Litter box issues - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 12-26-2010, 01:12 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Europe
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Litter box issues

Hi All,

I have at home 2 kittens - Eko 6 months old, which I got first and the 'new' kitten - Luna, which is about 4 months old.
When we first got Eko and introduced her to her new home everything went smoothly - once we showed her the litter box she knew straight away what to do with it. We didn't have to train her or anything.
3 months later we got Luna - sweet and cuddly Norwegian which I suppose had to be litter trained. However she seems to randomly choose whether to do her business - either in the box or ... into a tub. Which of course is easier to clean than a carpet - which she used few times on the very beginning but not 'ideal'.
I just cannot understand why one time she goes into the litter box(and we have 2 at home) and then few hours later sneaks into the bathroom I started to leave water in the tub and close the bathroom door which seems to be working for now but how do I know when or if she learned the lesson and from now on will only use the box??

Also her poops seem to be quite loose. It's like that since she arrived.
On the beginning i thought it was stress and change of the food(however Eko - our first, never had ANY stomach problems). Then I thought that maybe she had worms and used on her a paste I got from my vet - but never once saw anything suspicious. Maybe it is food but how long would it take for her to get used to what we feed her?(I'm not saving on my cats so they get SciencePlan, ProPlan, Orijen and Nutram - usually a mix of any of the above). From time to time I give them cooked meat and boiled yolk. I got her probiotics for some time and it seemed to improve things a little bit but only as long as I gave it to her. Anyway the improvement wasn't major. I'm seriously considering taking her to my vet as it's almost a month now but she seems happy otherwise, playing with Eko, chasing each other.

If anyone have any clues as what it might be I would appreciate any advices.
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 12-26-2010, 02:52 PM
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Location: Cobourg, Ontario, Canada
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She should have her stool checked by a vet. It may or may not be worms, but could be another kind of parasitic organism like giardia or coccidiosis. I think it's better to stick to one brand of food rather than mixing them up. Choose a high quality no-grain one (such as Evo, Wellness, Nature's Variety) or no-grains canned food which is even better than feeding dry exclusively. Abrupt changes from different brands or types of food can cause digestive upset and any changes should be done gradually a little at a time over several days. Hope you get kitty straightened around soon. Some kitties/cat have a more sensitive digestive system than others, and maybe Luna is one of those.

Last edited by catloverami; 12-26-2010 at 02:55 PM.
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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 12-26-2010, 06:19 PM
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I agree with the above advice on most counts. You should definitely have her stool checked for other parasites to be sure. It could be something other than worms, like giardia, which wouldn't be solved by the typical dewormers.

It could also be a grain intolerance. My second kitten had chronic soft smelly stools when I first brought her home. It continued for about 2 months, all parasite tests coming back negative. The only thing that fixed it finally was switching her to a completely grain-free diet.

The only thing I sort of disagree on is that using only one brand of food is best. For some cats this may be the case, if they are particularly sensitive to a number of different ingredients, but I personally think sticking to only one kind of food comes with potential problems: fussiness about food, boredom with getting the same food every day, lack of adaptability to different foods if you do ever switch, getting too much of or not enough of certain ingredients, and the potential for developing allergies or intolerances to specific proteins or ingredients if fed the same ones all the time.

When introducing a new food for the first time, this should be done gradually to give the cat time to get used to the new food and avoid digestive upset, but beyond that, I think rotating brands/flavors from day-to-day with wet food, or mixing multiple kinds of dry together should be just fine as long as the cat doesn't have any sensitivities to any of the ingredients in the foods you're offering. My cats are currently on a mix of 2 dry foods (although I'm switching them to just one for convenience) and get different flavors of canned (of 3 different brands) on a daily basis. The kitten with the sensitive stomach (Athena) does just fine with this as long as there's no grain in her diet.

So you definitely may want to try eliminating grain from their diet. It could be the grains in the ProPlan, Nutram, or ScienceDiet (I assume that's what you meant by science plan?) foods. Lots of expensive foods will claim to be "premium" or healthy when they really aren't. It's the ingredient label that tells the most accurate story, rather than the price tag or product claims.

I've heard good things about Orijen, so that's a good one to keep in their diet. Other quality grain-free foods are Wellness (certain flavors aren't grain-free, so check the labels), Merrick (all the Before Grain flavors are grain free, and some of the Gourmet Entrees ones are), and Blue Buffalo Wilderness (the non-wilderness varieties do contain grain), and Evo. All of these brands make grain-free dry and wet options.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 12-27-2010, 01:05 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: Europe
Posts: 6
I will definitely get her tested.
As for the food I am not sure which ones i can get in Europe - we get some of the Canadian brands and German ones but i don't think I've ever saw Wellness or Merrick
Anyway I am trying to follow the labels as I'm quite aware that kitten food should be high in protein and as you mentioned - low on grains.
Thanks for your advices!
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