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Landlord problems with the cat. Need help.

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hi, I'm trying to get some suggestions here.

We've been living in our duplex for a year now with our two cats.  For the first six months, everything went fine.  Then, one day, I woke up and there was pee on EVERYTHING! Kitchen counters, couch, carpet, kitchen table, bathroom sink, kitchen floor, every carpet.  Some just spots, others full-out bladder busters!  They had also knocked over every potted plant, climbed onto shelves and knocked things over.  They destroyed the bottom of the pantry door, chewing through it (its one of the sliding plastic folding doors.) knocked everything down there and peed on food boxes (just the ones with pasta in them for some reason)


I don't know why.  They've always been loved dearly, treated like my own kids.  Their litter box was clean and everything. 


Well, I cleaned the mess up (which took a few days).  And I kid you not, the same evening that I had finished gluing the last plate back together, they did the exact same thing! It has been repeating itself over the past six months.  When I went to renew the lease on our duplex, the landlord has said that the peeing needs to stop or we have to get rid of the cats.  


We took the cats to the vet.  There's no bladder infections, nothing that they can find.  I spent several weeks cleaning the apartment.  I spent a lot of money on a carpet and upholstery cleaner, several different products to get the smell out of the carpet.  I was successful! The smell was gone.  You couldn't even tell we had cats!  Then..this morning.  It was like they did a complete sweep.  You couldn't look anywhere without seeing at least a little spot of urine.  


I don't know what to do.  I really don't know what to do.  I can't spend every one of my days off doing nothing but cleaning up cat urine just to keep them.


Any suggestions on how to make them stop?

We love our cats a lot.  Aside from this, they are so sweet and well behaved, great with my son and even do well on a harness to play in the park.  I'm just exhausted of this and we can't just up and move just for the sake of the cats. Help would be greatly appreciated.Thanks


post #2 of 16

Could it be stress? Has anything changed around the house? Different routine, work schedule, litter, anything new? Are you sure it is both cats doing it? How old are they? Are they spayed/neutered?

post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 

I can't say for sure that the major mess is both cats.  The cats are Freezepop and Midna.  I've seen both of them peeing in the house recently.  So I know they both at least contribute somehow.  Freezepop seems to be the one who knocks stuff over, though.  I can tell because she's ..well she has a LOT of white, puffy fur.  I've found tufts of her fuzz in some of the most unbelievable places.  Still, she does have a tendency to fall asleep on top of shelves and tables with the contents strewn all over the floor.  


Midna is about four.  Freezepop is almost two.  We got her shortly after she was born. Both female and yes, they've been spayed.  


I don't really think there's been any real changes or new stresses except for the fact they've been destroying EVERYTHING.  


I don't know.  I really can't think of anything.  We even got them a bigger litter box, thinking they might not be comfortable in the one they had.

post #4 of 16

Is there any chance of an incomplete spay? Have either been acting differently?


Were YOU under unusual stress when it started? Sometimes a stressed owner can cause a stressed kitty.

post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 

Honestly, I don't know anything about an incomplete spay.  The vet didn't say anything about it when we took them there to ask about the peeing problems.  Could that cause them to suddenly want to mark everything?


I really don't remember the state I was in when this all started.  I don't think I was stressed.  I'm generally not a stressed person.  It might of been my son.  He's very much ADHD, but he's never done anything to the cats.  They're his best friends.  Always clinging to him, they sleep with him. Everything.  He does none of the work, but gets all the loving orngtongue.gif.  He'll be devastated if we have to get rid of them.


I can't exactly afford a pet psychologist, but are there any other signs to tell if a cat is having...stress issues?

post #6 of 16

you could try something like feliway which is a pheremone that helps calm them down. I would also try switching your litter to Cat Attract, which works wonders. How many boxes do you have? you should have at the very very minimum 2, but 3 would be better (1 for each cat plus 1 is the general rule).


How much enrichment do they get? I would set aside time for them everyday to play and interact with them. I would also try and rule out if it is just one of them or both. Did the vets do bloodwork? I would be worried about kidney issues.

post #7 of 16
Thread Starter 

Hmm.  We've used the calming collars before, but would it stop them from peeing?  


I'll look into the litter, but it's not like they don't use the box.  We have two.  One regular sized one downstairs and a big multi-cat one in the bathroom upstairs.  We use fresh-step multi-cat with ammonia shield.  I almost have to clean the boxes every day, yet they still have enough to mark my entire house! 


As for ruling them out.  I've seen both of them do it.  Right in front of me.  While I watched.  Not that often.  I've caught Freezepop once and Midna twice now.  Once, we were sitting on the couch and we watched freezepop walk right over to the shelf, hop up onto a lower one and freakin' pee all over the movies.  I threw away a lot of movie cases that night.  Then, once while brushing my teeth, Midna came in, walked over to the spot in-between the rugs and pee almost on my feet.  Then again when we had company over, Midna came down stairs, walked through the living room to the kitchen.  A few seconds later, I saw this river of liquid stream past the portal between the two rooms, and disappear under the fridge.  When I went into the kitchen, there she was, peeing in the middle of the room.  


