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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone:

I am a newbie & I am now in a very difficult situation. Those who have experiences with spraying cats, pls help me! This post might be a bit long but I want to be clear so catlovers with relevant experience could chime in.


In Dec last yr someone threatened to euthanise his two white adult cats if nobody wanted them. I took in the two white cats because I gave them to him as kittens which I picked up off the street in mid-2005. Pls do not laugh. I had no knowledge about the proper introduction of cats. My two resident cats, Baby & Felicity, were tame & so were the two newcomers. All four had free run of my shoebox apt. Eventually I knew they were stressful because they became destructive & every morning I woke up to a warzone. I also knew 4 cats in a shoebox apt meant trouble but was unable to rehome the newcomers. Then one early morning in Feb I heard Baby screaming while being chased. I DID NOT intervene because I knew for certain nobody would be harmed physically. I woke up to find a limp Baby but I simply thought she was just scared stiff. She didn't have wounds or anything. I put her in a safe place & promptly got out to lunch & thought no more of it. I came home in the evening to find Baby in her own pool of urine & immeidately brought her to a 24hr animal clinic. It was too late. Baby had a stroke & died a few days later. She was relatively young at 13.

I am no spring chicken myself & have recently retired. But the image of her turning from a cat to a pile of bones upon cremation is an image that will be forever etched in my memory. I had sacrificed Baby to save the two new white cats.

Since Baby went to hospital, Felicity has been spraying & crying day & nite. I tried Feliway but found it effective only on the two white cats. But I am still hoping as it is still early days. My vet suggested spaying Felicity as well as the unspayed new female cat. But there is no guarantee that the spraying would stop because it has been over a month since the spraying appeared & it might have been ingrained to become a habit.

I am now remorse-filled since Baby should have been still around had I just got out of bed to intervene the catchase. So now I have decided to pull out all the stops to save Felicity. I have been spending more time with the cats. I have the Feliway diffuser on. The two unspayed females will be spayed next week. Fortunately it is not very difficult to urine-proof my shoebox apt. I line most of the furniture with plastic. And everytime I come home I immediately change & put my things in my bedroom, which together with the guestroom & kitchen, are offlimits to all cats.

I wonder if anyone has any experience in this area. Is there a chance of a spraying cat suddently stop spraying a few years down the road? Will my only options be euthanising Felicity or resigning to live in a huge cat latrine for the next decade(Felicity is 7)? In this part of the world, adopting an adult cat is unheard of. Even a kitten has very little chance of being adopted. So rehoming is out of the question. Pls enlighten me if anyone has any ideas. TIA.
 

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I have no experience with this, but I don't think Baby's stroke had anything to do with the chase. I probably would have taken her to the vet when I found her limp, but the outcome may have been the same. So I think maybe you can stop blaming the other cats for Baby's death. And yourself.

I would spay both cats to start with to see if that helps. And while they're at the vet's, clean the house from top to bottom. Here's a thread that deals with that:

http://www.catforum.com/forum/37-behavior/77770-things-saved-my-home-solving-urine-problems.html
 

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This helped my cat to stop spraying.
Here is a copy of two posts I wrote about using Clomicalm instead of Prozac for spraying. I hope this helps!

This helped my cat to stop spraying.
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Hello. Graybee was sleepy the first week on the Clomicalm, but after that was his usual playful and loving self minus the spraying and aggression. He was a full blown tomcat when I adopted him (he was neutered right away) and has sprayed on and off through the years but after adding the last two cats to my household a year ago he sprayed almost constantly.

My vet tried Graybee on Prozac with limited results but we had to take him off of it because he became extremely irritable and withdrawn, as well as losing too much weight.

We started him on another medicine called Clomicalm and the changes are wonderful. He has completely stopped spraying and is back to being his old lovable self. I use the transdermal formula that is applied to the inside of the ear but you can also get it in pill form or a flavored edible form.

Graybee has been on the Clomicalm for three months now (over a year now with this repost) and it feels so great to have our house back to normal and not have to worry about urine smells and stains everywhere.

