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Mstansbury0704

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Oct 8, 2019
2
1
I just created this account to ask a question. My fiancé and I used to have 3 kittens I purchased from a local shelter. We then acquired a very nice elderly cat with 6 toes who we didn’t want to see go to a shelter and another young kitten that belonged to my sister in law. However the matter at hand was the 3 kittens initially there was one that constantly used the living room carpet as a place to poop. I did the rub nose in it. Smack butt. Put in litter box deal. Did this two days and new kitten then figured it out. Months go by and my fiancé picked up a very large and long shagged carpet for our daughters playroom. Now this is a hot spot for the cat poop. I’m unsure without a doubt which cat it is, however I’m pretty certain it’s the same one. I can’t break him of this habit. This habit has been going on even when We had 4 extra large litter boxes one being an extra large automatic one. We reduced it to 3 as the cats started to use the automatic one more and more(which I love by the way). However I’m getting incredibly tired of coming home to clean cat poop out of a carpet that the shag is so long I can’t even vacuum it since it stops the beater bar. Obviously it is a nightmare. Is there any type of spray cat deterrent I can use to make this room unenjoyable to be in for the cats? Im so fed up with this behavior. It doesn’t matter if you clean the boxes every 12 hours or every 6 hours. I’ve cleaned the boxes, checked the room and not even two hours later there was excrement on the rug. Also their is always a completely clean box with the automatic litter box. We used several types of litters and are currently using worlds best cat litter, so as of right now I want to just make that room like hell for whatever cat it is until they start using the litter box again.
 

susanm9006

Willow
Top Cat
Feb 20, 2011
4,165
5,683
Welcome. I would start by removing the shag rug since there may be something about the style that reminds the kitten of a litter box. Then I would scrub the floor underneath with an enzyme based cleaner, like Nature’s miracle. I would hold off replacing the rug until the litter box issue was resolved. And lastly I would replace the litter in one of the boxes with an unscented fine regular clumping litter. Worlds best is corn based and does have an odor to it that some cats dislike.

Rubbing a cat’s nose in their poop or smacking them does absolutely nothing to stop a behavior but instead makes the cat fearful so you don’t want to use these methods to discipline a cat for any reason.
 
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Mstansbury0704

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Oct 8, 2019
2
1
I think we are going to try and get rid of the rug. And I wouldn’t think it’s the litter as this problem was going on before when we had regular clay based litter. And I’ve seen every single one of the cats use the litter boxes. Even the cat in question I’ve seen uses it to pee. I think he just likes the rug more than using a box. Other than that he is a really nice people loving cat with a really pretty bicolor coat so when I say smack butt I never smack him hard enough to cause him pain. I like him too much. The only other thing I could think of is locking him in a room with a litter box and forcing him to use it.
 

FeebysOwner

TCS Member
Top Cat
Jun 13, 2018
6,983
8,618
Central FL (Born in OH)
If the only place he goes outside the litter box is that room - lock him out of that room as opposed to confining him to another room. Or, if there is no door, create a 'gate' to close off the room. Something as simple closet shelving - you can buy at home improvement stores as high/tall/long at 12 feet or more if necessary - each piece connected with zip ties to extend the length of the opening, which enables it to be easily moved out of the way (think folding doors) when needed.

You can also set up a baby cam to see which cat it actually is - although I am sure your hunch about the 'culprit' is accurate.

I don't know if the shag carpet is new or pre-owned, but something about the smell of it could have enticed the cat to use it as a litter box.

If he is still going outside the boxes in other locations, you might place puppy peed pads inside one of the boxes to see if he would use it instead - apparently something about the softness of other spots is attractive to him.
 

neely

May the purr be with you
Staff Member
Forum Helper
Dec 22, 2005
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11,775
If the only place he goes outside the litter box is that room - lock him out of that room as opposed to confining him to another room.
:yeah: That's exactly what I was going to say. Great minds think alike!

