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Need Kitty advice

post #1 of 14
Thread Starter 
I am REALLY sorry for this gigantic post, but I have soooo many questions !!!

On Friday 23rd November, my beloved black and white male, Scuttles had to be put to sleep. The cause was never determined, but he was terrible anemic and slept loads, and lost weight in the last week of his life. I just was reading some of the Litter box problem links (which is one of my questions, and the reason why I registered ! )when one of them lead me to a FELV information. The symptoms seem like a pretty close match. My cat in October became ill, and the vet, inspite of tests, couldn't understand why. As my Godmothers cat was diagnosed with FELV a couple of months before Scutty became ill, and we did spend an awful lot of time, cuddling her cats and playing with them, and my mum having them on her until they drooled all over her clothing, Would you think that there is a possiblity that he could have had the virus ???? I specifically asked the vet for a test, but he said it isn't worth it, as there is no cure and he wasn't displaying any particular symptoms. At the time, Scuttles had about 4 of those listed ! And should we now insist Mozzie is tested for FELV ????

Now I'm really worried, I have a kitten whom I rescued in June, from being beaten on a car, by kids holding it's tail. From what we have seen, and all the research we've done, we are 99% sure he's a Bengal. He is less than a year, from the estimation age, and he's so energetic. Could he be infected too, if Scuttles was a carrier ??? I am so worried now. Should I insist and get Mozzie tested, regardless of what the vet says ? Please advise me, after losing Scuttles, I would go mad if I have to deal with this pain again, and so soon. Mozzie is a picture of health at the moment, but he has taken it into his manic brain to yowl ( he doesn't have a normal meow ) and yowl repeatedly for hours on end, whether we ignore him or give him any sort of attention. He does it at any hour he feels like, and I and my family are getting a little stressed with the sleep loss. Mozzie, meantime, thinks it is all rather good fun ! Advice needed !!!

Also, he will not stop using my bedroom as a toilet. In drawers, on the floor, in my guineapig cages, anywhere he feels. He used to do his 'stuff' in the other rooms in the household, but now the other family members all close the doors. My room is doorless and cannot have one added. I also can't use anything that will make any noise, loud bangs or ultrasonic, because of my guineapigs. We clean the room everywhere. My piggies are also kept spotless, and we have tried messing around with the textures on the surfaces. We've tried having a litterbox upstairs, but he just slept in it ! If he can't go into my room, because it is too messy or whatever, he just goes outside, in the hallway, as close to the room as he can aim to !!! My mother adores him, we all do, but this is driving her, and me nuts...I need help urgently !!! I don't think Mozzie is trying to put his scent on me as he rarely cuddles up to me and will run away and hide rather than let me near him. He is fine with everyone else though. Oh, and there is always somebody at home 24 hours, 7 days a week, but we can never catch him at it, so it can't be an attention thing...can it !?!

The other thing is his smell. He has such a strange body odour, it is very metallic and gets so strong when he is up and running around as if the devil were riding him...er...which is whenever he is not asleep !!! Has anyone else had similar experiences with a cat's body odour. My vet is baffled and we've had 4 different opinions, no one can find a link to this metallic smell.

Any advice on handling a Bengal as well ??? He is trained to sit, back up a full body length, side step left or right a full body length, walk forward, and a vague ( certainly used in conjunction with selective deafness ) halt. He also fetches and retreives on comand, and plays tug-of-war, usually as he is about to steal things to hide !!! He goes well in a harness, and has the run of the house( well the rooms that aren't closed ! ) and garden, and he gets so many cuddles...when he feels like it. Someone said on a Bengal kitty link, that he should be trained to keep his mind ticking over, and so I did using reward and repeat training. He picked most of it up in 14 days. We also leave a little water in the bath and sink because he loves to play in it !!! Mad, mad, mad !!!

Sorry for the full interogation, straight off in my first post, but with the stress of Mozzie possibly being a carrier now ( please advise ) and everything, I am so confused !!! Hope you can forgive me !!!

Peace, Love, and Happiness, Always
post #2 of 14
I would demand a test. In the USA these tests are not very expensive and they are easy to do. There is no reason not to test your kitty.

Regarding the potty problems (in combination with the odd smell), you need to have your kitty checked by the vet right away. The number one reason for urinating outside the box is physical illness.