I also use the Feliway plug-ins and Feliway spray but the Clomicalm made the difference.

The meds took about two weeks before the spraying stopped completely. Not only did it help with the spraying, it also made him less aggressive toward my oldest cat.

I use the transdermal gel pen and apply it to his inner ear every night. The pills are the cheapest way to buy the medicine and they are easy to conceal in Pill Pockets which are like treats for cats. All my other cats will gobble up the Pill Pocket but Graybee turned his nose up at them so I decided to go with the more expensive transdermal gel pen.

The pill form should cost around fifteen dollars or less for a month's supply if you purchase them from an online pet med supply company. It's cheapest if you buy the larger 10 or 20 mg size and then break it to the correct 5mg dosage. It's more expensive if you buy it directly from your vet but you may have to for the first month in order to get a prescription to buy it online after that.

I hope this helps, and let me know if I can help in any way. I'm just so grateful to finally have found a solution that doesn't harm Graybee and gives us all a happier house!

Phyllis
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Marie73 & 6cats4me: Thx very much for the suggestions & I will certainly work my way thru' them.

MowMow: Felicity will be spayed next week. But as noted in the post, my vet didn't have much confidence that the operation would stop the spraying as it may have already been ingrained into a habit. Thx very much for your concern.
 

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I have dealt with a few types of inapproproate urination with my four cats and I have a few questions.

-How many males/females. Which are not spayed/neutered?
-When you find the urine, is it on walls or other vertical surfaces? Is it on the couch cushions (where you would sit)?
-How many rooms, with doors, do you have?
-How do you know it's only Felicity?

The reason I'm asking is because I've found vets don't tend to actually get to the bottom of the real issue.

If you have two cats of the same gender that are not spayed/neutered the chances of peeing goes way up, in my experience. Especially during intros! Spaying/neutering ALL the cats will likely help some. It might not completely get rid of the behavior, but it will help to a certain extent.

I've found, to my own dismay, that when one cat starts peeing inappropriately the other cats will follow soon.

When I first got Jitzu she was peeing EVERYWHERE. Especially on my things. The person I got her from did not take care of her, so she wasn't spayed, and had a UTI. Once I got her spayed and dealt with the UTI her peeing stopped. It was a combo of hormones and the UTI.

My males spray in response to a few neighborhood males who spray near our home...it goes away every winter and I'm working hard to make sure it doesn't come back this summer.

Oh, and DON'T spray the feliway directly on your cats. It says, right on the packaging, not to directly apply to your pets. It's a bad idea. Spray the room, spray the walls, don't spray your pets. If you have the actual spray it does need to be refreshed every day BTW.
 

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Hi Librarychick:
Thx for your response. My present cats are:
1 Felicity(female) -will be spayed next week
2 Jojo(female)-will be spayed next week
3 Nick(male)-spayed when 6 months old

I discovered Felicity spraying about the time when my first cat, Baby, died. Felicity cried day & nite about this time as well. I tried to put her on my lap to calm her down more often & very strangely, ten out of ten times, she sprayed on the back of my hand; though twice I witnessed her spraying on my blinds & once on my closet door. I also saw some urine marks on the side of my sofa. I saw Jojo sprayed once but never again. So I assumed the marks came from Felicity.

I took Felicity to a vet on 29 Feb to find out if she had UTI. Negative. I started using the Feliwell diffuser on his recommendation. All cats have quieted down during the night since then but Felicity still sprays. Spraying becomes a nightly event & always when she is on my lap while I am watching TV. I was watching the season's finale of Downton Abbey when she sprayed three times in the duration of the episode. So far, I haven't found urine marks on any furniture other than the ones I mentioned earlier. But I have purchased a black light which should help me get a clearer picture of Felicity's spraying pattern. I don't know how frequently Felicity is spraying but everytime when I am watching TV, my hand or my jeans will surely get wet.

