, etc? Your little one could be very confused by all of these changes. Cats need things kept as consistent as possible, they are not big fans of change. Also, have you used a spot & oder remover on the areas that he has peed on? If not, then he will continue to pee and poop there, as he has marked his scent and will return back to it.
Some multiple cat homes require more than one litter box, so I would suggest getting another one - and try to have the same litter box type and same litter in each. There are also several threads on this site about litter box problems, so I would do a serch on this, or also look at the main threads at the top of the Behavior forum/page.
Please, please, please explain to your husband that kittens are like kids, they learn as they go and therefore need time, love and patience... Getting rid of the cat/carting it back and forth from shelters and homes will only confuse the little one and cause more problems for him Please have your husband be patient, and let him know that with time you will be able to resolve this matter and have a wonderful companion who needs your love and affection.
post #3 of 20
Thread Starter 
I uncovered and moved the box out of the corner when I discovered he wasn't using it to pee in about 3 months ago. I used the Cat Attract which is supposed to be used temporarily to bring the cat back to the box. Then you mix in the regular litter (which was the same litter used by the resuce) then eventually return to the regular litter. We only moved the box about 1 foot away from where it was stuck in the corner. Everything seemed ok until we discovered multiple areas that were urinated on and obvious continually urinated on. We are conducting a mass clean up and I've decided he will remain confined until this is complete. We have gone thru GALLONS of natures miracle ---so we are retreating everything, letting it dry then will hit it w/repellant spray to keep him from those areas. In the meantime, Im hoping he will acquaint himself w/the box that is currently in the cage with him. Ill leave that box when he's done doing time....
post #4 of 20
Has he had a vet check? My cat was peeing near the box, and it turned out that she had cystitis (inflammation of the bladder). She looked fine otherwise, but she actually had blood in her urine. She only peed outside the box on occasion, so it took a while before I realized there was really a problem.

How old and how large is Blackie? Some older or larger cats have trouble using a normal sized litterbox. You might try one of those long under-the-bed plastic containers, since they have shorter sides and give the cat more room to turn around and dig.
post #5 of 20
Please get him to a vet and rule out a health issue first before doing anything else.
post #6 of 20
Thread Starter 
I cleaned his box this evening and he is using it consistantly while confined. I had a cat with cystitis and that cat went everywhere. We have a 3 story house and he mostly slept on the top floor and he had ZERO accidents on the other floors of the house. I really think he became turned off of the covered box under the bar when he first arrived and had several accidents before we realized it. We did some cleaning but not a thorough one and I don't think all the odors were removed. My husband was having major health issues at the time and we didn't have the time or resources to do a thorough cleaning. All stains are now removed with enzyme cleaner and double checked with a black light.

Blackie is also not consuming an inordinate amount of water nor is he peeing more than normal so I really think this is behaviour related. I will have him vet checked prior to his release. He is EXTREMELY SENSITIVE and doesn't like to be picked up and I fear that an unnecessary vet trip will do more harm than good. I can usually pick him up for a short period of time but even in our own home he will bite and scratch if held too long. He'll curl up w/you or jump in your lap but on his own terms. If he was in obvious distress and peeing constantly and drinking tons of water it would be a no brainer. I have been working with the foster mom from his rescue group as well as the rescue coordinator and they both agree that this is behaviour related.

I just wanted to check w/this site to see if anyone else has had behaviour related litter box issues not related to cystitis/uti and how they were able to resolve them.

We plan on keeping him confined for a few weeks and we will treat the areas that he soiled w/Feliway. This will give all the treated areas a chance to dry and remain unsoiled and will retrain him back to his own box--so please let me know if anyone has had similar issues and what the results were..
He is about 10 lbs and about 1 year old--domestic long hair.
post #7 of 20
If you are treating his pee spots with feliway spray you are wasting a ton of money. You need a blacklight, and enzyme cleaner in order to get all the spots and in order to get all the urine taken care of or carries the best cleaners imo that you will need-

You can buy a black light here if you can't find one locally.

