Ask a QuestionHere are the questions asked by community members. Read on to see the answers provided by the ThriftyFun community or ask a new question.
I have a 3 year old Manx male cat. He is an inside house cat. He has never been outside very much. (He will not go out unless I pick him up and put him out.) The problem is he poops on the floor all the time sometimes as much as 3-4 times daily.
I have done everything. He has had different litter boxes, I even bought an electric Littermaid, changed litter, changed litter box locations. Nothing helps. I have tried punishing him, by speaking to him in a deeper tone of voice (he is a very smart cat and understands when you talk to him.)
I have tried rewards when he has not pooped on the floor. Like treats, brushing etc. He is worse when company comes over, especially my grandchildren (he is very jealous.) I am at my wits end with him. I love my cat, but not his pooping.
If your cat always eliminates in the same place, consider purchasing an enzyme-type cleaner to completely get rid of an odor only your cat notices. Try the "Callingallpets" website starting with WPR.org. Phone or e-mail the radio show to talk to an animal behaviorist. Good Luck!
Some Manx cats do have bowel troubles. They just are not well enough developed at the end of their spine. It could be a problem like that. If he has no tail at all, called a "rumpy" (a tiny short tailed Manx is called a "stumpy".)
Here's something from http://www.vetinfo.com
"Q: Hi! I've looked through your website to try and find an answer to my problem, but haven't seen it addressed. Here goes: I have a 5 year old Manx (true Manx with no tail, just fuzz) who has developed a pooping problem over the past several months. He poops around the house, mostly solid, not in any particular place, just random. He does this for a few days and then won't for a few months. During this time, he also uses his litterbox. He never urinates in the house, though, always in the box. I have two other cats, and they all have their current shots, FIP, etc. They are all indoor cats, never go outside, and eat Science Diet Light Maintenance. I have taken Simon to the vet many times about this and she does a fecal float test and never finds any parasites or anything. I would appreciate any advice you could give me, because he's my "first born" kid :) Thank you very much, T. A: Manx cats are prone to fecal (stool) incontinence because they are often missing part of the nerve plexus that controls the rectal area as well as missing a tail. I do not know of a treatment for this. Many people use metamucil or Vetasyl type products to keep the stools firm and make them easier to manage but that is about all I know that can be done. Mike Richards, DVM "
A: Manx cats are prone to fecal (stool) incontinence because they are often missing part of the nerve plexus that controls the rectal area as well as missing a tail. I do not know of a treatment for this. Many people use metamucil or Vetasyl type products to keep the stools firm and make them easier to manage but that is about all I know that can be done.
Mike Richards, DVM "
I had 2 manx cats and one of them had this problem. He was also a male. He really couldn't help it. We just kept him outside a lot and kept him contained at night.
Susan from ThriftyFun
My manx kitty does the same thing but I think she does it because she is nervous or hates the dog. I tired several different types of litter and boxes. I understand your frustration. She is 13 years old and has only in recent years started this behavior. I got a litterbox attractant from petco and it seemed to help. My cat only likes to do it when people are int the room, very embarasssing.
It is a breed problem. I recommend isolating cat in bathroom when gone but otherwise monitoring them. Manx are such a delight to own but this can be a problem. I lived with hardwood floors so it wasn't so bad but with carpet it is a drag. Also IAM's products are best for the stools. Never give them people food or milk. Don't have Vet talk you into expensive Xrays either. They are smart cats and are not doing this on purpose.
We adopted a kitten from the Humane Society and she is 4 1/2 months old. She easily trained to the litter box and used it fine for 2 months. Then 2 weeks ago she started defecating outside of the box (usually right next to or near it), but not in the box.
She urinates in the litter box just fine. Nothing has changed with her box or the litter. She's been to the vet and has no medical issues. Any suggestions? I cannot figure out why the sudden change in behavior and why she only uses the litter box to urinate. Please help, how do I get her to use the litter box for all eliminations?
