|Purred: Thu Feb 11, '10 1:53pm PST |
|Please ignore my last optimistic post - Mocha is STILL playing with her poo, and it's becoming more and more frequent! It's getting very frustrating for us! I just wanted to clarify that Mocha’s not doing the actual business outside the litter box. She is going inside the box, and then taking it out. (Sorry for the mental image…)
Mocha and Smokey has TONS of toys, all over the house in every room they go to. They are in all shapes and sizes - balls, little mice, etc. I also just bought them a cat tree that has multiple levels, sisal posts, and dangling toys. In short, I've provided them with lots of things other than poop to play with. Smokey has no problems at all, but Mocha from early on has shown to associate poop as a toy for some reason!
I've started to scoop every day but last night just before I was about to scoop I found out that it was too late - she took TWO pieces of poop out. I disciplined her on the spot - she knew she was in trouble! But this morning she took another piece out! This habit is very difficult to tolerate as it is extremely unsanitary. She is barely 4 months old, is there no hope until she’s an adult?
Previously I've just cleaned up her messes, but now that she's been leaving poop on the floor almost every day, I need to rid that bad habit once and for all. Firstly, she doesn't actually go outside the litter box, so I don’t believe it’s a health issue. She’s had her shots and fecal sample tested recently so she’s fine. She’s a good girl with using the litter boxes - the problem is that after she goes, she takes the poop out of the box to play/eat as a toy. I’ve caught her in the act, so I can confirm that it’s what she’s been doing.
I have a good sized litter box with fairly high walls (CatIt brand), and a slightly smaller one. Both are hooded, with doors. I know there are automatic litter boxes like Scoop Free, but I’m iffy about automatic boxes because there are always problems associated with them, so I’d like to stick with my boxes for now. Unfortunately, since we work fulltime and do not come home till fairly late, it’s impossible to clean the litter box as soon as she goes…there’s always ammo!
Now I love Mocha and realize it takes hard work on both sides to keep everyone happy, including Mocha herself who doesn’t know any better, and my hubby who is mucho grossed out by the “presents”. I’ve done a lot of reading and I know I’m not the only one with this problem. However I’m hoping for some advice beyond “she’ll grow out of it” or “get her more toys,” because having cat feces on the floor every day is much less than ideal, and she already has lots of toys.
Our plan is tough love – whenever we catch her leaving poop out, we will bring her to the poop and discipline her. (Maybe we should spray water?) Our hope is that she will realize that bringing poop out from where it belongs will result in punishment. If she has a good day (no “presents”) we will reward her with treats. Do people think I’m on the right path? Does anyone have other experiences to share? Sorry for the long post, I just needed to vent some frustrations as a first-time cat owner! Thanks in advance!
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