Baby left my apt on 1 Feb & never returned( except as tufts of fur in a vial). Assuming the spraying started at this time, Felicity might have formed a spraying habit by now. But I am spaying the two females as a last-ditch attempt. I will try everything to keep all three cats. And I want to thank all of you who take an interest in this post.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Oh I forgot to mention: my shoebox apt consists of 2 bedrooms, 1 kitchen & 1 bathroom. One Feliway diffuser is enough for the entire apt but this is considered the average size in Asia.
 

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She's spraying ON you!!!! That is not misbehavior that is a cry for help.

I very strongly suggest that you find another vet for a second opinion. Behavioral spraying is always on stationary objects, it's marking territory.

What you're dealing with sounds more like incontinence. Did you tell your vet she was 'spraying' you?

I need some more clarification on this, so I'll tell you what happens when my cats spray to help you see what may be happening.

When the boys spray they start out by becoming restless, roaming the rooms for about 5-6 minutes. They sniff everything they pass, and generally seem a little agitated. If I don't intervene they then find a spot that has been sprayed before and investigate it thoroughly. They sniff whatever it is all over, then look around with their mouth hanging open. (This is because they are pulling the scent over a special organ in teh roof of their mouth...we call it their 'hunty face' 'cause they also do it when they're playing.)
Once they're through sniffing they turn around with their bum right to the wall, their tail straight up in the air. The tail starts to vibrate and then they spray.
THAT is marking.

It sounds to me like your female is more...leaking. She sits on you and when you stand up there's urine where she's been sitting? Right?

The only time any of the cats tried to pee on me it was Muffin. He'd been acting funny all day, his pupils were huge and he had peed all over the backyard when he went outside. Peed, not marked. He was squatting.
I finally noticed he was in real trouble when he started digging on my blanket and tried to pee on me. That wasn't him 'being a jerk' or 'marking' or whatever. It was a clear cry for help. He was saying "Mum I can't pee..." I rushed him to the e-vet and he had a very serious UTI.

If your female is leaking pee...that is NOT normal at ALL. I would be very concerned about what is going on.
 

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I have no advise. I only wanted to say I'm very sorry you lost your baby. It has to be hard on you. I think it's great you still want to work with the new cats in spite of your grief. I personally doubt the new cats had anything to do directly with her death. She was elderly and probably weak. Still losing a companion is so hard and I'm so sorry for your loss.
 

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I don't really know what to suggest, besides trying to retrain them in one area of the house, hopefully without carpet, while you clean the entire house. Maybe different types of litter and different styles of litter box. Also spaying may help.

I've known cats to pee directly on people before, including my cat. He's done it while sitting on me about three times, and beside me while I'm in bed several times too. I know a lot of cats that pee in their own bed - and keep sleeping in it, there isn't always logic behind these things...
 

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Hi librarychick:

I suspected UTI myself & actually went to two different vets but got the same diagnosis:no UTI. The second vet did a tummy scan(is that what it is called?) and a urine analysis. I have informed both vets that I believed Felicity BOTH spayed as well as eliminated inappropriately.

The truth is I saw spraying with my eyes only twice. Felicity backed up to the blinds/closet & squirted a few drops of urine onto the vertical surface with her tail quivering.

The rest of the 'spraying' all went like this: I was watching TV & holding a remote in one hand. Felicity was on my lap. When the commercial break started, I stood up to turn up the lights & that was when I discovered drops of urine on the back of my hand, remote control & sometimes jeans. This event was sometimes repeated 2 or 3 times an evening. I kept a log since my visit to the first vet on 29 Feb. It was almost a daily occurrence. But on some nites I didn't watch TV so she didn't have a chance to pee/spray on me. I should have used the word peeing but I wonder if I could use this word when only <3 drops of urine came out. Any ideas? TIA

Monster mom & Carmel:

Thx very much for your responses & concern. Whenever I visit Baby in the memorial gdn, I console myself by reminding Baby that although my ignorance cost her her life, I did pick her up by the roadside in a wet market on a rainy day in Oct 1998. Such sickly(the vet said she had a temp.),lowly, 3/4 week old, flea-infested tabby newborns die by the dozen a day in this part of the world. I wonder if she could have survived for 13 yrs in that tough environment. And I was no animal lover(hence the ignorance resulting from never looking into the subject). I just believe it morally wrong not to help another of God's creation if the assistance is potentially life-saving. I let her stay only when all attempts at rehoming failed!Thinking this way, I hope Baby would forgive me for not coming to her rescue when she was screaming for help.