By lilpaw from San Diego, CA
This is my first post. I grew up with cats and kittens are pretty easy to train. I don't know if this will work for yours, but what we would do was to pick up the poop and put it in the litterbox. They pretty much get the hint if you keep on doing it. Good luck!
I have several cats. I have 4 litter boxes. I scoop them out every day. It sounds strange, but one litter box always only has urine in it, never any poop. The poop is always in the other 3 boxes! Try adding another box. Good luck.
My first thought was add a second litter box, and I see most everyone has already mentioned that. Someone also mentioned not having too much litter in them. Very true! Cats do not like to sink up to their little ankles in the litter! Definitely scoop every day.
I am not sure if this will work, but I knew someone at one time who had to have 2 litter boxes. One for the cat to urinate in and the other to crap in. Hope this works.
I have a 7 week old kitten. The lady I got him from said he was already litter box trained. When I got him home I helped him for several days as to where the box was and for several days now he poops in the box during the day, but at night he poops on my carpet. I clean his box several times during the day and just before I go to bed. Please help me with this.
You might try putting him in a small to medium sized room at night, with a litterbox and a small nightlight. I have found cats are more careful about what they do in a small space.
My 5 month old male kitten won't poop in the litter box. He always used to use the litter box, we never had a problem. Then the past couple days he started using the litter box for pee, but not poop. His box is very clean, so that is not the issue. He normally does it when someone is home. What could I do to get him back in the habit?
By Scarlet B.
Ok, when was the last time you cleaned that litter box? You must either scoop out the clumps and poo every day. If you are using old fashion clay litter you must clean daily and do a complete dump, wash and refill with fresh clay litter once a week. If you do not clean the box once a day and everyday (clay litter or 'scooping' litter), your pet will refuse to use the box and will opt for other locations.
Cats always smell about while deciding where they will do their business. You probably hate using a chemical toilet, right? Well try having a cats more sensitive nose and having to smell a dirty litter box. Yuck.
The next time he goes outside of the litter box, get his attention and have him watch you pick up the poop and put it in the box. If he goes in the box when you're home, reward him every time with what he likes best. Remember, consistent, positive reinforcement is the key. Hope this helps!
My cat, also, hates using the litter box. I tried the shredded newspaper idea. He used it alright and every other newspaper in my house! Just make sure you put your 'good' newspaper where the kitty can't find it! :)
My friends cat hated the 'feel' of the kitty litter. So they tried cutting up newspaper and putting it in the bottom and that seemed to help. Worth a try!
I have a special needs kitten who we named TommyLynn. She will not use the litter box, even if it's fresh litter. Can someone help me? She will pee and poop on our clothes, paper, and plastic bags. Basically anything sitting in our floor.
Your vet can help you with the kitty's problem. Have her evaluated for any possible medical problems and then the vet can assist with very good suggestions for you to teach kitty good kitty behavior.
It seems to be a common question but here we go, I have two cats about 8 months old and both of them defecate outside the litter, nowhere near the trays. They use the litter to urinate only. They go outside, but come indoors to pee in the litter and poop on the floor. I have about 6 litter trays and have changed the litter type and am at a loss as to what to do. Please help!
We adopted a senior cat who was having litter issues, for a while he would use the litter to pee, but poo on the floor, anywhere but the litter box. Your kitties are a bit young for this, but our cat got better when we added pumpkin to his diet, got a water fountain, and have cat grass for him to eat. We also limit his wet food.
The person who gave him up was only feeding him dry food, it caused constipation, which was incredibly painful (meowed in pain) so he associated the litter box with pain. We bought pure canned pumpkin (Not pumpkin pie filling) and started mixing it into his wet food. It goes bad quite quickly in the fridge, so we make pumpkin cubes in a spare icecube tray. We mix 2 cubes with water, it lasts about 2 days. However you will need to start out with a small amount of just pumpkin first. We also took him off the high fiber dry food (and let his vet know), and now limit his dry food intake. His litter use isn`t perfect, but we can quickly correct when he`s had too much dry food or too many treats.