If your vet specifically tests for urinary tract problems and finds none, please try the suggestions in this link


Bravo to you for rescuing this poor cat from a certain painful death!
post #3 of 14
Sonia ~

I just wanted to let you know how glad I am you made it here! It's good to see you. Jackie is here also - I'm sure she'll be checking in soon!

I'm so very sorry about Scuttles. I know you did all you could for him!

I'm sure someone here will be able to answer your questions ~ I just wanted to say welcome!
post #4 of 14
I wonder if Mozzie is missing Scuttles and therefore the yowling?
The litterbox issues are hard. Once a kitty marks a spot, it takes a good cleaning with an enzyme cleaner to remove any scent. There is a post about litter box problems in the forum at the top - maybe it could help.
Good luck and welcome to the site.
post #5 of 14
With the FELV, I am very surprised the vet did not run a test. It sounds like you may want to look for another vet. There are so many things that give symptoms such as felv.
Felv is usually transimitted through direct contact with each other. It's very hard to pass from a person to a cat. It would really depend on where Scuttles came from and was exposed to. How old was Scuttles? I would have Mozzie tested because you have no way of knowing for sure if he was exposed.
With Mozzie, my first question for you is he neutered? If he is not, thats the first step. You said he could aim. When they pee on a vertical surface, they are spraying and marking thier territory. If he is not neutered, you are probably just smelling what a whole male smells like. He may be using the house as a litter box because he is marking everything.
post #6 of 14
Thread Starter 
Mozzie is due for neutering in January 2002, as he is still very young. He hasn't started spraying the house. He just wiggles his bottom end and pushes his pelvis back into a corner nearer my room if he can't get into it. This morning, I had done the washing and a jumper of mine fell off the top of the laundry counter, he came in after using the litterbox, and before I knew it, he was squatting and starting to urinate. We told him off, and put him on the litterbox and left him in the room with it. Much yowling was heard and only when he calmed down did we let him out.

He was yowling before Scuttles passed so it isn't a new thing, it's just that as he's maturing, the yowls are becoming louder and more...er...reverbirating, not to mention much more drawn out and longer !!! When we bought Scuttles home we let Mozzie sniff him and he seemed to want some reassurance but tthat was it. Later that day, Scuttles was in a box awaiting our little ceremony, we always hold for our pets when they leave us. I didn't know Mozzie had come in, but suddenly there was a tremendous yowl and he totally freaked out. Poor thing ! I went to pick him up from the box, talking as I approached, but he went totally hysterical. He ran around the room like a wild cat, screaming and at every corner trying to climb the walls or the curtains. It was awful, when I finally caught him, I cuddled him and he screamed himself to sleep, where he slept for nearly 4 hours. The following days he wouldn't leave our sides. Now he is fine and he is as if nothing ever happened, the point is that the yowling is nothing new.

As for the litterbox problems, we have tried all of the suggestions given, such as trying different surfaces where her goes most, and using an odour remover from the vet ( which worked with all our other cats ) and several pet shops ones, to no avail. We keep the litterbox scrupiously clean, in fact we've tried leaving it dirty, cleaning after every use ( even when we had Scuttles as well ), different litters, different postions of the box in the same room, multiple boxes, covered boxes, uncovered boxes, different sizes, Peppermint essence, which he loved to roll in so we had to bath him regularly, lavender oil, ground pepper on the areas, everything that is listed. The only one we haven't tried is that cat ultrasound thing, because of our numerous other pets.

We are going to get Mozzie tested first thing on Monday, for FELV, and we'll have him checked over. But as far as the urinating and defeacating goes, we are at our wits end.

Peace, Love, and Happiness, Always
post #7 of 14
Sonia, I would definately get your kitties tested for FeLV and FIV. AND find another Vet. This Vet sounds like he takes things for granted. In medicine you can never be to sure.

I am so sorry about Scuttles.
post #8 of 14
It sounds like you need to re-train the cat to use the litter box. This will require locking the cat into a small room (bathroom) with a litter box, food and water. Pick up any rugs or other things that might be attractive to the cat and leave only the cat and litter box. (You can have a small sleeping area, but set it up in a way that he can't pee on it - like put the sleeping spot inside a short box that he can't stand up inside.) Keep the cat confined to this room until he is using the box exclusively.

