Opinions on Feliway to address Improper Elimination

GailMJ

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My 2 1/2 year old Persian has never squatted down in the box low enough to prevent her urine from going outside. My husband kept getting higher and higher sided boxes until she developed an aversion to the box. We discovered that she was using the guest beds sometimes and then realized she was also using the leather furniture in the den. For the past six months we have tried all sorts of things, ruled out UTIs, etc. We have finally gone to a very large box with clumping litter (we had non-clumping before), puppy pads underneath to catch what doesn't land in the box, and she seems much happier. However, she has always been very skittish since we got her at 12 weeks, and she is still urinating some on the furniture in the den. She does use her litter box most of the time but there are too many accidents for me to feel comfortable. I should also say that we are starting to do some redecorating and we have a new rug in the den that she is unsure about. I think that started this last round of peeing on the furniture. She peed on the recliner last Friday and soimetime between then and now on the sofa. I found a spot under the sofa this afternoon. The vet prescribed Prozac, but I am trying to avoid it if possible. I thought I would try Feliway as a last resort before Prozac. I have ordered the spray to spray on the furniture and the diffuser. What has been the experience of the users on this forum with Feliway?
 

MindyStClairesMom

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Why are you trying to avoid Prozac? Because you don't want to try to get it down her? I don't think there is a stigma with mental issues in cats these days. You may have to try several Feliway formulas: I think mine did better with the Comfort Zone (still manufactured by Feliway) than with the one called Feliway Classic. The Optimum is just the Classic + Multi, I think. I didn't notice any value that equaled the increased cost. And it takes a while. I found it was 5+ days to REALLY notice anything & then it can just be a while to get even more benefit. I buy them on eBay because it's SO much cheaper there than anywhere else. The Classic is supposed to be facial pheromones and the Multi is supposed to be mommy pheromones.
 
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GailMJ

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Why are you trying to avoid Prozac? Because you don't want to try to get it down her? I don't think there is a stigma with mental issues in cats these days. You may have to try several Feliway formulas: I think mine did better with the Comfort Zone (still manufactured by Feliway) than with the one called Feliway Classic. The Optimum is just the Classic + Multi, I think. I didn't notice any value that equaled the increased cost. And it takes a while. I found it was 5+ days to REALLY notice anything & then it can just be a while to get even more benefit. I buy them on eBay because it's SO much cheaper there than anywhere else. The Classic is supposed to be facial pheromones and the Multi is supposed to be mommy pheromones.
 
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GailMJ

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I am trying to avoid Prozac because of the difficulty administering it, the fear that she will avoid me at all costs when she associates me with the medicine , and finding a cat sitter who will be able to give it to her when we are on vacation.
 

sunny578

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I'm sorry you are dealing with this! It is so hard :(

In my experience, pheromones can help out, but they probably won't permanently solve the problem, or be the only solution you need.

It sounds like she is mostly doing well, but when she has an accident it's only somewhere in the den?

Wondering if she has multiple litter boxes, and if any are in the den right now.

Also wondering about your usage of this room. Is this your main family space where you hang out frequently, or a less used room? Does your cat have her own things in the den--cat trees, toys, beds, etc?

My cat urinated everywhere when she was going through her rough time, but her main spot was our bed. She too is a very skittish cat, and I wasn't convinced that she would even go near a cat tree let alone spend time in one, but putting one right by our bed was one key piece to solving her inappropriate urinating.

Not sure if you have any other pets or kids, but another key piece for Tiny was gating off a bedroom for her to retreat to as needed. This is where her main litter box is, and we have one of those baby gates that only allows cats through so when she wants to be alone, she won't have any kids or dogs in her space.

Wondering also about her diet and water intake. My cat was on a dry food only diet when she was in a bad place, and her vet thought that this might be irritating her bladder. Placing a variety of water bowls/cups for her around the house can help up her water intake and maybe make urinating more comfortable (even though she is cleared of UTIs.) Now Tiny eats only raw, and one benefit of this is that it really has reduced the amount of urine that she produces.

