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Litterbox aim problem

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I'm having a problem with my cat's litterbox behavior I can't figure out how to curb. He's had some problems in the past with defecating and urinating around the house behaviorally, but those seem to have stopped. But now he's doing a new thing... he stands in the litterbox, but most to all of the poop goes over the side. It's a large box, but even when he's going correctly he only likes that one corner of it. Now, with this happening, he seems to think he's defecating in the box... he scratches in the litter before and after, and he's standing fully inside. But then after it goes over the side, he will sniff around it and do some extra scratching on the tile and tub next to it.

He had some problems with irregularity (both extremes) before, but I started feeding him a new food that's supposed to be easily digestible several weeks ago and now he's regular, less vocal when defecating, and the poop is less smelly.

His position while defecating has always been a bit strange and doesn't seem right. Maybe this is due to him having some poor posture?

It's possible that he's rubbing it/himself against the rim of the box to help it along as he goes. I don't know if this is physiological or behavioral. Is the litter not clean enough for him? He's still peeing there regularly and scratching in the litter like crazy, and some of the poop is ending up in the box.

Any thoughts as to how to fix this? I suppose I could try to move him to the center when he's in the box. Or should I put the poop in the box afterwards so he knows where it should be? I may also try moving the box over so it's right against the tub -- then the gap where he's aiming will be gone and he won't be able stand right against that corner of the box anymore.
post #2 of 10
Have you considered getting a covered litterbox? It's always possible that he would still poop right in the back of the box and mess up the cover, but on the other hand the enclosure might encourage him to move further into the box and solve your problem.
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
I did think of that. I don't know how well one would fit in my bathroom, but if nothing else works I might try it.
post #4 of 10
Sometimes my cats do the same thing. They seem to like to pee along the edge of the pan. Chynna will start and finish in the same spot. Abby tends to start and walk her way forward so that the urine falls in a line instead of a puddle. Sometimes they are too close to the edge and they over shoot the pan. Same thing happens with their bowel movements sometimes. Chynna has always been an "edger" but with Abby I think she sometimes gets confused and forgets to turn around once in the box.

Is your box sufficiently clear from walls and other barriers on all 4 sides? Some cats perfer to have 4 directions that they can face without banging their heads on a wall. However, other cats feel more safe if their litter box is in an enclosed area so they don't mind the walls.

Is your litter pan high enough? I had one pan that was quite low and Chynna being an "edger" always pee'd over the side and when she buried it 1/2 the litter ended up on the floor. I graduated to a taller pan with the same results. I then went to a pan that has 4 fold over edges that interlock together. Occasionally they still miss the pan, but not as often, and Chynna can no longer shovel out the box onto the floor.
post #5 of 10
How about a covered litter pan?

PetSmart also carries these boxes that the cat enters on one side and walks up a ramp along the side into the litterbox so the area where the litter is is completely enclosed. Does that make sense? It is hard to explain. I can't imagine it being all that cheap but you never know.
post #6 of 10
Oh and if your cat is still making some noise when gling to the bathroom I would be concerned that it really isn't behavior and may actually be a UTI or a blockage or something causing him pain. Has he actually been to the vet for the problem at all? He could be in pain if he is at all vocal when going to the bathroom. He may not show it or seem in pain to you.
post #7 of 10
MIL has a female that would often pee down the front of her covered litter boxz so I bought a deep Rubbermaid storage tub. I can still fill with plenty of litter and she can't get her butt to the top to hang out.
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
He has been to the vet recently, yes. I was concerned about the vocalizing around litterbox time (before and after, not during), but it's tapered off since I started the new food and now he seems comfortable. Also, to be fair, he's vocal about everything.

The box has pretty high sides, including the rim thing.
post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 
Boy. Sometimes it's the simplest answer. There was too much litter in the box, so the box was effectively much shallower than normal. Once it was back to normal the problem disappeared.
post #10 of 10
well covered litter boxes would help solve this problem but people suggest for people not to have lids on the litterboxes. some cats dont like them, but you could always try it.
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