There`s a theory that carbs are not for cats, they only need meat and fat and the little bit of grain that would be in the tummies of the mice or birds that they`d hunt in the wild. Hope this helps. Caveat: litter avoidance can have a medical cause, so they do need to see a vet FIRST! (You can also ask your vet about adding a small amount of Restoralax to his wet food)
ThriftyFun is one of the longest running frugal living communities on the Internet. These are archives of older discussions.
I have two beautiful American tiger cats. Daisy uses her litter box all the time, but my male cat Sketch, only pees in the box and uses the side to finish his business. I've tried 2 litter boxes, citrus scents, everything! But he won't use the litter box to poop. Please help.
By rosiet from CT
We've used citrus scents in our home to repel our cats from areas we don't want them. I don't know if that's why yours doesn't like the litter box or not. Cats are so finicky! I love mine, but they both get finicky about their litter box as well as other things. We have to keep ours quite clean or they retaliate and use the floor. Good luck! (06/03/2009)
Some cats are very picky. You may actually need to get 3 boxes. Males can be the hardest, especially when they are paired up with a female. Some cats like to pee in one and poo in the other. Some cats will not go in a box that the opposite sex has gone in. In which case your cat may have both issues. Put two boxes next to each other in one spot and one box in another spot. Make sure the litter is always clean and you should place the boxes in a safe place where there isn't any traffic or anything that will scare them.
Good luck! (06/03/2009)
They sell a litter called P-Pod, which is made from pea-pods and has a natural mint scent which is supposed to draw cats to the litter box because mint is in the catnip family. They also make a catnip spray you can spray on your litter. Also, there are many lavender scented litters on the market, one being "VetBasis" that are supposed to calm and mellow a cat. The 2 litters I mentioned above are natural composting litters (only as mulch for flowers, not for growing veggies). VetBasis is made of corn and as I said P-Pod is made of just that, peas. I use a litter called "Cat Country Elite" that's made from wheatgrass and is the absolute best in neutralizing odor (I live in a very small trailer and no odor from the cat box!) it's because of the chlorophyll in the wheatgrass.
My cat occasionally poops outside of his box too, this is because when he squats, his rear-end hangs over the catbox. It's not on purpose though. Could this be the problem? Or is he actually stepping out of the litter box to poop? I put contact paper over cardboard and placed this under his box for when his butt hangs over and he misses. It helps in clean up. You could also use a folded garbage bag or cut a shower curtain from the dollar store into 4 or 6 pieces for easy disposal.
Another suggestion would be to use several litters at once as a test. A different litter in each of 3 boxes. Use 3 different textures and types and see which one he prefers. For example, the crystal kind, a natural (maybe wheat based) litter and a regular clay based or clumping litter.
I also agree with what SusLuvsVintage said about some males not wanting to share a box with a female. As you most likely already know about the "catbox rule" of having 1 box for each cat then an additional one. This means if someone has 4 cats, they'd need 5 boxes, etc. So you need 3 litterboxes because you have 2 cats. I agree with SusLuvsVintage, she gave you some very good info. I also agree with Kizzybear, citrus is only supposed to be used where you "don't" want a cat to go, like near or on a Christmas tree or on a houseplant or shelves full of knickknacks, etc. Also, I'm sure you know to clean the box daily, or even twice a day if need be.
As a last idea, if your male cat is stressed out, you may want to try a product called "Bach Flower Remedies - Rescue Remedy". This is sold in pet stores (for pets) and in health food stores (for humans). Either one will work. It's great for mellowing an animal before going on a trip (plane, train or car) or to the vet. My mom's vet recommended it before her cat got his daily IV and before that when they moved their cats from Seattle to Dallas. There's absolutely no side effects and it really works!
