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Litter box problems

Discussion in 'Savannah Cat Behavior' started by AundreaLea, Jan 22, 2012.

  1. AundreaLea

    AundreaLea Savannah Super Cat

    Messages:
    56
    I have 2 f7 boys, 4 months old. They have been here for over a month now. They are both very loving toward us, following us and purring. We have two litter boxes that are kept clean. Both appear to be using the boxes. We had a DSH (Walker) that passed away shortly prior to us getting Ulysses and Jackson. Walker slept with us. We only recently start letting the kits into our bedroom. And letting them sleep with us. The problem is that one has started to urinate on our bed. Actually he started to urinate on us in the bed. He has also urinate on us sometimes if we are snoozing on the couch with a blanket. He doesn't give any warning. All of a sudden you feel warm liquid. Now I've discover that he has gone into our room and urinated on the bed again. The bed was stripped for washing. So now our room is off limits again. Any suggestions on how to break Ulysses of this habit? Thanks.
     
  2. Pam Flachs

    Pam Flachs Savannah Super Cat

    Messages:
    2,923
    Hi Aundrea,

    Congrats on your new boys---they are cuties! To start with...are you using the same litter they used at the breeder's? Cats and kittens don't like change, so it's best to use the same litter and have another box with litter one you might want to change to. I assume you have purchased brand new litter boxes so as not to have your old kitty's (RIP) smell in them? How far away are the boxes from your bedroom? They may not be able to get to them fast enough if they "gotta go", or if they are kept in an out-of-the way area that is a bit hard to get to. For some reason, some cats like to urinate on very fluffy down or down-like blankets, and if the blankets smells like your past cat, that may be reason why, as I'm sure your couch does, too. You may have to use new or different, freshly washed blankets. Any soiled blankets should be washed in an enzyme cleaner to remove the urine smell. Some have used vinyl curtains to cover the bed for cats who want use it as a litter box. You may also have to keep the kittens out of your room until this is resolved. You may have to keep the offender or both in a small area for a few weeks (bathroom, etc) with a clean new litter box to retrain him to reinforce the use of the litter box only. Is it possible to add another litter box in or near your bedroom? For 2 cats, 2 litter boxes are adequate; 3 is better, and as large as possible. Plastic Sterilite or Rubbermaid type boxes work great and are much cheaper than regular cat litter boxes. There is also the possibility the kitten that is urinating on you may have a bladder infection...you might want have him checked by your vet to rule that out. Since they are young, you should be able to successfully solve this problem before it becomes an ingrained habit :)
     
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  3. AundreaLea

    AundreaLea Savannah Super Cat

    Messages:
    56
    Thanks, Pam. We're going to have him checked for a bladder infection when he goes in to get neutered next week per his vet's suggestion. Litter boxes are new. It is a different litter, and we went thru a transition period. I do see both cats using the boxes. After some issues with Christmas tree skirts, no one has defecated outside of their boxes. I guess it helps that all of the floors that they have access to are hardwood or tiled. Right now the boxes are in the front room, right next to the TV room. Very close to where we spend most of the time. I'll see what the vet says before we try the lockup plan. :cat:

    Could you suggest an enzyme cleaner for the wash? Our bedroom has become the forbidden room again.
     
  4. Brigitte Cowell

    Brigitte Cowell Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    5,430
    For enzyme cleaners, either http://uniquedistributors.com/petodel.html or http://www.antiickypoo.com/ are really good quality enzyme cleaners. I like the Unique Distributors one for the economy factor as it is dilutable, but the AntiIckyPoo comes in a fragrance free version which I like.

    Be sure to treat bedding thoroughly, I soak overnight in a dilution of the enzyme cleaner and throw in the machine to launder as normal the next morning. Be sure to avoid laundry detergents that contain bleach. It is natural to think bleach a good thing to clean something that has been dirtied like that, but for some cats the smell of bleach will attract them to pee there! So use it to clean litterboxes but not elsewhere!

    Consider going back to the litter they liked before, or try CatAttract for a while... better to not have them peeing elsewhere than have the litter YOU want to use. Is the new litter a different texture for example?

    As Pam suggested, using a plastic sheet to cover the bed when not in use can be good. Although if the kittne has peed with you in the bed then you might have to consider using it as a comforter cover for a short while. There are mattress protector sheets you can purchase that aren't so noisy plastic that might work well.

