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Litterbox and Drinking Issues with New 14 Wk Old Savannah Kitten


Savannah Super Cat

This is my first post on this forum, but I have been reading all of the wonderful posts here for months. I actually have TWO issues going on, but they are related.

We just received our 14 week old male F4SBT Savannah kitten on Friday afternoon; he flew in from a breeder a few provinces away. Things started out great! We put him in his quarantine room and he went right into the litterbox (same litter as breeder used), ate some food and drank some water (same food breeder used as well). Loved to be with us right away, played like crazy with us and would fall asleep in our arms or on our laps. We have tried to spend most of our time with him and he has seemed to love it.
  • Food: EVO wet kitten food
  • Orijen dry kibble
  • Have also tried a couple of teaspoons of NaturesVariety raw chicken and beef.
Saturday evening though, he got up on our duvet (yes, I know this can be an issue with kittens), layed down and peed right where he was laying -- I immediately put him in the litterbox but he just jumped out. I did the usual strip of the bed, enzyme remover (the mattress was luckily spared) and washed everything. I put on new sheets but no blanket at all. The next morning, he got up and pooped on the same spot; I again immediately put him in the litterbox and he peed right away! Now I have a disposable adhesive baby pad on the spot and a bowl of kibble; he has not used the spot again, but he seems afraid of the litterbox now. I'm not sure what happened, but he seems to avoid it and looks at it with mistrust. He also now seems not to be drinking as much - (although I only figured that out since later yesterday) in fact I've not seen him drink for almost an entire day now; I have a running water bowl and a plain bowl of water out for him. He seems happy and he is still playing with us although he has been napping a lot in the afternoons -- it is very hot where we are, so maybe that is normal? I know that the wet food has moisture in it, but his lack of drinking does concern me. He had his first vet visit yesterday and she did not see him as dehydrated and saw no other problem with him except a yeast infection in one ear (he had been scratching at it). I'm mad at myself because I did not really connect the dots about the reduced drinking until after I returned from the vet's office. Anyways, the vet prescribed Surolan drops for our boy and we started those yesterday. Kitty did pee yesterday afternoon in the litterbox (I put him there) but I did not see him pee again all evening (and I went to bed at midnight). When I checked the box this morning, there was a clump of pee and some poop (yay - although the pee clump was not enormous); the pee was dry so he must have done it during the night. I put him in the box again when I got up and he peed, but it seemed to take a while to come out. (Could he be having issues from his neuter, which was only maybe a week and a half ago?) He finally did pee, but it was not a huge amount. Today I started squirting a little bit of water into his mouth using a syringe. I've given him about 12 mls so far. His breeder is not well and at a hospital today so she is unable to assist me. My vet is away until tomorrow and I am at work all day and can't take the day off.

My questions:
  • How concerned should I be?
  • How can I get him back 'on' his litterbox? What could have happened? It is a hooded litterbox....I removed the 'hood' today in case it is scaring him....
  • How much pee should such a young kitten be producing?
  • Should I be seeing him gulp huge quantities of water or does his wet food (which is the majority of his diet, carry enough for him?) He seemed to drink so much more the first two days he was here.
Thank you for your help! This is making me a nervous wreck!



Staff member
Hi Kat,

You may not see him drink alot...and your vet did not think he was dehydrated, so he probably is not. I wouldn't force fluids on him unless he is truly dehydrated...

Removing the hood is probably a good sounds like he is going into his litterbox, but you can always use kitten or cat attract...

if you continue to be concerned, you can talk to your vet tomorrow...doesn't sound like an emergency, since he is eating, drinking a bit, peeing and pooping. Perhaps it could be talking to and/or seeing your vet is probably the best idea.


Staff member
I'm wondering if perhaps he has a UTI which can sometimes lead to incontinence. If he has another elimination accident I would do as Paige suggested and purchase some kitten attract to put on the litter. Outside of an infection, inappropriate urination is almost always a behavioral problem, but I can't see anywhere in your review of the situation a reason why he might develop such a problem at so young an age. Let me ask you this - has the environment changed at all? In other words, are you letting him out in more areas of the home, or do you have him sequestered in a small area such as your bedroom/bathroom? Sometimes a kitten will get confused when it first faces a large new home and will 'find' its own litterbox if it forgets where the real one is.

As for the drinking, if he doesn't appear dehydrated I wouldn't worry too much about it. To check for this pinch the skin up on the nape of his neck, if it springs back into place he is not dehydrated, but if it stands up or falls back slowly onto the neck he may be dehydrated.


Savannah Super Cat
Thank you Paige and Patti, for your advice. Just after I posted today, I put my kitten in the litterbox and he did a huge pee! :) He also took one lap from his water bowl (then ate a huge amount of wet food). I will do the pinch test for dehydration, just in case and will also check his gums. He sure does not act sick, but I have made an appointment to see the vet tomorrow nonethless, just so she can help rule out the possibility of a UTI. The breeder did call me this afternoon and we also discussed all of the possibilities.....this kitten came to us so healthy, with every test under the sun done on him before he arrived, so I hope and suspect now that these things we are seeing are just stress related. I've jsut never seen a cat or kitten pee while they were lying down before; that alone bears some investigation. I will be sure to follow up with news of how kitty is doing after tomorrow. Thank you again!

Brigitte Cowell

Staff member
I hope it was just some stress over the change in home and everything and he's now going to do just fine. I do think you should keep the lid off the litterbox for now though...if the breeder doesn't have hooded boxes it may really have freaked him out enough to not use it...


Savannah Super Cat
Hello everyone -- just following up on yesterday's message. My boy is drinking, peeing and eating and playing up a storm! And he is using the litterbox! He has also gained 3 1/2 ounces since I got him on Friday, so that is a good sign. Turns out that the breeder did not use a covered litterbox, so removing the lid was indeed a smart way to go. She also suggested that maybe the activity in his quarantine room was getting a bit too frenetic with us trying to spend so much time with kitty, so we backed off a bit (meaning minimizing my children's access to the room). I also stopped cleaning the litterbox every time he peed or pooped, so he would recognize that that was his spot to "go". So far so good! He is such a LOVELY boy - and crazy too! I've never seen a cat get so excited (love the ridge of fur that rises along his back when he plays). He actually leads me to my closet door where I keep his wand-toys, and stares at me and then the door, back and forth, until I open the door - then he picks the wand he wants and carries it away. :) Thank you all for your suggestions; you were a great comfort and a wonderful source of knowledge. I think he is indeed going to be just fine. :)


Staff member
I think you are right - he is going to be just fine. He sounds like quite a character - I hope you post pics soon!