Inappropriate Urination

jb12

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Joined
May 12, 2022
Messages
5
Purraise
4
Hello,
We are at our wit's end here. We adopted a British shorthair cat 3 years ago, no idea how old he is. We were told he was fully litterbox trained, but it turns out he isn't and he has destroyed two houses now with his peeing wherever he pleases. He was previously diagnosed with some kidney issues by one vet via bloodtest, but, after we moved, another tested him and told us that us putting him on a renal diet must have healed his kidneys because they are fine now (which is strange as we never had him on a renal diet as he is too fussy to eat low protein food.) We discovered that he has a long history of inappropriate urination when our current vet told us it was on his records. His current health situation is not so good - he was due to be put to sleep as he has bad arthritis in his back legs and, while Loxicom worked to remove his pain, it also made him sick. in a weird twist of fate, last Saturday the vet advised putting him to sleep (which was booked in for Monday) and gave him an injection of Loxicom to make his last couple of days pain-free. After that injection and a subsequent oral dose I gave him, he never vomited and has been on it since, pain free and holding it down.
I mention all of this to say that I know he is not urinating due to pain or an undiagnosed infection. I have tried everything to stop him peeing on our carpets. I have put down scents, but he doesn't even sniff before he pees, so he walks over to where he has been going, pees and walks off. I have put foil down, he stands on the foil and pees on the carpet to the side of it. Same thing if I block the area off. He has even walked past his litter tray and peed on one of his own beds! From what I can tell, he just stops wherever and pees before heading to his food or water. He has two massive litter trays in a quiet part of the house, near enough to him that there are no excuses for not using them. We are very close to putting him to sleep now despite him being fine on the medication as we cannot handle this stress anymore; as I said, it has been 3 years of this! Please, if anyone has any advice or past experience of this behaviour, let me know.
Thanks.
 

rubysmama

Forum Helper
Staff Member
Forum Helper
Joined
Nov 25, 2013
Messages
21,268
Purraise
50,058
Location
Canada
Hello and welcome to TCS. So sorry though for the situation that's brought you here.

I don't think you mentioned, but he is neutered, right.

Since this has been going on so long, it may not be easy to change, but if it's not a medical thing, there are some things to try.

1) change litter to Dr. Elsey’s Cat Attract® Cat Litter - the litter cats love™. Some members have found it really helps get a cat using the litter box again

2) ensure you clean everywhere he's peed with an Enzyme cleaner, so the urine smell is removed
How To Remove Cat Urine – TheCatSite Articles
How To Remove Cat Urine Odor From Your Home – TheCatSite Articles
How To Get Cat Urine Smell Out Of Carpet: Effective, Non-toxic Solutions – TheCatSite Articles

3) as a last resort, you could try stud pants.
Here's an older thread on the topic: New Stud Pants for Sprayer
 

FeebysOwner

TCS Member
Staff Member
Forum Helper
Joined
Jun 13, 2018
Messages
15,537
Purraise
20,647
Location
Central FL (Born in OH)
I can only guess this behavior is now a habit, if there isn't a medical issue that has yet to be identified. How is he otherwise? Eats/drinks well. Does he poop in the litter boxes? Does he pee on any other surfaces besides carpeting? Any other animals in the household?

You could try using puppy pee pads in a low sided cardboard box lid to test to see if he might pee on a soft surface rather than litter, especially if he pees mainly on carpeted areas. You can set up a few - perhaps even on top of his usual pee place(s), as well as ones beside his regular litterboxes, in case he doesn't want to pee and poop in the same box (yes, as weird as it is, there are cats that won't use one box for both). Even placing down pee pads over the top of his usual pee places might be another 'test', or washable rugs instead of the pee pads.

There are belly bands to use on male cats to catch urine. Most are made for dogs, but the smallest ones for dogs might just work for you cat. Do an internet search on 'belly bands for cats' and see what you find. There is also another form of 'diaper' that is supposed to only catch urine while letting the cat use a litter box for pooping - just another thing to consider.
Cat Diaper Pull-ups Allow for Defecating in Litterbox (barkertime.com)
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #4

jb12

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Joined
May 12, 2022
Messages
5
Purraise
4
Hello and welcome to TCS. So sorry though for the situation that's brought you here.

I don't think you mentioned, but he is neutered, right.

Since this has been going on so long, it may not be easy to change, but if it's not a medical thing, there are some things to try.

1) change litter to Dr. Elsey’s Cat Attract® Cat Litter - the litter cats love™. Some members have found it really helps get a cat using the litter box again

2) ensure you clean everywhere he's peed with an Enzyme cleaner, so the urine smell is removed
How To Remove Cat Urine – TheCatSite Articles
How To Remove Cat Urine Odor From Your Home – TheCatSite Articles
How To Get Cat Urine Smell Out Of Carpet: Effective, Non-toxic Solutions – TheCatSite Articles

3) as a last resort, you could try stud pants.
Here's an older thread on the topic: New Stud Pants for Sprayer
Thanks for your reply. Yes, he is neutered. He actually just peed again. He went and ate some food, walked about 3 feet over to a cupboard door and peed. After he had finished, he walked back to his water, took a drink, and went back to bed. I just cannot figure him out as I always thought cats would not pee near their food.

I will try and source the litter as I hadn't heard of anything like that before. We do clean the carpet with an enzyme cleaner, but it does not dissuade him nor does it really get the smell out. We bought some lemon cleaner for cat urine that does get the smell out, but he still pees on the clean area anyway. Ha, I actually read that first as 'stud plants'. I know for sure I would get scratched badly if I tried to put them on him!
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #5

jb12

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Joined
May 12, 2022
Messages
5
Purraise
4
I can only guess this behavior is now a habit, if there isn't a medical issue that has yet to be identified. How is he otherwise? Eats/drinks well. Does he poop in the litter boxes? Does he pee on any other surfaces besides carpeting? Any other animals in the household?

You could try using puppy pee pads in a low sided cardboard box lid to test to see if he might pee on a soft surface rather than litter, especially if he pees mainly on carpeted areas. You can set up a few - perhaps even on top of his usual pee place(s), as well as ones beside his regular litterboxes, in case he doesn't want to pee and poop in the same box (yes, as weird as it is, there are cats that won't use one box for both). Even placing down pee pads over the top of his usual pee places might be another 'test', or washable rugs instead of the pee pads.

There are belly bands to use on male cats to catch urine. Most are made for dogs, but the smallest ones for dogs might just work for you cat. Do an internet search on 'belly bands for cats' and see what you find. There is also another form of 'diaper' that is supposed to only catch urine while letting the cat use a litter box for pooping - just another thing to consider.
Cat Diaper Pull-ups Allow for Defecating in Litterbox (barkertime.com)
Yes, he is eating well now that we are managing his pain. He almost always poos in the tray. He has two massive storage boxes converted into litter trays as he does like to use separate trays for peeing and pooing. There are no other animals on the house. We have puppy pads down around his trays and I have just been forced to put one in his new pee spot as he has peed on it again, but I am sure you understand that this looks unsightly, though we just feel like the whole house is dirty now, so I don;t know how much that matters.

Thanks for all of your suggestions.
 

ArtNJ

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Jun 1, 2017
Messages
4,556
Purraise
5,204
Try one of the diaper type solutions above. It just seems unrealistic to think you'll solve this behaviorally given that its an ingrained long term behavior and the cat likely still being in pain at times despite the meds. If it was a younger healtheir cat, it might be worth giving a behavioral fix a go, but I think at this point your better off with damage control.
 
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #7

jb12

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Joined
May 12, 2022
Messages
5
Purraise
4
Try one of the diaper type solutions above. It just seems unrealistic to think you'll solve this behaviorally given that its an ingrained long term behavior and the cat likely still being in pain at times despite the meds. If it was a younger healtheir cat, it might be worth giving a behavioral fix a go, but I think at this point your better off with damage control.
Would there not be an issue putting the nappy on him when his back legs and hips are arthritic? Do you have to change them every urination because he pees over 10 times a day.
 