Again a health issue is the number one reason why cats have accidents. He could have a low lying kidney infection- that should be ruled out first before looking at the litter pans (he should have two) or the environment or any other type of issue.
post #8 of 20
Follow Hissy's advice and get Kitty to the vet first and foremost.

Once you rule out medical problems, attack the behavior. But you cannot do that until you totally illiminate the smell. And good luck, because if it saturated the carpet or floor it is DIFFICULT to get rid of completely.

I'd go with the products Hissy recommended. I had ZERO success with Nature's Miracle or Simple Solution Odor Remover.

Do what you can to get rid of the smell, even if that includes ripping up the carpet.

Anywhere he peed, once you got the smell out, cover the area with those clear plastic carpet runners. You can put the nubby side up to be a real deterant. Spray Feliway around the area according to instruction (one or two sprays twice a day). Make sure you have enough litter boxes (two cats, at least two boxes - preferably three) and they are immaculately clean (scoop them twice a day).

We had the same problem with our guy Comere (who has since passed away) a while back, and doing the above stuff solved the problem. But I will tell you, the only way we got rid of the smell was to get rid of the carpet he had repeatedly peed on... and then to treat the floor underneith in drastic ways that took days. If there is even the hint of the odor left, the cat will be prone to continue urinating there.

Good luck! Keep us posted.
post #9 of 20
Thread Starter 
We have been cleaning w/enzyme cleaners and doing the CSI thing w/the black light. I know my threads have been rather lengthy but I do believe I've mentioned this. This has proved that all the spots are indeed clean. If I have to rip up the bloody carpets, my husband is sure to disown me!

Yes--I will be taking him to the vet to rule out any urinary disorder but Im still leaning towards a behaviour issue. He will remain confined for the month for behaviour modification and/or medical care if the vet trip proves that he is indeed ill.

In the meantime, he's handling the confinement remarkably well. I visit w/him quite often as does the other cat.

After I take him to the vet, Ill report the findings. In the meantime, continued advice as to the behaviour modification portion of the problem would be appreciated.
post #10 of 20
Thread Starter 
Vet check is scheduled for Thursday at 3:15pm--will report back their findings. In the meantime, he is relaxing in his den. Also additional advice regarding behaviour modification is still appreciated.

Thank you
post #11 of 20
Misclaims - I'm sorry if my reply offended you somehow - I did read your message about using enzyme cleaner and the reason I encouraged you to try the stuff Hissy recommended is because i had no luck what-so-ever with Natures Miracle (which you indicated you used a lot of).

I hope my other BEHAVIOR advice was helpful. It did make all the difference for us when we had the problem with our old guy, and after doing what I said he never peed on the floor again.

I know the thought of ripping up your carpets is no fun, and I will spare you the details why we ended up having to rip up ours - and hopefully your situation isn't as bad - but let me just say we tried every way possible to get rid of the smell and even when WE thought it was gone, it wasn't. Kitty could still smell it.

If it's possible, you might want to pull up the carpet temporarily to get to the floor underneith and treat the padding and the floor with a good odor illiminator, or at least make sure it didn't soak down into the padding and floor. It really depends on how often your kitty peed in the same spots and how much.

Good luck! I hope the advice you've read here has been helpful. I DO know how frustrating it is, and I KNOW you want an easy answer. If it's purely behavioral you can fix it and make for a happy kitty and kitty-mom
post #12 of 20
Thread Starter 
No offense taken...Im just speaking out of frustration...we had recently recarpeted the basement due to a flood not so long ago so the thought of having to redo them is unthinkable...

We are treating the areas multiple times and with having Blackie confined during this time, we are hoping that these multiple treatments will put all the smells out. This will give the areas time to be thoroughly cleaned without the chance of being restained.

Before his release, we will also treat those areas w/Feliway--so we are hoping that a multiple approach will eliminate the problem--with his confinement to be retrained to the box, the vet check and the treatment of the stained areas. I can't imagine what else we should do.

We have a heavy duty steam cleaner machine and that is what we are using to clean the areas after letting the enzyme cleaner sit on it overnight. Then the area is being dried with a fan.

