Refuses litter box

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (Welcome & Main Forum)' started by Morgan Williams, May 12, 2020.

  1. Morgan Williams

    Morgan Williams New Member

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    Mar 22, 2020
    Arizona has refused her litter box for awhile now. I had her using it mostly , but she stopped. Turns out her body started adjusting to the insulin and her sugar was a little on the lower side. Not dangerous, but left unchecked it get there. The vet went down a unit and she feels great. She still refuses the box. She wants to pee in the floor or stove and poop on the counter. She is completely cleared of any medical reasons why she's doing this and the vet is at a loss. Any help ?
     
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  2. Sharon14

    Sharon14 Well-Known Member

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    Aug 16, 2015
    Ugh! I’ve had one pee on the counter before, that is not pleasant!!! Have you tried a different litter, maybe move the box to another location? An extra box?
     
  3. Becky & Baby Girl GA

    Becky & Baby Girl GA Well-Known Member

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    Sep 15, 2017
    When my girl was first diagnosed, she occasionally did this & no medical reason. I switched to Dr. Elseys cat attracts litter, advised by someone here. It did the trick! I purchased a new larger litter box at the same time & filled it fresh. I don’t know if it will work for you but I was sold! Good luck to you
     
  4. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Personally I would put more boxes down in different places. Probably WOULD change the type of litter. Might even put a different litter in each box...stand back and wait. It could be pricey but weighing the alternative... it might save your nerves.
    LOVE the name Arizona. ;)
    j.
     
  5. Morgan Williams

    Morgan Williams New Member

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    Mar 22, 2020
    Sorry I'm late getting back after posting. It's been a crazy few days. I had 4 pans for two cats. I have my other cat's two boxes where he prefers them, but he'll use any box as long as it has litter. She has her two boxes in the kitchen where she seems to try to go to the most and his two are in the dinning room where she also tries to go right beside the back door next to the air vent so the dogs have a chance if stepping in it on their way in and out. She's peed in the vent before a couple times now! I have used so many litters for her. I've even tried sand, news paper, dirt, litter, and then a couple combinations on each. Yesterday I got her a really deep box and filled it with her favorite litter. I think she may have pooped in it, but it could've been the other cat. I'm thinking it was her, but the fact that it was covered makes me think it was the other cat. I just caught her trying to poop on the counter 10 minutes ago. I tried to set her in the new box, favorite litter and an attractant added in, and she growled at me (normal) and took off running. I found her in the bathroom trying to poop in a hard to reach spot so I pulled her out. it was a huge ordeal which lead to pooping as she ran and leaving a trail to clean up plus the bit on the counter. I'm at my wits end. I can't keep a clean house because of her. I will clean my counters and try to block them off with everything known to deter cats and boom, she's up there anyway making them coated in something I have no clue what it is. It's like a brown film that eventually covers wherever she sits. Eventually she tries to poop on the counter and pee on the stove. The vet has no more solutions to try and told us to accept she's a difficult cat. She shows no pain while relieving herself so I can't see any medical reason . I was using pads on the floor because she'd pee on them every time, but she pees so much it just runs off and under the pads. I have different litters for each cat so she has options. If I notice she's going into same spot over and over again I'll place a box over the spot. She will still go beside the box. I had a small hiccup in finding her litter when the pandemic started and it's like since then she will have nothing to do with the box. I've since found her litter and she still wants nothing to do with it. I'm honestly so tired of this. I'm supposed to be working towards buying a house with my partner within the year and I can't expect him to still be willing to do it with her being like this. He is very understanding, but I can't ask him to move in a house that can have pee and poo around any corner. I thinking maybe the other cat stresses her to the point of maybe being scared of the box? Anytime she's near the boxes I give her her favorite treats to do positive reinforcement, but she's still running from the box. I'm so stressed out over this I'm in tears tonight .
     
  6. Diane Tyler's Mom

    Diane Tyler's Mom Well-Known Member

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    Sep 21, 2018
  7. Sharon14

    Sharon14 Well-Known Member

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    Aug 16, 2015
    Wow it seems you have tried everything! Could you confine her to one room for awhile? Maybe some time away from the other cat and dogs will help calm her if it’s nerves. If you try that, be sure to spend time with her though. Here is a site that may have some other ideas
    http://www.thehappylitterbox.com/category/cat-pooping-outside-litterbox/

    This is odd. Can you get a picture?
     
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  8. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    A brown film? I wonder if her anal glands need expressing? maybe a UTI in the making? Shes equating that litter box with something...pain?
     
