Friday, May 03, 2013

terror of the cats

The saga of the cats continues, as life does. I've been enjoying having both cats here, even though it means I have more around the house work. I'm the cat feeder, water-er and litter scooper primarily (and yet ... neither of these cats are, strictly speaking, mine). Cats, being all smart and cat like, are quite aware of the fact that I take care of keeping them fed and so are extra sweet to me.

Plus, they've started genuinely playing and it's adorable and I'm a sucker for cat entertainment.

Bunny, though? Well the cats have been pissing Bunny off. Quite literally pissing him off. One of them keeps peeing on his clothes. He's had about as much as he can take of that and if he catches one in the act I'm pretty sure it won't be a pretty scene. I've increased the frequency of litter scooping to try and curtail the behaviour, but to no avail.

Any advice? How do I get the cat to stop doing this.


  1. Hi Sheryl, I am a new reader (found you at Amanda's Poppies and Ice Cream reading list). Cat's play time sounds adorable. I do not know of a solution for cats, how old are they? Cause when our dog stopped being a puppy, he started peeing on my stuff too and after we got him spayed (because we did not want him getting in trouble with ladies), he stopped peeing on everything.

    1. Hi!

      The cats are both about 13 and they're both fixed. It's a pretty big adjustment for some pretty old animals, so we're trying to be patient with coming up with ways to deal with them.

  2. Oh dear, cats peeing can be a very exasperating issue.

    Now I'm not a cat specialist, but I had a few ideas:
    - do you know which cat it is? Or do they both do it?
    - do one or both cats have bladder or kidney issues?
    - has this cat /have these cats have peeing /marking problems before?
    - how many litter boxes are there between the kitties? Could it be that kitty pees outside of the box because of a territory issue (not feeling safe in the box, feeling the need to 'mark' so as to claim Bunny)? Would it help to place another litter bos somewhere, remove the top of the box and / or use different litter?
    - has there been a change in litter / box type?
    - are both kitties neutered?
    - has something changed about Bunny's clothes so that they smell of 'competition'? Does a kitty pee on a sweater if he cuddled the other kitty with said sweeter on, for instance?
    - Could there be older markings from one or both kitties in the place where his clothes are that tempt them to pee there again and again?

    As for practical solutions: I only know work-arounds, such as leaving the clothes in a place the cats can't go, covering the clothes with tinfoil (apparently cats won't walk on tinfoil). A real solution depends in figuring out precisely why the cat does this, I think.

    Removing all traces of cat pee smell seems to be important to prevent them from peeing in places again, so if you don't yet use an enzymatic cleaner, this may be useful.

    I hope you get this sorted, because having cats pee on your clothes is miserable.

    1. We're definitely going to have to get some special detergent for the cat pee smell. We're pretty sure it's my mom's cat but haven't caught either in the act yet so it's hard to say for sure. It's also the first time either of them has pulled this ... our thought is that perhaps my mom's cat blames Bunny for bringing our cat over. But that seems like a whole lot of anthropomorphizing.

    2. Smitten Immigrant says she's no expert, but all of her questions are exactly what a vet would have asked.

      If the cat has not been spayed, that's where I would start (considering that the litter box is changed frequently / assuming it does not smell ). Or maybe you could have more than 1 litter box? At different places?

      My guess, ruling out kidney failure (but particularly if it is an old cat, you might want to check that), is that it is a territorial thing, specially if the cat doing it is the one that was living at the house before.

      You could also try pheromones, they sometimes work in cases like this (assuming it is stress / territorial). But since territorial behaviour is partly triggered by sexual hormones, if you have not spayed your cats, I would start there.

      *Also the cat litter should not have any smell at all (eg. cats hate lavender, and if the litter smells like flowers they will find somewhere else to go).

    3. They're both spayed, which makes figuring out the whole thing easier. I'm pretty sure it's a territory thing that my mom's cat is pulling. It makes life interesting, that's for sure.