Ragdoll defecating on sofa/bed

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legalis
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Ragdoll defecating on sofa/bed

Post by legalis » Tue May 28, 2019 10:38 am

I have 2 ragdolls. Both 6yo. Over the last 6 months or so, they started doing poo's on my spare bed. Never anywhere else. Since I have closed that door, they have now started doing it on my spare fabric lounge. Never on my main lounge we all sit on, but only the spare one. No urine, only poo. Initially i think it was only one, now I believe both are doing it. Both have access to the same litter tray they have used since kittens and still use. No changes there. I have tired everything, discipline, covering it with a sheet (they just go on the sheet), smothering it with anti cat spray. Even after a professional clean to remove smell, they left it alone for a bout 4 days then went back to it. It is definitely a behavioral thing as they don't do it on the bed or lounge we all use. I am about ready to kill them as its an expensive lounge and i can't keep them out of the room as its a main artery. And suggestions?

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Lilith
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Re: Ragdoll defecating on sofa/bed

Post by Lilith » Tue May 28, 2019 10:57 am

Ugh. You have problems. There's obviously an underlying behavioural cause here, which I'll leave up to people more expert than me, but as a first-aid measure, I'd use puppy pads - at least they will contain the muck, hopefully.

Or could you move this furniture into a room they can't get into? Of course I know this could tempt them into using something else. AND - try providing extra trays and introducing different litters. I know mine (who are pretty well-behaved) go mad over lovely deep fresh litter - always a heavy bagful after I've renewed it.

Good luck!

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fjm
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Re: Ragdoll defecating on sofa/bed

Post by fjm » Tue May 28, 2019 12:39 pm

If it were dogs doing this I would say they did not consider the rarely used rooms "den", and therefore are treating them as a useful extra toilet. With cats I suspect that one got shut in, used the bed as an emergency loo, and discovered the advantages of an extra spot which also now smelled right, and they have now extended that lesson to other furniture. I would sit with the cats in the rooms in question for several hours a day - perhaps feed them there, play with them, read a book, etc, etc, to make the rooms a recognised part of the house. Use an enzyme cleaner wherever they have soiled. Close the doors the rest of the time.

And in the meantime review numbers of trays, type of litter and frequency of cleaning the trays. How many trays have you got, and are they in places where one cat may be blocking access? The usual rule of thumb is one tray per cat, plus one - so three trays, in different places, may help to ensure they always have a more acceptable option available.

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Ruth B
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Re: Ragdoll defecating on sofa/bed

Post by Ruth B » Tue May 28, 2019 1:58 pm

It definitely sounds like something has upset them to start this off. Was anything introduced into the spare room that might have started this off, something that smelled different, or could they have seen another cat through the window and decided they needed to mark that room as theirs, not realising it couldn't get in. Now they have decided it is a good comfy place to go and have carried on doing so.

The best advice I can offer is to make their litter trays more appealing, having at least 3 large trays available if possible and trying different litters might help, as well as keeping them meticulously clean. At the start of last year I had to take in my Mothers old cat, when she had to move into a nursing home. Mum was really concerned as Stroppy (her cat) refused to use a litter tray and insisted on going outside in all weathers. I knew she would need to stay in for at least a month or so, so I was prepared to go out and buy bags of compost or topsoil for her. However I filled a litter tray with what mine used just to see if she would use it before I went to the garden centre. She got out of the carrier after a 2 hour car journey, went straight to the tray and started digging like crazy. It turned out she just didn't like the wood pellet Mum had always used, she had been fine with it as a kitten, but as she got older she took a dislike to it, but the fine grain, clay litter I used was fine.

If it does continue the only other suggestion would be to ask your vet about a refferal to a behaviourist, they can talk you through what happened and hopefully find the cause, and thereby find the cure.

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lilynmitz
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Re: Ragdoll defecating on sofa/bed

Post by lilynmitz » Wed May 29, 2019 5:00 pm

I agree, something has upset them, and you need to get to the bottom of what that is. Pooing anywhere but their tray is usually a cry for help or a protest. Please avoid the temptation to get cross with them - there's no point. It will only add to their stress and they will have no idea why, in their eyes, you are suddenly grumpy with them. Cat repellent sprays aren't ideal - how would you like it if you had a hyper-sensitive sense of smell and someone made your house smell really foul ..... I guess you can already empathise with that!

Try looking at the house through their eyes - what has changed recently? New furniture, different cleaning fluids or detergents, change in cat litter, new boyfriend, new perfume (or BF's aftershave), builders in the house, dog visiting, new cat in the neighbourhood, noisy guests, family tensions etc? Cats are very perceptive of people's mood, and upsets can result in "accidents" like this as their way of dealing with their stress. If new smells, try to go back to the old ones. Also try a feliway diffuser in the rooms where they soil, which may help them feel calmer in these areas.

Also, get additional trays in, (1 per cat and 1 spare is recommended) and make sure they are clean always, and using the litter they like. Some cats prefer a very soft litter, and clumping litters are easier to clean. I found Worlds Best or Cats Best very good for this. It might also help to put a tray in the room where they're soiling so that they have that to use instead, then gradually move the tray back to where it used to be once they start using it. It may take several attempts for this to work.

But the main thing is to keep their environment calm and give them lots of reassurance. They do sound very stressed, as are you now, but if you can try to see their world from their viewpoint, you may find a way to get things back to normal.

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