My cat changed his litter box habits after he got into a fight with a much bigger cat. He started peeing on any plastic or paper bag I left on the kitchen floor after shopping. I finally broke down and got a litterbox for my kitchen. I figured having a box in my kitchen was better than him peeing in or on bags on the floor. He used that box for a few months then went back to using his regular box and also goes outside during the daytime. The good thing is that ever since that fight, he sticks very close to home and usually stays on the front porch (watching the birds) where I can keep an eye on him. The strange thing about your cat is that cats may pee in other places, but they almost never poop where they can't bury it (in litter). I sure hope you find something that works to stop this bad habit! (06/03/2009)
Try two litter boxes with two types of litter. Some cats don't like scoopable, some don't like clay, and some don't care. (06/03/2009)
I have two inside cats one male 9 years old and one female 2 years old. I have four litter trays as the old male cat is extremely fussy and won't use the tray if it has been used. I also change the litter regularly and clean out the pee and poop often throughout the day. (06/06/2009)
I agree with the other posters that sometimes an added box can help; unscented litter is preferred by most kitties; they dislike citrus scents.
I have several female cats and one male. I have noticed or should say I've seen it happen that the male cat has poor aim. He squats to do his thing and typically it is over the edge of the box. But I watch him settle in to the box and move around, it's not intentional.
My solution was to purchase a different type litter box. Over the years the following has worked well with my boy: the round Boda dome box, but I honestly know they don't like the covered boxes, they did use it; I have also tried a covered box with high sides and tossed the top; I recently purchased a high sided box with a low front at Petsmart which is great because my boy is a bit older now so he can get in do his thing and no accidents!
Since it's poop you can also try either laying newspaper around the box so its easy to gather and toss or a cardboard box/old flat pan to catch the accidents. With the high sided boxes, so far he hasn't had another accident.
It takes patience and time. Remember mild soap to clean boxes; replace boxes when they get to scratched up at bottom (once a year) and use unscented litter. Good luck! (06/06/2009)
I use both a pee bucket (old dishpan lined with a section of newspaper) right next to wide layers of fresh newspaper for the poo. It has worked for over 20 years for my cats of all sorts. I change it daily. Good luck and God bless you and the cats He has
created. : ) (06/06/2009)
I have 5 cats and two litter boxes in my laundry room. 1 of my cats insists on pooping outside next to the box and I think it has something to do with the lumps that they feel on their paws when they stand on the litter. I noticed as soon as I clean the boxes he doesn't do it, but when they have been pooped in a couple of times he will. I clean them twice a day, but some days I can only get at them once. But I believe that's what it is. Sensitive feet, ain't that a kick in the rubber parts, but I love them all. (01/11/2010)
Should I take my kitten to the vet? She is pooping on the floor, but pees in the litter box just fine.
Lindsey from Phoenix, AZ
Put the next poop that you find right into the litter box and put the kitten in the box and let her smell the poop. Praise her and pet her while she is doing this. Be sure to clean all the previous poop deposit spots with a 1:1 vinegar and water solution.
Keep an eye on her, especially after she eats, and re-direct her if it looks like she'll be going on the floor. It'll take some vigilance, but it shouldn't take very long until she learns. Cats want to be clean and to bury their wastes. Please let us know what works. Good luck.
Nancy in FL
By Nancy from Florida
Your kitten might not like the cat litter you're using, or the litter box might not be clean enough for her. We have one cat that won't use the litter box if it isn't completely clean, so my husband cleans the boxes every day. Some cats are pickier than others when it comes to the litter box, so it may take some trial and error to figure out if it's the litter or the cleanliness of the box. (12/27/2007)
My cat urinates in one box and defecates in the other. (12/27/2007)
Try a second box, in which you have buried some of its poop. Maybe it will work?
I agree with second litter box, but also has your kitten been wormed? Perhaps number 2 is not comfortable for her. (12/28/2007)