ArtNJ

TCS Member
Top Cat
Joined
Jun 1, 2017
Messages
4,556
Purraise
5,204
Would there not be an issue putting the nappy on him when his back legs and hips are arthritic? Do you have to change them every urination because he pees over 10 times a day.
I can't answer the first part of that, but as to the second I have some experience because my mom with dementia refuses diaper changes except the one in the morning and at night (because she knows she would have an unwinnable war on those). Well, assuming it shouldn't be too different for cats??? Anyway, to the extent its helpful, here is my painfully acquired learning. Basically, as long as poop isn't affected, with pee a lot depends on the quality of the diaper and how much pee is against flesh for how long. For incontinent humans that can't self report, 6-8 diaper changes a day are recommended -- one every 2-3 hours basically. However, with a good diaper, my mom has basically been on 2 diaper changes a day (plus extras for poop) for 4 months or so with no infections. I freaked out about it at first, and certainly wouldn't recommend that but its just not caused the expected problems. The changes at night and in the morning are the most important. Not exactly sure how that translates to a cat, but I think they key takeaway is a lot depends on how good the diaper is, and you may have to see how it works in practice, but no, you don't need an immediate change every time the cat pees.
 

FeebysOwner

TCS Member
Staff Member
Forum Helper
Joined
Jun 13, 2018
Messages
15,537
Purraise
20,647
Location
Central FL (Born in OH)
Can't address the barkertime diapers that I gave a link to above, but my sister's dog has to wear diapers and she works a full-time job - and he pees a lot - so I know she isn't able to change him during most of the day. She does let him run around sans diaper for a while in the evening so that he gets 'aired out' after a cleaning. Again, not related to the barkertime ones, I think you can get super thick absorbent pads to help out.
 

sunny578

Mom to an inappropriate urinator
Alpha Cat
Joined
Apr 25, 2017
Messages
324
Purraise
250
Hello! I'm sorry to hear you are having such a hard time:( My cat did this for years as well, although she was young and healthy when it all started.

Does your cat ever urinate in the litter box?

I would first suggest temporarily confining him to an area filled with litter boxes. Depending on your space, this could be a bathroom or a laundry room. It could also be a spare bedroom, but this can get a little dicey if there is carpet/furniture in there.

How much does his arthritis affect his gate & mobility? If he was scheduled to be put to sleep, I'm guessing a lot? Does he have a preferred surface to urinate on?

I would really encourage you not to euthanize for inappropriate urination. Depending on where you live, a rescue could help re-home him. I actually have a cat with fairly severe mobility issues in my basement. Her owners brought her to the local shelter to be euthanized, but I live in an area with a city shelter that has a really good foster program, and they sent her to me. Cats can and do form better litter box habits in new environments.

If you want to try confinement, let me know and I can walk you through the process and the next steps. I am somewhat of an (unfortunate) expert in the topic of illegal urinating and I'm sure I can help!

Please keep us posted!!
 

sunny578

Mom to an inappropriate urinator
Alpha Cat
Joined
Apr 25, 2017
Messages
324
Purraise
250
Thanks for your reply. Yes, he is neutered. He actually just peed again. He went and ate some food, walked about 3 feet over to a cupboard door and peed. After he had finished, he walked back to his water, took a drink, and went back to bed. I just cannot figure him out as I always thought cats would not pee near their food.

I will try and source the litter as I hadn't heard of anything like that before. We do clean the carpet with an enzyme cleaner, but it does not dissuade him nor does it really get the smell out. We bought some lemon cleaner for cat urine that does get the smell out, but he still pees on the clean area anyway. Ha, I actually read that first as 'stud plants'. I know for sure I would get scratched badly if I tried to put them on him!
My cat also urinated by her food, no problem. She urinated right by her food, on her bed, on me. . .

I never found that enzymatic cleaners got rid of the smell of my cat's urine. Letting baking soda hang out on the spot for a bit and then pouring vinegar on top always worked better for me.
 
