It’s been a long time since I’ve talked about Puck’s peeing and pooping problem, probably because I have nothing new to report. Actually, I can talk about more ways that I have failed to stop it.
I believe my last report mentioned that we had started Puck on Prozac. I can tell you that wasn’t easy. Even though it was only half of a very tiny pill, when I ground it up and put it in his food he knew it was there and he wouldn’t eat his food.
I tried putting it in tuna and that worked better than cat food but I can’t feed the cats tuna every day. Even in tuna, he would only eat about half of the small amount that I put in his bowl. I went to the pet store and I bought a variety of different types of wet cat food. I tried to pick the ones that seemed juicy and flavorful. Some worked better than others but none of them worked very well at all.
Some commenters mentioned that I could get his prescription compounded into a flavor like tuna. I looked into that and found a compounder near me called Bay Life Pharmacy. They had two options, chicken or tuna. I picked the chicken because I thought it would blend better with the chicken cat food that I’ve been giving them. It cost about $45 and they shipped it directly to my house. It arrived fairly quickly after that, perhaps one or two days later.
It came with a syringe and I put the required amount in the syringe and squirted it on puck’s cat food and mixed it in. I was convinced that this was going to work but when I put his food in front of him he wouldn’t eat it. He just went over to somebody else’s bowl and took their food.
I struggled for weeks trying to get him to eat his food with the medicine in it. I think I was averaging a half a dose a day. Shortly before Hurricane Irma hit, I reordered his medication, but this time I chose the tuna flavor. I still had more in the first bottle but I had mostly given up trying to give it to him. I could have just forced it in his mouth but causing anxiety by giving an antianxiety medicine seemed counterproductive.
While we were away during our evacuation, Puck used the litterbox. When we returned home, Puck forgot how to use the litterbox again. Because of that, we decided to try to be more diligent about getting the medicine in him. That meant we had to force it in his mouth since the tuna worked no better than the chicken flavor. I feel bad doing that. I gave Frankie a piece of cheese yesterday and tried to give Puck a piece but he ran away and hid under a chair. Not the desired result I was looking for.
Another approach I have considered is the litterbox. I already mentioned that I tried adding a box and I tried putting a box in various different places around the house. I also tried a couple of different litters as well as just cleaning the boxes very well. I also tried putting out a box with a pee pad instead of litter, which was suggested by one commenter. Nothing worked.
One day I saw Puck investigate one of the boxes. He put his paw in it and then ran away like he just stepped on hot lava. Shortly after that, I saw him about to poop so I picked him up and put him in the box. He quickly finished pooping and then jumped out of the box and ran like a cat out of hell. That got me thinking that maybe he didn’t like the texture of the litter.
Another thing I noticed was that he tended to pee behind Rose’s chair, or under her desk or under my desk. He also peed under the kitchen table. Sometimes he would pee or poop out in the open but often the place was somewhat hidden. That prompted me to do something I recommended against in my post, Litter Boxes Are For Cats. I bought a box with a cover. I still don’t recommend it but sometimes when everything logical fails you have to try the illogical.
I needed to find a large box because a small box with a cover was too confining. I found a very large corner litter box at one of the big pet stores but didn’t want to spend $38 for another box that could fail. Instead, I looked on Amazon and found it for $18 with free shipping. It’s called Nature’s Miracle Advanced Hooded Corner Litter Box and since I purchased it the price went up to over $54. I guess I bought it at the right time.
I also bought a litter called Dr. Elsey’s Kitten Attract Cat Litter. This litter was supposed to be soft enough for a kitten’s paws so I thought if Puck was having sensitivity issues, this litter might help. I paid a little more through Amazon but I was having trouble finding it locally.
The litter box was already popular before I even opened the carton.
It was even more popular after I took it out of the carton.
Of course, the carton had its own appeal.
I set the box up behind Rose’s chair.
For some reason, as soon as new litter is put in a box, the nearest cat suddenly has to pee. I didn’t even have time to put the cover on.
Chris liked the cover for another reason.
All in all, the box worked surprisingly well for a box with a cover on it. Three out of our four cats used it almost exclusively. The fourth cat still preferred the floor. Eventually, after determining that Puck was not going to use the new box with the special litter, I moved it out to the cats’ room where it continues, to this day, to get used more than the other boxes. I don’t know what the appeal is. I have since changed the litter back to our normal litter. Maybe they like the cover. I don’t think so though because the front opening is so large that the box offers no concealment.
Perhaps they just like the large triangular shape. That makes me wonder what Puck has against it.
I also tried confining Puck to our bedroom. The other day I cleaned a box and put new litter in it, My concern is that Chris and Frankie “mark” the boxes and I didn’t want that to keep Puck out of the box. I then closed him in the room while Rose and I were at work. When I checked on him ten hours later, the room was clean but the box was untouched. Not long after I let him out, he pooped on the floor on the patio.
There are times when he goes a day or two without peeing or pooping anywhere. I never see him use the box during that time so I don’t know if he is holding it for that long. I think he doesn’t drink enough water, which is why he has bladder issues, so I suppose it is possible to hold it for a fair amount of time but two days seems too long.
I have compiled a list of everything that has worked and not worked to help solve Puck’s litter box issues.
First, here is everything that failed to help:
- Different types of litter
- Additional litter boxes
- Different location of litter boxes
- Litter attractent
- Covered box
- Feliway diffuser
- Calming collar
- Spray deterrent
Here is what worked:
- Hurricane evacuation
Unfortunately, the solution to Puck’s problem is not exactly sustainable.