When I decided to let Baby stay, I told her this would be a life-long commitment & I would provide food, protection & medical treatment. But in her hour of need, I failed her. So now I have come to the conclusion not to fail any animal once I have decided on adoption. At the moment I am willing to try anything feasible in my situation. And if Felicity could REDUCE spraying, I would be the happiest person on earth.
 

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Did you tell the vets about the incontinence? If she's just sitting on you and 'leaking' that's a whole different issue. If you didn't specifically tell a vet that you need to.

As far as the actual spraying, it could be related or not. I'd put her in one room with everything she needs and only let her out when you are able to actively watch her the whole time. The spay will likely help quite a bit.
 

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Hi librarychick:
Thx for your suggestion. A shocking truth was revealed yesterday when I took my two females to be spayed. Felicity had a tumour!!! That's a bit much! I just lost a cat in Feb! And now this! Anyway I have instructed my vet to perform a biopsy & send the specimen to the UK to be analysed. The results will be in within a couple of weeks.
 

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Well I'm glad they found it! Normal, healthy cats DON'T leak urine, so I had a hunch something was seriously wrong.

I hope that it's benign and she'll be with you for a long time to come.

It's very possible that the tumr was causing her pain, which led to high stress levels and marking behaviors as well as the leaking...did your vet completely remove the tumor? I hope that removal of the tumor would really decrease the bad behaviors you have been seeing from her.

All fingers and paws crossed here for a good result. Let us know when it comes bakc :)
 

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Thx librarychick & love.my.cats. My 7-year-old Felicity had a mammary tumor & statistically speaking I am quite certain it was malignant & it was a carcinoma. The vet had surgically removed it. I hope that the prognosis for Felicity is good. I would be very sad if I had to lose two cats in rapid succession, one to a stroke & one to cancer! I am also praying hard as well! I hope that in the near future I could post an update on 'Non-spraying Felicity' so that other forumers will know that there is hope in fixing a spraying cat. I am also keeping my fingers crossed.
 

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Hi everybody:

I must thank everybody for their response in my hour of need. For those not knowing my predicament, it went sth like this: Sb threatened to euthanize his two white adult cats if nobody would take them. I took them in as I was the original owner who gave him two palm-sized kittens 7 years back in 2005. Not being a cat lover myself, I had never heard of cat introduction. My resident 13-year-old resident died from the resultant stroke in Feb. To say I was heartbroken is really an understatement.

If this was not devastating enough, Felicity suddenly started crying day & nite & spraying/leaking urine, usually on my hand and while she was on my lap. Sb suggested spaying & I did just that two weeks ago. The vet discovered that she had a mammary tumor & it was promptly removed. I am still awaiting the histological report from the UK but thank God, Felicity is NO LONGER spaying!

To me, this forum is a lifesaver, I have spent hours & hours poring over numerous posts to educate myself about keeping cats. I have three at the moment & they are all benefitting from the newly acquired knowledge their owner gained from this forum. There are some forumers who have been here for quite some time & I salute them for their enthusiasm & perseverance. You have made the world a better place for even cats that you have never known.
 

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Thanks for the update! I'm so glad to hear that Felicity is feeling better and has stopped peeing!

Don't beat yourself up too much over your other cat's passing, it's likely she had some sort of underlying condition that didn't allow her body to deal with stress well. In any case if you didn't know any better it wasn't possible for you to have done better. Now you know and it's a mistake you won't repeat.

I hope you stick around and keep us updated on your kitties, nd we'd really like to see some pics of their sweet little faces :)
 
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