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A Cat Who Poops Outside of the Litter Box

I am doing an interesting cat sitting assignment right now. It is a household of 3 cats where one cat is very friendly, one is in between friendly and shy, and the other never comes out and is exremely shy. They are actually indoor/ outdoor cats, but during the client’s trip the cats are staying inside the whole time. The client is not sure if they would come back to the door while I was taking care of them.

Well, three of the five visits I have made, there has been a poop waiting for me outside of the litter box. Luckily the boxes are in the bathroom on a tile floor so it cleans up well. It is still not the most pleasant thing to be doing. And, there are two litter boxes in the bathroom, but one gets used mostly while the other may only have one clump to clean out of it. So why would a cat not use the litter box and instead do a poop outside of the box?

There are several possiblilties for this. First, cats are very finicky about cleanliness. If a litter box is not kept clean they may just choose not to use it. Well, the box gets cleaned every day, and there is the second box also. So why wouldn’t this cat use the other litterbox that hardly gets used? Cats are finicky. There may be something about that litter box that the kitty does not like, so that one may not be an option for him.

The main concern is that you want to make sure the cat is healthy. When cats do not use the litter box, it could be a sign that the cat is ill. You should take them to the vet for a checkup and make sure there are not any underlying health problems. The clients say there are no health issues with the cats.

Another thing to remember is that cats do not like change. Changing the cat litter or changing the location of the litter box could make a cat more stressed and may cause this to happen. These cats are indoor/ outdoor cats, and since they are being kept inside the whole time this change may be the cause. Also, I am a stranger (even though this is the second time I have taken care of these kitties) and this could be causing some stress. If they are nervous about
me coming into their home they may go outside of the box.

One other possibility is that they are being dominant, or territorial. Since I am coming into their territory, they may be deficating outside of the box to let me know that this area belongs to them, and I should not trespass.

Like I said, the friendly cat is always out, always talking to me and wanting my attention. He seems fine. The second cat does come out sometimes and I have been able to pet her, although she is still a little shy. Both these cats have been at the door meowing like crazy for me to let them out.

The third cat has not come out, but I have kept an eye on him by making sure he is under the bed. Today, I found him in the cabinets under the bathroom sink. Since he is the most nervous, I believe he is the one doing the pooping outside of the litter box. All I can do is to keep cleaning it up if he has gone on the floor, and to keep an eye on all of them to make sure they are all doing well.

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