Again--not sure what else we should do....

post #13 of 20

Just don't forget to use the plasic runners over the areas he's gone. It doesn't have to be permanent, just for a few months while you break him of the habit and reinforce that he should go in those spots (where he's already gone). You can buy a roll of it and cut it into large pieces to cover just the spots where he's gone. They look like this and you can usually get them at Home Depot, a carpet store or a hardware store. You can put them nubby side up because he won't like the way it feels on his paws to walk on it. I didn't have to put it nubby side up because I knew my guy wouldn't pee on the plastic - you could try it either way.

And use the Feliway sparingly. It's not an odor illimator - it's a calming smell to kitty. You only need 1 or two squirts around the area where he went. So if you put the plastic runners down, spray 1 or 2 squirts next to it, twice a day.

I hope you have better luck than we did steam-cleaning! For us the steam cleaning made it worse!

Hang in there! I know it's frustrating... and I also know what it's like to have a spouse who is less than understanding about the smell...
post #14 of 20
Thread Starter 
Went to the vet today. There was trace blood and protein in his urine. The vet couldn't say for sure that the blood wasn't from doing the bladder tap but said there was a little more than usual. No white blood cells or crystals were found.

He put him on Clavamox and I got it in him by rolling it up in some wet cat food.

He agrees with keeping him confined for the next week then slowly start to let him out. He's handling the confinement rather well and walked right back into the cage after I let him out of the carrier.

We are renting an super steam cleaner this weekend and will retreat the areas that were soiled then treat them w/Feliway.

Wish us luck!

post #15 of 20
I'm so glad your cat is on meds. I'll bet that this will make a huge difference in his behavior. Please do remember that Feliway does not remove odors. Feliway will not make the rug smell any less like pee, so your cat might keep on using it instead of the box (even after becoming helathy) because it still smells like pee.

Please use something other than Feliway to clean the rug. I have found that Knok-Out is the best odor remover.

Feliway does a great job of calming anxious cats and curbing marking behavior, but it does not remove odors. (Also, it will leave a sticky residue on your rug which will attract dirt.)
post #16 of 20
Thread Starter 
We have tackled the stained areas with Natures Miracle and just rented a HUGE rug doctor to retreat the stains. We have no intentions on putting down Feliway until these areas are completely treated. We have treated them repeatedly with enzyme cleaners---see previous posts in this thread..

post #17 of 20
Thread Starter 

One week later and Im happy to say all spots have been cleaned w/enzyme cleaner and dried. Then we recleaned the areas w/a RUG Doctor filled w/Oxyclean.

There is absolutely no smell whatsoever! Blackie is still confined and is doing ok--he has about 7 days left on the medicine. He is using his box all the time while confined. I will leave it there once he is released from the cage. I spend quite a bit of time talking to him and petting him while he is confined.

We are going to be doing trial releases next week. Prior to that we will treat the affected areas w/Feliway to hopefully replace what was once a bad smell with a nice new one.

So I will report back next week--hopefully this will do the trick....
Wish us luck!
post #18 of 20
Thread Starter 
we finished the clavamox Sunday. We started letting him out to roam a bit Friday night. Today he had the whole run of the house with no accidents. I did pen him back up tonight until we are sure he's over his issues.

We sprayed the areas we had previously cleaned with enzyme cleaner w/Feliway so Im hoping this works!

So far so good! After two weeks of confinement & medication, and some SERIOUS industrial cleaning--Im hoping this is the end of pee issue!

post #19 of 20
what type of cleaner did you use??????????? I have tried the nature's miracle about 3 times already on the same areas with no success!!!!!! The room still smells aweful!!!!!!!!!!!! And my Roxxie is still peeing outside the box. I'm taking her to the vet AGAIN tomorrow to see what's going on. She was there and he said she had a behavioral problem and gave her "kittie prozac" which she refuses to take and vomits it up. I don't know what else to try.
post #20 of 20
try the stuff hissy recommends.. I found that the stuff walmart sells works as well if not better than the miricle
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