Why is my 10-year old Persian pooping and peeing outside of her litter box? Vet has no answers. Tried everything.

My beloved 10-year old Persian started peeing/pooping on the laundry pile when we were on vacation at Xmas. It has escalated to more places around the house since then. Usually on carpeting, stairs, rugs, or anything left on the floor. (Obviously I try not to leave anything on the floor). She's been to the vet twice for this issue (no clear answers or issues found), has taken antibiotics to clear up possible infections, we clean her (5!) litter boxes 2x daily, I positioned more boxes around the house so there is always one nearby, we started introducing wet food, got her a new kitty bubbler, I'm giving her anti anxiety supplements and spraying calming kitty pheromones in frequently-used pooping places.... HELP! Next step is giving her up for adoption. I'm at my wit's end.

Asked by Member 1026678 on Mar 15th 2011 in Urine Marking & House Soiling
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Izadore (Izzie)

I'm assuming that when you went on vacation, kitty was left alone or with a sitter. At her age, she has become very much a creature of habit. Stress in her life has manifested itself by inappropriate elimination. When we moved,Delilah (7 yrs) began using my tub for a litter box. She had done this in our old house during times of upheaval, so I know it is due to stress in her case.You've also changed her diet a bit which may be causing more stools. And, in my years of animal rescue, the pheromones never worked for me.You may have to have a serious chat with your vet and impress upon them that you're considering giving her up.Prescription anti-anxiety meds may help. Try to spend more time with her. She may be trying to get your attention this way. She may feel you abandoned her particularly if she was not happy while you were gone. I must caution you that a senior cat who doesn't use the box stands little chance of being adopted especially since, in a new home, her behavior will escalate

Izadore (Izzie) answered on 3/15/11. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 2 Report this answer


It sounds like you have been more than accommodating in the litterbox department for kitty, you may even have too many (unless you have 4 cats.) There is a such thing as confusing these guys, magnificent as they are, especially at this age when they can start exhibiting signs of feline dementia. My own two kittens became so excited to see a third litterbox they forgot they had the first two and the third being MUCH smaller quickly overflowed while I was gone for the day, risking the inappropriate elimination. Just an example of potty roulette I call it. They don't even remotely have dementia.
As far as the vet, a second opinion if you can may be in order. Izzie is right about diet changes at this point and prescription anxiety meds rather than supplements. Also do some research on the Persian breed, talk to other Persian owners here on Catster. Explore all possible angles before capitulating. We are here to help with cleanup and all!

Member 1017380 answered on 3/15/11. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


My friend's Persian who was actually a bit older than 10 at the time started going outside her box and I had suggested replacing the litter with puppy pads because she seemed to be heading for a softer surface. Like maybe the litter was bothering her feet or causing discomfort for some reason. This worked for Harley and she started using the pads inside the litterbox instead of clothing or rugs. I am not sure what kind of litter you are using but since you have so many boxes to choose from, try offering her different types in one or two. World's Best, Feline Pine scoopable, Dr Elsey's Cat Attract or Long Haired formula. If yours is perfumey or dusty, try a less scented kind. It does sound like it started out at behavioral due to your vacation. But now you need to help her find her way back. Please don't give up on her. As Izzie stated, an older kitty with potty issues is not likely to find a home.

Allie answered on 3/15/11. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer