Cat urinates when trying to put them in carrier - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 01:09 PM Thread Starter
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Cat urinates when trying to put them in carrier

My 12 year old tabby/white cat started doing this about a year ago. Every time I try to put her in her carrier to go to the groomers or the vet she urinates. She has peed all over me twice and now I have to hold her out away from me and carry her as quickly as possible to the carrier. Then I have to clean up the floors.

This is becoming a problem because a couple of weeks ago she showed signs of a possible urinary tract infection, but because she emptied her bladder in my attempt to get her into the carrier to go to the vet I ended up having to leave her at the vet overnight so they could get a urine sample from her. By the way it took 20 hours for her to re-fill her bladder so they could get a sample.

Now I have to take her back to the vet again because she is sneezing and snuffly and they also want to re-check her urine. I don't want to have to leave her there overnight again since I am convinced that whatever is causing the sneezing she picked up because she was kept at the vet overnight with other potentially sick cats.

Does anyone have any ideas?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 01:17 PM
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Maybe you could try luring her into the carrier instead of putting her in there? I usually put a handful of dry food at the very back of the carrier, and my cats just rush in to scarf it down. Make sure you clean the carrier thoroughly, so no pee smell from former expeditions is left inside - maybe you could use some puppy housebreaking pads in there?

Aside from trying to get her used to the carrier as not threatening, and luring her in with her favorite food, I don't really see how to calm her down, poor thing. One of my cats pees in the carrier systematically, every time the car engine starts... I guess it's just too stressful for some cats.

Good luck, and keep us posted!
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 01:27 PM Thread Starter
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Luckily she is typically finished by the time she gets to the carrier so none of the urine has made it into the carrier. I also keep her carrier lined with a towel that is cleaned after each use so she is comfortable when she does have to go in.

Unfortunately if she hears the carrier coming out she goes to hide and no amount of food or treats can lure her out of hiding. I can try again, but this trick hasn't fooled her before and she is a chow hound.

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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 01:30 PM
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You could try leaving the carrier out in your living room, door open, with a little dry food in it. Just let it sit there day after day, so she can get used to its presence and NOT get stuffed in it to go to the dreaded vet's. After a while she should fear it less, and curiosity and greed might just encourage her to go explore and retrieve the food... I know a lot of cats who overcame their fear of the carrier that way, and ended up taking naps in it (mine included).
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 02:11 PM
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So, it seems like the peeing is because she is SO freaked out. Maybe you could try this method? She won't see it coming, which may cut down on the amount of stress she experiences and maybe it'll keep her from peeing on the way to the vet. Of course, once she figures out what is going on, she may pee anyway...but it might be worth a try...

To quote myself from another post...
One handy transport method is this:
Buy 2 identically sized laundry baskets (try to make sure that the handles won't get in the way).

Get some ties ready (I use cotton string).

Lift cat place in one laundry basket.

Before cat leaps out, place the other laundry basket upside down over the other, making a cage.

Tie the two laundry baskets together using the string/ties.


I can do this alone with no help...but another person assisting would be nice. Sometimes the laundry baskets shift while I am tieing them together and I have to grapple to get them re-aligned. I also usually throw a blanket or bed in the bottom of the laundry basket to make it a little more comfortable. Be sure to either tie the strings in bows, so that you can untie at the vet or bring a little scissors and extra strings with so that you can cut them off and then apply new ones before leaving.

I agree with others though in that after this visit, you may want to bring the carrier in the house and just keep it out in the open all the time. In order to desensitize her reaction to it. After a while, maybe next time you won't have a pee problem.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 04:32 PM
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Another alternative is to find a vet that makes house calls...little more expensive, but probably worth not having to deal with the peeing.

Also, you might try giving her some Rescue Remedy a little while before trying to put her in the carrier. And spray the carrier with Feliway.

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 06:21 PM
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Originally Posted by doodlebug
Also, you might try giving her some Rescue Remedy a little while before trying to put her in the carrier.
I was going to suggest this too. Our cats pee in their carriers (because they don't like cars though, not because they don't like carriers) and they also pee when the groomers come to visit them. I just recently tried Rescue Remedy when the groomers came (haven't tried it for car rides yet) and no peeing! I can't say 100% that it was the Rescue Remedy and not a coincidence, but it's worth trying. If she lets you pick her up, before you take out the carrier maybe just give her some and see if it helps.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 11-30-2007, 10:53 PM
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I didn't have a pee-ing problem with the carriers. With one cat (Mister, rip) he would have a screaming, yowling, howling, hissing, growling fit complete with acrobatics. A scruff hold did nothing, just gave you a handle to hold him by. His mouth was making all kinds of racket and his teeth and claws were like ninjas in a fury.

It go to where we had to wrap him in a towel and stuff him in the carrier to protect ourselves. After we moved to GA, he would get curious about a carrier brought inside so I would place it on the floor and when he came near the opening, I'd open it. When he walked in, I'd quietly close it.
Eventually, he got wise to that and stopped going in.

For the last few years of his life, I would put a harness/leash on him and he did just fine.

I would recommend wrappingkitty in a towel (completely, so she can't see where she is going) and placing her in a carrier. Leave the towel with her, if she pees, the towel will soak it up.

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