Its not like they don't get lovings.  My son plays with them every day.  We have lots of toys, a few scratching posts(which they ignore in favor of a few cardboard boxes we leave out for them), They get brushed every day.  Freezepop especially since she has such long fur.  Heck, we even take them to the park with us on harnesses if its warm enough.  They can't go outside where we live.  They'll get run over.  Freezepop escaped one day and the man that found her said she was sleeping in the middle of the road.  She's deaf, so she couldn't hear the cars!  


The vets took blood when we took them in about the peeing since we thought they'd have an infection.  They seem fine.  


I was just thinking, though.  I just found out that the people renting the other side of the duplex have a cat I didn't know about.  Maybe they can smell it through the walls and feel the need to mark territory?  Do females even do that?

post #8 of 16

Originally Posted by Cadence Proper View Post


The vets took blood when we took them in about the peeing since we thought they'd have an infection.  They seem fine.  


I was going to suggest a blood test for kidney function specifically, because a cat with chronic renal failure (not infection) can start peeing in strange places, and the other cat can start imitating.



I was just thinking, though.  I just found out that the people renting the other side of the duplex have a cat I didn't know about.  Maybe they can smell it through the walls and feel the need to mark territory?  Do females even do that?


Oh yes they do. I've seen a female barn cat fight with a neighbor's female cat, win that fight, chase her out "off the property" to the fence between the two houses, and then mark the fence posts and the grass clumps around it.


For your cats' behavior to change that much, there must have been a really big event... new cat in the neighborhood might be it.


post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 

What can I do about that neighbor cat, though?  I have no interaction with my neighbors what-so-ever.  In all the time I've lived here, they haven't even made eye contact with me.  Very secretive.  The only reason I know they have a cat is because I can hear it on occasion.  They've been at this for months now, so if it IS the cat, I doubt they'll ever get over it.  

post #10 of 16

I wish I knew... if the cat was in a house across a driveway, you could maybe cover the windows, but in the same building where they can hear... I don't know. Something to calm / distract / refocus them, but what? Catnip parties and a fish tank?

post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 

HAH! Catnip parties.  Those girls do love catnip.  They actually managed to knock the container of nip off the table once (my careless son didn't put it back in the drawer after refilling their catnip bowl)  and ...wow...  I came into the kitchen to find freezepop lying in the middle of the mess.  She looked like she should have been in an anti-drug campaign TV commercial!  I was worried she would get sick, but after cleaning her up and with some time, she seemed to bounce back to normal.  


I hope the neighbor cat isn't the problem, though.  What I'm afraid of, though, is that now that they've peed on everything, that even if the initial problem has already been addressed, that they've now just gotten used to peeing in those places and it'll be darn near impossible to break them of the habit.

post #12 of 16

Have you tried Feliway spray? This is something you should be able to get at your vet's http://www.feliway.com/gb

post #13 of 16

Have you ever watched the show My Cat From Hell? I got my friend to watch it,and it was helpful in giving her ideas on how to deal with spray/inappropriate elimination issues with her cats. She has 5. Voiding out of the box seems to be a very common problem that develops with cats. Lol, I think my friend has 8 litter boxes!


Just keep trying different things to remedy the situation. Keeping the cat in a restricted location will help lessen the damage all over the house. The enzyme cleaners are getting cheaper these days for clean up.A black light will help find spots you missed. You could put the contact paper over the windows that screens it so the cats do not see the neighbors cat.


Some people opt for drugs.Resucue remedy might help.

post #14 of 16

Another vote for feliway here- we started using the room diffuser to ease the stress of moving, and it really seemed to help keep the kitties calm so we continued using it for quite a while.  It might be worth a try.  Good luck!!

post #15 of 16

First of all, you have my complete sympathy with the cleaning issue.  We had a diabetic cat that had daily pee-fests.  Very difficult times....



We have lived through several periods of cat insanity.  I agree with the other poster that a new cat next door might be the source of your problems.  (No suggestions on what to do about that cat)


If Feliway doesn't work, ask your vet about anti-anxiety drugs or kitty prozac.  It is really inexpensive.  We had to use it twice.  Once, one of the cats got tangled in a bag and had a total freak out. The other time, the male cat decided to regularly beat the crap out of the female cat.  After all the tests were done, the vet put them on kitty prozac and with a month, both were completely recovered/cured.

post #16 of 16

You have my sympathies!  I lost an elderly cat to renal failure, and he was so uncomfortable that he would pee anywhere that seemed cool and comfortable; he also (I think) deliberately peed in weird spots in front of me to call my attention to his discomfort.  He was letting me know.  I have had good experience with kitty pheromone stuff, the Cat Attract litter or litter additive already mentioned, and also kitty prozac.  We adopted a kitty from the Humane Society last fall, and I wasn't told that she was born to a feral mom/had been trapped with her litter mates (she probably would have been a little more comfortable in a quieter home environment, but we love her).  She's still really tuned it to her lizard brain and is especially skittish around my four year old son, although her tolerance has increased greatly, and my son takes extra care to move slowly and quietly near her as much as possible.  She has shown a preference for peeing on the feather duvets that we use on our beds, which is lovely.  The kitty prozac got us over the hump with that.  A friend of mine who also has had a lot of experience with cats mentioned that she'd either read somewhere or been told by a vet that something like 90% of inappropriate elimination behaviors in otherwise healthy cats are resolved with kitty prozac.  It might be worth a try.  Good luck!

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