In addition to adding a cat tree and a litter box to the den, you might also think about creating some more positive associations with the space. Putting out cat nip and some of her toys and making an effort to spend some time playing with her in that room can help her redefine the space, and when that happens, she will be less likely to urinate in it. You could also feed her a meal in there from time to time, or leave out treats for her to discover. Nervous cats spread their scent through urine, but another way for them to do this is by scratching, so giving her lots of things to scratch in that room could also help.

You also might want to rethink where your litter box is located. I would def add one in the den if there isn't one already there, and maybe a couple of others around your house, depending on how big the space is. Tiny urinated outside of the box I think sometimes to spread her scent, but also sometimes because she was just too nervous to take herself to her box and had to go and why not on the couch/bed/floor where she already was?

I have so (too) much experience with this, so please feel free to reach out if you want some more ideas! Keep us updated!
 

LTS3

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I am trying to avoid Prozac because of the difficulty administering it, the fear that she will avoid me at all costs when she associates me with the medicine , and finding a cat sitter who will be able to give it to her when we are on vacation.

Pills can be given using Pill Pockets / pilling dough and other methods:

Pilling Cats: Must-know Tips For Hiding Pills – TheCatSite Articles
The Best Pill-taking Secret I Know...
Pilling Cats and Dogs Safely
How We Give Our Pill Hating Cat A Pill
Getting Cat To Take Pills... Post Tips Here.

Liquids may be hidden in yummy cat food or some canned tuna in water. Some liquid medicines can be compounded to add a pet friendly flavor such as chicken or bacon.

The Prozac may also be compounded into another form such as a transdermal gel you apply to the inside of the ear with a cotton swab or as a flavored chew treat. Wedgewood Pharmacy lists these options: Fluoxetine Medication & Information for Animals Other online pet pharmacies such as Chewy.com may also have similar compounding options. A local compounding pharmacy can also make compounded medicines for pets. A prescription from the vet is needed to have a medicine compounded.
 

Eonblue

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It's not as hard as you think to give prozac. My cat was prescribed for aggression and I got tuna flavored stuff from chewy.com at 4mg per half ML , which is a tiny amount of liquid. I give it to my cat daily in the morning and I'll rarely mix it in her food but I can just slip the oral syringe in her mouth and not even have to hold her squirt it in and I'm not gonna say she loves the flavor but it dosent make her froth up like the non flavored stuff did. Give her some treats and some pets afterwards and it's never become an issue. For example I gave her it 2 hours ago and shes laying on top of me as I type this. Its suppose to work extremely well for the problem your having. The half life of prozac Is so long it's ok to miss a dose and they wont experience any of the typical withdrawls of SSRIs. The "reviews" I've read say it works so well for the issues your having you can start them and taper them off in just a couple months and its solved so it wont be a long term thing.
 

Eonblue

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As far as feliway, I tried all of their formulas and sprays and it was a complete waste of money for what I was dealing with.
 

Tobermory

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Feliway is one of those products that either works for your cat or it doesn’t. Some cats are simply immune to it just as some cats are immune to catnip. Personally, I’ve used the diffusers for calming, which have helped my cats, and I’ve also used the multi-cat diffusers for aggression, which have also worked. And I’ve used the spray to keep one of my cats from scratching where she shouldn’t, and that has worked beautifully. I haven’t tried any of them for peeing outside the box, so unfortunately, I can’t help there. But I would try the Feliway Classic in the diffuser for your cat’s general peace of mind and then use the spray to mist the areas where she’s peeing to discourage that behavior. It’s worth trying!
 

