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We have a 15 year old girl kitty named Sadie that has developed (IDK if that is the right term) and autoimmune disorder called phemphigus. Her first outbreak was a year ago and she's had 3 flare ups (including the original one). Each time she had the outbreak, the vet would do a culture and it would turn up positive for fungus even though they didn't really think that's what it was. So twice we've treated her with steroids and she's gotten better (for 6 months and 3 months, respectively).

This last time, he really wondered if it WASN'T phemphigus and we did a 30 day dose of an antifungal. She felt like crap on the antifungal even though her ears and bottom (where her outbreaks occur) showed improvement (although not near the improvement we see with the steroids). She lost 3 pounds while on the antifungals and began pottying outside the litter box.

She's been off the antifungals about 3 weeks now and, while I can tell she's starting to feel better (ie-she's eating again), she still won't use the litter box.

IDK if this has become a habit or if she still feels bad. We are starting her on steroid therapy again today (we finally broke down and did a biopsy which indicated the phemphigus). Regardless, we cannot allow her to continue to potty outside the box, especially with a young toddler crawling around.

I am making sure the box is super clean, but beyond that what can I do? There isn't really any pattern as to where she is going except that it is on laundry; doesn't matter to her where the laundry is or who's laundry it is.

I hate to say it, but I've begun to entertain the idea of putting her down. :cry The vet visits are really starting to add up (seems we are going weekly or every other week to the tune of about $60-$125 a visit) and she is so miserable during the outbreaks on top of the litter box issues. Please help me help her!
 

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I'm so sorry to hear about your kitty. This is such a heartbreaking time, trying to make the right decision for your beloved pet and family. I just want to offer my support.

I did want to share that we have two 5 year old male cats, and they have had a tendency to mark laundry since my DH and I got together. (Never did it once before my DH started hangin' around.) I think it's the body oil smell, especially on dirty laundry. We've learned never to leave dirty clothes out where the cats can get to them. Is there any way you can keep all laundry in a closet or drawers so that the option to pee on them is no longer there? It doesn't address the root of the problem, but it's a temporary fix. Just a thought...

I'll be thinking of you.
 

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You might try adding another litterbox in another location with maybe a different kind of litter. Cats can develop an aversion to the box because they associate pain they experienced while using the box with the box itself. Happens a lot with cats we see with cystitis. Cats usually do want to use a box, but the association with pain and your current box may be driving her to go elsewhere, so maybe that would help.
 
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