    Last edited: May 23, 2020
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  9. Diane Tyler's Mom

    Diane Tyler's Mom Well-Known Member

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    Sep 21, 2018
    You might be right, just googled and found this

    Anal gland discharge – there are two anal glands located on each side of the rectum. ... On a tissue – this discharge can be yellow to brown and has a very foul odor. A couple articles that might be helpful to you are Vaginitis in cats, Feline Urinary Tract Disease, Diarrhea in Cats and Anal Glands in Cats.Mar 2, 2015
     
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  10. Morgan Williams

    Morgan Williams New Member

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    Mar 22, 2020
    This is the best picture I could get of it. If it is her anal glands, maybe that is why she scoots her butt after each poop. Its like the poop wants to stick to her. She's been wormed. Her vet has no idea why she scoots. She's never been the best at grooming and when she got sick she stopped grooming herself all together. The film like stuff is never wet that I can see. she's always had a little bit of it, but not like this.

    She shows no pain when. She does use the box. I saw her pee in it a couple weeks ago. I made sure no one went in there and I didn't make a sound. As soon as she stepped out I praised her and gave her favorite treats. During her time at the vet, I'm not sure if it was being in a smaller cage, but she used the box with the occasional accident on the towels. They offered litter some days and paper on others. I've been considering cleaning out my spare room for her to stay in during the day and letting her come out while I'm home. I've also tried aroma therapy! Forgot to add that. Her vet suggested it to see if it was her stress levels making her not use the box. For the first two weeks back home she stayed in the spare room with the door closed to give her time to recover, aroma therapy seemed to help for a week or so, but it didn't after that. I've seen a collar that is supposed to be calming for cats who wear it ? Has anyone tried that ?
    Also, has anyone used Scoon litter or the pine needle pellet litter? It's the next step is she's decided to hate her litter.
     

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  11. Sharon14

    Sharon14 Well-Known Member

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    Aug 16, 2015
    If you think it might be stress related, maybe try some of this https://www.chewy.com/rescue-remedy-stress-relief-pet/dp/135502 I have never used it, but have heard good things about it. I have a feral Tom coming around and he’s got one of my cats spraying in the house. Feliway isn’t helping, so I may give this stuff a try myself!
     
  12. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Check her paws for ingrown nails? Some cats (like my Zoe) like deep litter.(she thinks shes escaping to China):eek:
    Some cats like just an inch of litter. ;)
     
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  13. Morgan Williams

    Morgan Williams New Member

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    Mar 22, 2020
    I'll have to read up on that ! It was feliway that I used before. I used two of the bottles before I gave up. I let her play in catnip whenever she seems interested in the catnip play areas in the house. I'm going in search a live catnip plant tomorrow to see if that helps more.


    As far as I know her claws are fine. She never messes with her feet. Just occasionally cleans them. She'll let me mess with them, but is annoyed I'm messing with her. I have one box filled with a lot of litter and then the other two with lower levels to see if that helped. It didn't. Today I came home to a poop and pee on the counter and then it looks like she had a small throw up from eating a plant. I try to keep them out fo her reach and have almost all on my porch, but I have one on the counter she had eaten down to the soil. I guess she got the one leaf that popped up this week. She's fine and feeling good so I know it didn't make her actually sick.
     
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  14. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Well the claws was a last ditch idea. I learned about litter level from a member here finding out his "out of the box" kitty preferred a very shallow amount of litter. That took care of his problem. I had hoped there would be more usable ideas for you. :(
     
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  15. Sharon14

    Sharon14 Well-Known Member

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    Aug 16, 2015
    Did you get a chance to check out the Happy Litterbox site I linked above? There Is a lot of info and maybe some ideas that we haven’t thought of. Here’s the link again in case you missed it http://www.thehappylitterbox.com/
     
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  16. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    HA! Sharon I WAS going to suggest MW watch episodes of "My Cat From Hell" but this is WAY better! TY I BOOKMARKED that address! lol
     
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  17. Morgan Williams

    Morgan Williams New Member

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    Mar 22, 2020
    I'm going to read up on it tonight ! This week has been insanely busy with a broken down car. I have spoken to her vet tech over the phone. She has an appointment for a sugar test coming up and I asked them to make sure to look at her anal glands. Looking at that seems like it is a HUGE possibility after reading some about it, but I'm going to clean out the spare room for her to be in when I'm not home
     
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  18. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

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    Dec 28, 2009
    Love this avatar of Arizona
     
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  19. JanetNJ

    JanetNJ Well-Known Member

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    Jun 8, 2016
    Try Feliway diffusers. I have one who rarely pees in a box. Fortunately we found a compromise and she will pee on puppy pads outside the box. If there are stray cats around the area that could trigger a response of wanting to mark territory.
     
