HELP! Neutered Cat Spraying - Cat Forum : Cat Discussion Forums
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post #1 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-04-2017, 02:28 PM Thread Starter
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Unhappy HELP! Neutered Cat Spraying

So, I am at my wits end and need help! I rescued a semi-feral about a year and a half ago. I fed him for several months in my yard, then brought him in last winter. I kept him confined to a room for awhile until he adapted, and I had him neutered and tested.. He is FIV positive, with no signs of illness.

He's a super chill cat and enjoys the indoor life. I'm a rescuer, so I have multiple cats. He gets along well with most of my other cats with no aggression, and they are even playful with each other. One of my males does not like him, and there's some growling when they confront each other, but that's as far as it goes.

The vet estimates him to be about 4-5 years old. Prior to having him neutered, and for at least the first year he was with me he never sprayed. Then about 6 months ago.. the spraying started. I took him to the vet and he tested positive for urinary crystals and was put on a special diet and retested, and the issue was resolved. But the spraying has not stopped.

He sprays my walls, my blinds, my windows, my doors, etc. Ugh! He sprays multiple times per day.. I am constantly scrubbing something. His spray has no scent since he's neutered, but it's nasty and needs to stop. I've tried the plugin diffusers, Nature's Miracle, etc etc. Nothing works to make him stop.

I have run out of patience. The vet prescribed him Prozac because he said there must be some underlying stress issues causing the spraying, since there's no medical reason. I am not a fan of drugging cats, but at this point.. I need to do something. But, he won't even take the meds. He won't eat pill pockets.. if I crush it in his food he can smell it and walks away. I've even tried tuna and chicken, and he still won't take the meds. I really don't know what else to do.

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-04-2017, 04:46 PM
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I'm by no means an expert, but I say it's due to new cats coming in AND the male that he doesn't get along with. Cats don't do the best with change. Hope you figure it out though!
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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-05-2017, 10:08 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your response! Most of the new ones that come in are bottle baby kittens, and he actually grooms and plays with them. The male he doesn't get along with stays upstairs for the most part, and Gus (the sprayer) stays downstairs... so they really don't come in contact too often. Gus is super playful for his age, and really seems to enjoy life.. he does not appear to be stressed at all. So I really don't get it, unless it's just simply "marking his territory".

Either way, it needs to stop. I can't take much more.. its an all day, every day thing. I am hoping someone else has experienced this, and has some suggestions on how to resolve it

Last edited by marie73; 09-05-2017 at 12:34 PM.
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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-05-2017, 12:09 PM
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Spraying around is nasty, that's for sure. It's most likely the antagonism of your other male to him (I"ll call him "Bully"), even though it hasn't escalated to fighting. Your "semi-feral" ("SF") is reacting by spraying to mark areas as "his territory". This is very difficult to correct if at all possible. What changed 6 mos. again to start SF spraying? Did you have "Bully" then or is he a new addition since? Do you have other feral cats wandering around near your home? Even outside cats can start an indoor cat to spray, because they can smell the outdoor cats as our houses are not air tight and cats have a very keen sense of smell. If you think it may be outside cats causing the problem, a "predator urine" (Wolf) sprayed or sprinkled around the perimeter of your yard can discourage stray cats . The only other thing would be to keep SF in another part of the house, but that may not be enough since he has developed a habit of spraying, or possibly re-homing him, or Bully. You can also try to attract him back to the litter boxes with "Dr. Elsey's Cat Attract Litter". Hope some of these suggestions are helpful. All the best!

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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2017, 11:45 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your response! I had the other cat first, so Gus the sprayer came afterwards. He doesn't really bully Gus, they just growl if they get close to each other, so they just avoid each other for the most part. One stays upstairs, the other downstairs by their own choosing.

I do have feral cats that I feed in my yard, so I can't spray outside. That's how I ended up with Gus, since I have a small yard colony I feed, he showed up here.

Nothing changed in the past 6 months.. he just started spraying out of the blue. I tried keeping him confined to a room, but he cried a howling cry 24/7 like he was being tortured. He does pee in the litterbox, but just sprays anything and everything.

Rehoming him is not possible, because no one would take a sprayer. And the other cat is also feral, and terrified of everyone but me, so rehoming him when he's not the problem would be unfair to him.

I am truly at my wits end.. this constant daily scrubbing all day long is tiresome and nasty. I just don't know what to do. I think I need to try to get the prozac into him somehow.. since I have not tried that yet. Just not sure how to get him to take it.. I can't pill him, because he bites. Ugh.

Last edited by marie73; 09-06-2017 at 02:23 PM.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-06-2017, 06:24 PM
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Is the prozac a pill? I hope a small one!

You can try covering the pill with a bit of butter, grappling Gus by the scruff. poke that buttered pill in as far as you can and hold his mouth shut. Until you see him swallow, his throat will move. If you can manage, you might try to stroke his throat with your thumb gently while holding his mouth shut. That's how I've pilled my no-pill cat. Maybe this will help you? I usually try it at feeding time, when he's already primed for swallowing. Then he gets to eat, which is like reward, maybe. It sounds rough but I didn't see much choice for my cat.

I see now you say he bites. Does he bite if you're holding him by the scruff? That often slows things down.
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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-12-2017, 11:33 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for your response! I definitely cannot pill him.. He's bit me and broke skin pretty bad before, causing me to bleed. He's a fairly gentle cat, but you can't mess with him like that or he reverts to full-on feral mode again

Last edited by marie73; 09-13-2017 at 12:38 AM.
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 09-17-2017, 12:33 AM
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I completely sympathize. I took care of a stray for several years but didn't let him inside unless the weather was very bad, or if he needed a vet visit (otherwise there was no way I was going to get him in a carrier), because my cat was terrified of him. He used the litterbox to pee the first couple of times, but then he just peed on any sort-of soft surface. I learned not to leave *anything* on the floor (including shoes and laundry hampers...). And then I realized that he was also spraying every door downstairs. Because it wasn't every day, I could deal with it - but even then it was frustrating, so I can only imagine how you feel.

I wonder if a holistic vet, one who knows traditional Chinese medicine, might have some natural supplement that would work and would be easier to give him than the Prozac? There are also things like Rescue Remedy and Homeopet's Anxiety Relief - both are drops that you add to wet food or water.

Or maybe an animal behaviorist would have some ideas?
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