Last edited:
  • Thread Starter Thread Starter
  • #12

jb12

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Joined
May 12, 2022
Messages
5
Purraise
4
Hello! I'm sorry to hear you are having such a hard time:( My cat did this for years as well, although she was young and healthy when it all started.

Does your cat ever urinate in the litter box?

I would first suggest temporarily confining him to an area filled with litter boxes. Depending on your space, this could be a bathroom or a laundry room. It could also be a spare bedroom, but this can get a little dicey if there is carpet/furniture in there.

How much does his arthritis affect his gate & mobility? If he was scheduled to be put to sleep, I'm guessing a lot? Does he have a preferred surface to urinate on?

I would really encourage you not to euthanize for inappropriate urination. Depending on where you live, a rescue could help re-home him. I actually have a cat with fairly severe mobility issues in my basement. Her owners brought her to the local shelter to be euthanized, but I live in an area with a city shelter that has a really good foster program, and they sent her to me. Cats can and do form better litter box habits in new environments.

If you want to try confinement, let me know and I can walk you through the process and the next steps. I am somewhat of an (unfortunate) expert in the topic of illegal urinating and I'm sure I can help!

Please keep us posted!!
Hi, thanks for your concern.

The arthritis was affecting his mobility quite badly and obviously that was affecting his toilet habits. However, since the pain medication, he has been fine - still slow to get up and down, but he is showing no signs of pain and lies sprawled out, which he wasn't doing when sore. He prefers to urinate anywhere, there really is no pattern! He will go in the tray, next to the tray on a puppy pad, next to the puppy pad on a lino floor, which is unfortunate, but definitely manageable for us. The issue is when he goes on the carpet, and then he will go next to his food, down the hall, and worse, he has started peeing at the entrance of the living room.

I will try confinement if this special litter does not work. The immediate obstacle for that is we have nowhere to put him as he has already been going into the spare room to pee, so is banned from there and our bathroom and kitchen are quite small (we live in a house with a disproportionate room/utility room ratio, so the only realistic places are the bedrooms or the living room, all of which he has peed in now.)

I don't think we will put him down because of this as I don't believe that it is right, but it is souring what should have been a great time with him earning himself a reprieve. Thanks again.
 

sunny578

Mom to an inappropriate urinator
Alpha Cat
Joined
Apr 25, 2017
Messages
324
Purraise
250
Yeah!! If pain is what has sent a cat out of the box, even once the pain has been resolved, the illegal urinating can become a habit that is hard to break.

I would guess the special litter might help a bit, but probably will not be your only solution since the illegal urinating has really taken hold.

Not sure if you have a bed in your spare room, but if you do decide to temporarily confine him, you would essentially want to cover the space with litter boxes to really really encourage him to use the box. You could use couple of shower curtains or tarps to protect the carpet or furniture. This litter box is really great for cats with mobility issues who might find that lifting their leg to step into a box is not worth the effort. It is quite expensive for what it is, but my cats will not use a homemade solution:

KITTYGOHERE Senior Cat Litter Box, Sand, Large - Chewy.com

But when retraining a cat to use a box you really want to go overboard with the boxes, so I'd probably get this one and then a bunch of really cheap boxes from the pet store.

With temporary confinement, your goal would be to get your cat to use the box 100% of the time. Then, when that happens, you would very slowly let the cat back out to the rest of your home. If, though, when confined to the spare room with a million boxes, your cat doesn't use the box, the next step would be to confine your cat to a smaller location. My cat was so litter box adverse, I actually had to confine her to a crate to get her to start using the box again. But, when she was at this point, she wasn't using the litter box at all. When confined to our bathroom filled with litter boxes, she actually chose to urinate on her food bowl instead of the litter box.

If confinement doesn't seem like something you can/want to do just yet, you could try overdoing the litter boxes in the whole house. I'd shoot for at least one in every room. None of these would be permanent solutions--just an initial step to get him back to using his box 100% of the time.

Good luck, and please keep us posted!
 
Top