    I'd also recommend litterboxes in more than one location. Although you might think the living room is a good location, they might think different so by offering more than one location it might make the difference. And these are not permanent changes...just until they are reliably using the boxes, then you can scale back. So consider a number of boxes in a number of locations and see if it improves their behavior.

    And do have them checked for a UTI... the peeing when sleeping on your lap is concerning...
     
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  5. Breheart

    Breheart Guest

    Hi Aundrea,

    I had recently gone through a similar problem with my 5 month old kitten Keljin. What I eventually learned from the experience, was that he was protesting. Each time he would have an accident on the bed, it would always happen while I was on the computer or in another room not attending to him. After confining him to the bathroom overnight and while at work, and strictly letting him out for playtime while supervised helped him understand the picture that the bathroom was "THE" place to go potty. I also covered the beds in tinfoil and plastic bags to help him avoid it. After about two weeks of gradually letting him out more and more often until he had free house roam once again he has not had an accident since! I feel mean when I heard him cry in the room all alone, but it was for the best in enforcing good litter box habits until he got the picture.

    I agree too with up above on maybe getting an extra litter box or two, and for sure enzymatic cleaner! I had to learn through about 6-8 bed accidents until I got my hands on some cleaner and followed up with success of the above plan. I felt bad hearing him cry when he was alone in his room, I did my best to play with him as much as I could to make him tired so that his unsupervised time would strictly be to eat, sleep, and potty until he could be let out again. Even though it may not be protest accidents like mine, since he is actually going ON people too, it sounds like a totally different situation, though I still recommend the same advice to build stronger potty habits :) Hopefully that helps!

    Good Luck!
     
  6. Breheart

    Breheart Guest

    Too late for me to edit but I wanted to clarify: Keljin's issues were not really protest, not quite the right wording I wanted and now I realized it may sound bad. He didn't do it out of spite, he was just unsupervised and had poor litter box habits!
     
  7. AundreaLea

    AundreaLea Savannah Super Cat

    Messages:
    56
    Both kitties have been checked for infections and came back with a clean bill of health. Right now they are spending the nights and while we are at work in the bathroom. A new litter box with kitten attract litter is in there with them. I clean it twice a day. Believe me this kitten attract litter attracts them. When I was pouring both couldn't wait to get to it. The first hour I found Jackson all curl up in the litter box sleeping. Jackson is the one who wasn't having any issue. Right now this seems to be the only box that is being used. We have started the black light and clean up inspection. The only issue I have at the moment is the litter is a clumping litter which I hate. The other litter boxes are the Breeze system which I find very easy to keep clean. I can't use the kitten attract litter in these boxes due to their construction. So we thought that after we have consistent litter box usage we'll try toilet training with the boys. Has anyone had experience with this?
     
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  8. Kronos

    Kronos Guest

    I am currently toilet training Kronos. My advice is to not even attempt it until their regular litter box habits are solid. When Kronos had really bad diarrhea, I made the mistake of trying toilet training and set Kronos up for failure... he was pooping everywhere except in the toilet-trainer box.

    Back to regular boxes we went. Now that his stool is normal, we are training again, this time with great success. I am moving very slowly as I have also learned that he is a sensitive boy and does not like change. I have his toilet-trainer litter box on the floor in both my bathrooms. Right now he is getting used to going potty in small places and that going to the bathroom is the correct place to go. After a few more weeks I will take the plunge and move the trainer box on the toilet.

    One thing that you must do is find a flushable cat litter. That could be something you work on now, because you cannot toilet train your cats using any system without a litter that is safe to flush in case any spills in. I like the Worlds Best Cat Litter, but it does clump. It is easy to simply flush everything I scoop straight into the toilet, so I highly recommend giving it a try.

    If Kronos can do it, any cat can!
     
  9. AundreaLea

    AundreaLea Savannah Super Cat

    Messages:
    56
    The boys are on their way to being toilet training. We are up to the point where they are using the toilet with a half roasting pan that has two inches cut away in the back. I maintain about an inch of litter (flushable) in the pans. Ulysses and Jackson are doing fine with it. Every few days I will be taking another inch away.....
     
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  10. WitchyWoman

    WitchyWoman Admin Staff Member

    Messages:
    5,779
    What are you using to toilet train? I did a google search and thought the citikitty thing looked good. I wonder if a cat will readjust to using a litter box as it ages and balance becomes an issue.
     

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