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  20. Morgan Williams

    Morgan Williams New Member

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    Mar 22, 2020
    JanetNJ, that is what I've used before. She isn't marking territory. She's been fixed for years now and has never done anything like that except her first and only time going into heat. She just hates the box? Last weekend I cleared out my spare room and yesterday I finished up mopping and moving the bigger storage items in the corner. I let her in there when the floors were dry and she was very happy. She peed in the box, but has pooped outside of the box twice since 3 p.m yesterday, but I haven't found any pee outside the box. I'm letting her hang out in the spare room now with her dinner and she has calmed down. She just walked around meowing. She honestly could've wanted out ir just liked how she sounded since it echos some. She had an appointment Friday for a sugar check and I asked them to check her anal glands while she's there. My mother will be taking her since I work.
     
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  21. Judy and Freckles

    Judy and Freckles Well-Known Member

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    Oct 20, 2019
    Just checking that Arizona is on 11 units of prozinc twice a day? Has she been tested for acromegaly or IAA? When cats get to higher insulin amounts that's something to consider.
     
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  22. JanetNJ

    JanetNJ Well-Known Member

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    Jun 8, 2016
    I have not found feliway sprays as effective as the diffusers. I have three diffusers in my house and can always tell when one has run out.

    Do you have a spreadsheet of numbers you could share? Would you like help setting one up?
     
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  23. Morgan Williams

    Morgan Williams New Member

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    Mar 22, 2020
    JanetJT, It is the diffusers I've used with her. I went through two bottles worth and wasn't seeing any difference in her behavior. I am considering trying them again for her. I've also seen some Calming collars at Walmart? I'm not sure how well it works.

    Judy and Freckles, she was just lowered to 10 units twice a day now. Her vet told me because of the weird situation of how she became diabetic that she'll be this dose with small fluctuations as her body adjusts . On a previous post I did, someone else had commented a high dose was normal for her situation , too. We haven't tested for anything else because I've based all I know off of what the vet has informed me. This site is the only place I am anke to get real information and suggestions from people who experience diabetic cats.


    I did want to update everyone, yesterday Arizona spent my work hours in the spare room set up for her. She was calm most of the day. I have a doggie camera I set up to keep an eye on her and throw treats when she got rowdy. I only saw twice she scratched at the door, BUT SHE USED THE LITTER BOX 4 TIMES with no known accidents outside the box. She still has her appointment Friday and I have asked them to check her anal glands just in case. I'm hoping for an equally successful day for her today.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2020 at 9:28 AM
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  24. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

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    WOOT WOOT!:woot: Good job Arizona!
     
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  25. Morgan Williams

    Morgan Williams New Member

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    Mar 22, 2020
    She's been laying in a box in the window almost all day. I think she's now in the catnip box under the camera ! I don't see any evidence of accidents so far ! If this proves to work for her, it's a good thing my partner and I have already discussed making sure she has her own room when we buy a house haha
     
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  26. jt and trouble (GA)

    jt and trouble (GA) Well-Known Member

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  27. ReneeM787

    ReneeM787 New Member

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    May 19, 2020
    Morgan, I'm so sorry you and she are going through this. It is so hard and you wish they could just "use their words" to tell you what is wrong. I have 2 thoughts, 1 is anal glands. My diabetes cat (also has thyroid issues) has sometimes had to have her anal glands expressed. Taking her to the vet to do this will be the best $35 you ever spend. It's basically impossible for me to do myself, and if you do it wrong you can really hurt them. If you rear hurts and you associate the toilet with the pain, you might try to go elsewhere too!

    The other thought is medication. Years ago I had a cat that drove me mad because we could find no reason for her to urinate on the bed, but she would at really random times. Sometimes 6 months, no issue. Other times, 3 times a week. Once ON ME WHILE I SLEPT! What a way to wake up. We put her on a small dose of amitriptyline and that solved the issue.

    BEST!
     
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  28. JanetNJ

    JanetNJ Well-Known Member

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    Jun 8, 2016
    such good news that she's been using the box!
     
  29. Morgan Williams

    Morgan Williams New Member

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    Mar 22, 2020
    She seems to still be doing well today. Just napping away. I plan to set up a bird feeder outside the window so she can watch them throughout the day. It is her favorite hobby besides eating.

    Renee, she has an appointment this Friday for a sugar check and I asked them to check her anal glands. Someone suggested it here and it makes sense. Thankfully when she refuses the box she seems to go in the same spots outside if the box each time. It is mostly right beside the box. She hadshad a history of thinking she's in the box and her butt hanging out, but I mostly think she's using those spots on purpose. What is amitriptyline and what is it for ?
     
  30. JanetNJ

    JanetNJ Well-Known Member

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    Jun 8, 2016
    Maybe put puppy pads in those spots
     
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