tarasgirl06

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My 2 1/2 year old Persian has never squatted down in the box low enough to prevent her urine from going outside. My husband kept getting higher and higher sided boxes until she developed an aversion to the box. We discovered that she was using the guest beds sometimes and then realized she was also using the leather furniture in the den. For the past six months we have tried all sorts of things, ruled out UTIs, etc. We have finally gone to a very large box with clumping litter (we had non-clumping before), puppy pads underneath to catch what doesn't land in the box, and she seems much happier. However, she has always been very skittish since we got her at 12 weeks, and she is still urinating some on the furniture in the den. She does use her litter box most of the time but there are too many accidents for me to feel comfortable. I should also say that we are starting to do some redecorating and we have a new rug in the den that she is unsure about. I think that started this last round of peeing on the furniture. She peed on the recliner last Friday and soimetime between then and now on the sofa. I found a spot under the sofa this afternoon. The vet prescribed Prozac, but I am trying to avoid it if possible. I thought I would try Feliway as a last resort before Prozac. I have ordered the spray to spray on the furniture and the diffuser. What has been the experience of the users on this forum with Feliway?
Hello G GailMJ and family and welcome to TCS! I do hope your little girl will be reassured. Though I have not used feliway for that specific purpose, I have used the spray for years and it has been very helpful in reassuring our feline family members through a very traumatic period when I was being divorced and because of city quotas and limited space, I could not bring everyone with me to our present location. I had to airlift internationally, and sprayed the foam used to line each carrier with feliway. They made the 100-mile journey to the airport, part of it over sand and boulder unpaved roads, with not a peep, were calm-appearing at the airport, and arrived just fine. Our wonderful vet did not push tranquillizers, which along with other drugs can be dangerous and which do have side effects, so feliway was the only thing I used. If that's not a testimony to the ability of the product to keep cats calm, IDK what is! so yes, I would definitely recommend it. I have never used the plug-ins as I don't care for that form. The spray is all I've used.
A couple of questions. Cats are very sensitive and their sense of hearing is much more keen than ours. Is your environment calm and serene? Are there any other animals in your household? Do you have guests/visitors? And is your cat's box in a quiet, low-traffic area where she does not feel threatened or encroached upon? Cats love pattern ("habit") and many do not like noisy environments/lots of people or others around.
For those "accident" areas, it is important to remove all of the spill so she does not smell it and re-mark. I've used Nature's Miracle-Just For Cats for years and used according to directions, it is very effective. It is natural and harmless as well. You can get it online or at most "pet" supply stores.
Thank you for trying everything before resorting to drugs! and I hope you are able to solve your little girl's problem without having to give her Prozac.
 

Meowmee

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My 2 1/2 year old Persian has never squatted down in the box low enough to prevent her urine from going outside. My husband kept getting higher and higher sided boxes until she developed an aversion to the box. We discovered that she was using the guest beds sometimes and then realized she was also using the leather furniture in the den. For the past six months we have tried all sorts of things, ruled out UTIs, etc. We have finally gone to a very large box with clumping litter (we had non-clumping before), puppy pads underneath to catch what doesn't land in the box, and she seems much happier. However, she has always been very skittish since we got her at 12 weeks, and she is still urinating some on the furniture in the den. She does use her litter box most of the time but there are too many accidents for me to feel comfortable. I should also say that we are starting to do some redecorating and we have a new rug in the den that she is unsure about. I think that started this last round of peeing on the furniture. She peed on the recliner last Friday and soimetime between then and now on the sofa. I found a spot under the sofa this afternoon. The vet prescribed Prozac, but I am trying to avoid it if possible. I thought I would try Feliway as a last resort before Prozac. I have ordered the spray to spray on the furniture and the diffuser. What has been the experience of the users on this forum with Feliway?
So sorry you are going through this. My Sybil had similar issues for most her of life. I tried numerous things including feliway. It didn't help though. But I would try it just in case it may help you. If you have asthma the diffusers are not good and just keep an eye on them becaue some people said they melted due to electrical issues.
Sybil’s issue were determined to be part IC and part behavioral. We tired leavil which helped a bit. And switched to wet food only. A dvm said wet food helps ic cats due to the water. Throw away any peed on items. Scoe is the only odor eliminator that really worked, plus oxi clean for things that can be washed. Cover furniture with washable waterproof pads or wee pads. Eventually I put wee pads in stainless steel litter pans wherever she went. And she had her own box in her room as well. Scoopable litter is a must. If you haven’t, get her a full evaluation with a specialist as well to rule out any other medical causes. The cat genie is a self cleaning toilet essentially that might help to because it keeps itself super clean. It can be hooked up to a toilet or two the pipe under the sink.
I would def try any meds as well. 😀
 
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