I would start by removing the shag rug since there may be something about the style that reminds the kitten of a litter box.
Ditto, that was my first thought too. :thumbsup:

Both of the above members have given you great advice. I would also like to add this Article which may be helpful regarding litter box problems:
How To Solve Litterbox Problems In Cats: The Ultimate Guide

And equally as important, an Article about avoiding punishment whether by smacking even if it's lightly or rubbing his nose into the stained area:
Cats And Discipline Don't Mix

Last but not least, I'd like to welcome you to TCS. :wave3: I'm glad you joined the site and came here for advice about your kitten. We have many caring and knowledgeable members who are more than happy to offer support. Please keep us posted on your kitten and update us on his progress. :goodluck:
 

Caspers Human

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
Feb 23, 2016
625
848
Pennsylvania
We then acquired a very nice elderly cat with 6 toes who we didn’t want to see go to a shelter and another young kitten that belonged to my sister in law.
That's a very unique cat! :)

It's called "polydactyly." Also known as a "Memingway Cat" because the famous writer, Earnest Hemingway had several six-toed, polydactyl cats.

Polydactyl cat - Wikipedia

I did the rub nose in it. Smack butt. Put in litter box deal. Did this two days and new kitten then figured it out.
That kind of training might work for dogs but it usually doesn't work for cats. What usually happens is that the cat will just do the bad behavior when the human isn't looking.

A good example is when a cat jumps up to the kitchen counter. The human will scold the cat and put her down but, later, the cat will still go up to the counter when the human isn't around. It's common for people to think that they have trained the cat to stay down but still find kitty footprints on the counter in the morning when they wake. The cat will only go up on the counter when the humans are in bed for the night.

Now this is a hot spot for the cat poop. I’m unsure without a doubt which cat it is, however I’m pretty certain it’s the same one. I can’t break him of this habit.
The most common reason for cats to go outside the litter box is because they don't feel secure in their territory.

Cats will poop and pee in a certain spot to claim it as their own. It is as if they are saying, "This place is mine!"

You seem to have enough litter boxes. The self cleaning cat box is pretty cool, too, but the cat isn't going on the floor because it can't find a litter box. She knows exactly where the litter boxes are.

She's doing it because she feels threatened or insecure, one way or another.

Can you find a way to make it so there is a place where the cat in question can have a place to call her own? Maybe a cat tree or a kitty condo? A room with a special cat shelf could also help. How about a window sill?

You will have to make sure you clean up the poop and/or the pee, really well. You'll have to destroy all of the smell. You can use a dilute solution of ammonia and water or bleach and water on hard surfaces but, on carpets or cushions, etc., you'll have to manually clean as well as you can. If you can launder the item or take it outside and wash it with a hose, that can work. Carpets that you can't pick up or upholstered furniture are a different story.

There are sprays and cleaners especially made to clean up pet stains which contain enzymes that destroy the remnants of poop or pee that leave behind a smell.

It's not, necessarily, the physical poop or pee that the offending cat cares about. It's the scent. Cats' sense of smell is really, really acute. Some say that it's even better than a dog's. They can smell things that you can't even imagine.

If a stray cat comes into your yard and pees on your front porch, your indoor cats will still smell it, almost as if it was right inside the house!

So, once a cat goes to the bathroom in one place, they will keep going back to that place to "refresh" the scent in order to tell other cats that she's still in charge.

I would say that step one is to thoroughly clean the spot where the cat peed and step two is to try to resolve the territorial issues that caused it to happen in the first place.
 

lucicat

TCS Member
Young Cat
Sep 9, 2019
38
37
Do you have enough litter boxes in enough different places? rule of thumb is 1 box for every cat plus 1. And they can't be all in one room.
Cats often pee/poop out of the litter box as a sign of stress. So I'd say you need to try and figure out how to have enough resources and spaces for the cats to keep everyone feeling confident.

sometimes the automatic boxes scare cats too. you may need to find the right style of box and litter for the problem cat.
 

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