While he is living in the room, very carefully clean all old urine spots. Buy some NokOut (search this site for a link) which Sandie swears is the best odor killer.

I think this might work.

Good luck!
post #9 of 14
Thread Starter 
Thank you everyone for your thoughts, ideas and replies.

I have the little monster...*ahem*...darling...isolated in the kitchen, with a small, but warm, bed down. He's been there all day now and he's still yowling quietly. He now has a hoarse throat, which makes him sound like a horror movie werewolf reject !!! We've gone in and sat with him, but he clearly doesn't get what he's done wrong. I spent nearly three hours tidying and cleaning and cooking the Sunday Lunch in there today and he yowled for all of that time, and climbed up my legs - these critters sure do have sharp claws !
I can't help feeling sorry for him, but the urination thing has got to stop, and we'll try anything. He's also booked in for a FELV
test tomorrow afternoon. Keep your fingers crossed !!!

Peace, Love and Happiness,Always
post #10 of 14
If everything is okay on the medical side, I really have to say this again, he is a male with some serious hormones and is yowling to get to the females and marking his territory. If he was said to be about a year, then he is really the right age for all of these things.
post #11 of 14
Thread Starter 
Hi Sandie,

The vet said to wait until 'the right age' approx
before neutering. Do you think I should have him
done sooner rather than wait ??? Someone also told me that Bengals
mature slower than other breeds...a bit skeptical on this as he's so cunning ! Does anyone know if this is the case ?

What are the pros and cons of having a cat neutered early ? I don't want to distress him in any way, so if the medical checks out alright and he still continues as he is, not that he seems distressed, but if he is, then I want to help him out. Sorry that really didn't make much sense !!! What I mean is, that if by not neutering him now and waiting another few weeks, I am causing him stress, then I will get him 'done' a.s.a.p. So what should I do, if he's medically sound ?

Peace, Love, and Happiness, Always
post #12 of 14
Actually, here in the states male cats are neutered as early as 6 weeks if necessary and the normal is between 5 and 6 months. From the guess they gave you on his age, he is REALLY ready to be neutered. Male cats are very easy to neuter and the surgery is very quick. Recovery is so much faster and easier than females. I don't think that anyone can say that Bengals mature slower. I have seen male Bengals get a female pregnant at 6 months, so I don't think it's true in all cases. If he were mine, I would have him neutered as soon as you can. I really do think it's going to eliminate most if not all of his behavior problems within a few weeks after his surgery.
post #13 of 14
Thread Starter 
We've had our previous two cats neutered in the past, so I have
no worries about the surgery and recovery itself, I just wondered
the pros and cons of early neutering. I spoke to my vet today ( we are still awaiting the test results ) about the neutering and he said that he really isn't ready for neutering yet. We contacted a totally different vet in a totally different surgery, and she also said to wait. She was recommended by the Cats Protection League. She said with the Bengal breed, and especially because he was small enough to sit on my palm, and have room to wriggle, when I bought him home at the end of June this year, she would definately wait until the end of January, at least. Medically he checked out fine, with the 'feel' tests, but she took some blood too, just to make sure.

Mozzie just loved the attention, not to mention the car ride, as he stared up at the passing scenery from his cat basket. As trees skimmed by he tried to swipe them...he was so relaxed...he's totally mad !!!

I am going back to my vet on Thursday for the results, and until
then we will keep him occupied and keep our fingers crossed.

I am considering booking him in early on, in January, for neutering though, I believe firmly in neutering, and would always act responsibly.

I did tell the vet what you said Sandie, and she said ordinarily she would do the job a few weeks early, but some Bengals, and certain long coated breeds need a little more time to develop, and she would be a lot happier, given his traumatic incident to leave him entire for a while longer. Apart from that, we should not do anything until we know where we stand with all his blood tests.

Peace, Love, and Happiness, Always
post #14 of 14
You know, I forgot when it was but I remember something similar with someone overseas. I am not sure why there is such a difference in age with neutering and such.
If all is okay on the medical end again, really I have seen this behavior with whole males all the time. If you need to keep the peace in the house until then I would try and keep him in just one room of the house with all of his toys, food and litter. This way all the mess is in just one room. It may also help to make him understand that he's supposed to use the litter box.
I hope that his test comes back okay! Do you know if they are also going to check for any urinary infections?
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