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Old 11-13-2012, 02:29 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Desperately seeking advice

My Cat Charlee and I need your help.

Charlee has urinated twice outside of her litter box within a two week period. She has chosen my sofa to do so. She is almost 10 years old. I have taken her to her usual veterinarian for a full examination. She had urinalysis and blood tests and x-rays to check for infection and bladder stones. All tests returned "no issues" apart for a slightly elevated urine concentation level for which the vet instucted me to give her more wet/can food. Done. It should be noted that she still uses her litterbox regularly even though she made it a point to use my couch twice so far. I’ve covered the couch in plastic to avoid further damage.

History:
Charlee has done this before. 5 years ago, she was found to have bladder stones. She had been urinating on my sofa and other soft surfaces daily (which I ended up having to throw away – more on that later). It was explained to me that due to pain, she had developed a litter box aversion and sought out soft surfaces to do her business. Makes sense. Long story short, Charlee had an operation to remove the bladder stones and NEVER missed another litter box appointment. She was put on a prescription diet of Hills c/d Multicare Feline Bladder Health. She was brand new. I bought new sofas and all was fine - until now…

Today:
My couch is again ruined. It cost me $600 in vet fees and $200 to professionally clean the couch and the next day she did it again (the plastic had been off to dry from the cleaning). When this happened 5 years ago, I paid approximately $1500 in vet fees and $3000 in new furniture. Money was of course an issue, but I would have paid more. Unfortunately, times are more difficult now. HOWEVER, what would be the point of buying new furniture anyway? If the problem is behavioral, she’ll just keep doing it right?

I’m so bewildered and disappointed. I don’t know what to do. I love my cat but I know that I can’t keep doing this. It’s affecting my mood, I worry about Charlee and I’ve pretty much lost the use of my living area.

What can I do for Charlee and also is there any way to save my couch??

Last edited by Phil; 11-13-2012 at 02:32 PM.
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Old 11-13-2012, 09:45 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I wish I could help. The only things I can think of: Nothing's changed with the litter box, litter, placement, right? What if you get a second litter box and place it next to the couch? And maybe a soft litter? I think they make ones for kitties who've been declawed, and I tried Sweatscoop (I think that's the name) and I remember it being soft, like sawdust (which is why I didn't like it).
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Old 11-13-2012, 10:22 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I know you said all the tests came back fine, but it still seems to me like it may be a medical issue. Cats don't usually start to pee on the sofa all of the sudden unless they are trying to tell you something is wrong.
Has she been acting funny or different in any other way? Crouching like she may be uncomfortable, using the litter box more often, or producing smaller clumps of urine?

Giving her more canned food is a very good idea. If you want to keep her even better hydrated, you can mix water in with her food. Stress is also a contributing factor to urinary issues (and behavior issues as well). Have there been any changes that may have stressed her out? There is a product called Feliway that can help with stress or anxiety in cats that might be worth a shot. I have pretty good luck with it with my cats, although I've heard others say that it didn't have much of an effect on their cats.

As for your couch, you could try cleaning it with Nature's Miracle or another similar enzyme based cleaner. The trick with these kind of products, though, is that you really have to soak the entire area that has cat pee on it. This means pouring it on and not just spraying or wiping the surface. Anywhere the urine soaked in the cleaner has to soak in too.
I have been in the same situation, and I know how frustration that is. A former cat of mine, Monty (who now lives with my ex) once had crystals, and his way of telling us about it was to pee on not only the couch several times but also the bed. I was able to get the smell out, but it required really soaking it with Nature's Miracle, enough that the cushion needed to be put outside for a couple days to dry out.
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