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Old 04-14-2014, 02:12 PM
21 posts, read 31,069 times
Reputation: 11


I'm hoping someone might know some information....

I have a cat that is about 7 years old. I discovered less than a year ago that he has started marking my couch and sofa which ultimately were thrown out. I moved back to LI from NC and am currently living with my mother. She's being gracious enough to allow my dogs and cats stay.

The problem is that my cat has started marking again. He's been to the vet twice and has been doubled up on medication (Buspar). He does it more than once a day on my mom's 14 year old leather couch (we know it's old but she can't purchase a new couch until I leave with my pets). We've started crating him and let him out when we're in the den to watch him. My mom is at her wits end, but she doesn't want to force me to find a non-kill shelter who would take him, find a new home, or euthanize him. He's an extremely friendly cat. We're even trying to put him outside, but he always wants to come back in.

Anyway, long story short. Does anyone know of a reputable CAT BEHAVIORIST in Long Island? I know they're expensive (not happy about that), but I can't seem to really find anything online except for a guy in Brooklyn and an expert out West.

Any information would be appreciated. Thanks!
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Old 04-14-2014, 02:28 PM
Location: Florida
1,748 posts, read 1,961,247 times
Reputation: 1779
Unfortunately, it seems like your cat is not secure in its environment (it is a new house to it and all) and he is marking "His" territory. By keeping him in a crate, or putting him outside, you may be exacerbating the problem, as he needs to exert his dominance when he returns to the area.

I know it's a stupid question, but is he neutered? If he's not, get him neutered ASAP
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Old 04-14-2014, 02:41 PM
21 posts, read 31,069 times
Reputation: 11
I've been living with my mom for about 4 months so you would think he's getting used to the situation...but I guess not. He was neutered before I took him home from the shelter at 9 months old (I firmly believe in neutering/spaying). I'm pretty sure it's the environment and I'm heartbroken because I'm sure the best thing to do is to find a home for him. I'm just afraid that no one will want him due to the fact that he's black and 7 years old. I'm trying one last ditch effort in keeping him. Unfortunately, I sold my home and am now a travel nurse. I'll be leaving in a week for 3 months and my mom will be stuck with him. I personally think that if she lets him roam the house under supervision, it may help. He's locked in the den and basement due to my mom having 2 cats and a parrot. Unfortunately, the temporary situation is now looking to be another 1 to 1 1/2 years before I move out. I completely understand that the desicion is up to her as I'm living in her home. It just hurts.
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Old 04-14-2014, 05:29 PM
Location: Long Island, NY
7,844 posts, read 12,622,500 times
Reputation: 9239
I'm a little lost here...you said you noticed less than a year ago that he started marking your couch and sofa. You moved in with your mom 4 months ago and he started marking again.

Why was he marking before the move if he was neutered?

Crating is not the way to go--it's not supposed to be for punishment. He's stuck in a crate with no food, no water and no litter box.

Have you tried putting your mom's cats in a room so your cat can get comfortable with the new environment? Maybe rotate--her cats share a room and your cat is free to roam then your cat stays in a room while they roam? Pets need to be eased into meeting new pets and when moving.

Look online for information or check out that guy Jackson Galaxy from the Animal Planet. His show is called My Cat From Hell.

Good luck!!
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Old 04-14-2014, 08:50 PM
Location: southern kansas
9,120 posts, read 8,388,979 times
Reputation: 21237
You didn't mention your mothers' cats in the OP. If I had to take a wild guess, I would say that is a big part of your problem. As others have advised, you need to go through an introduction process with all the cats... feeding ritual, site swapping, play time, etc. Your cat needs to feel secure in it's environment, and right now it doesn't. By spraying it's announcing it's presence and giving a heads up to the other cats that it sees as a threat. Crating or secluding the cat isn't going to help, and will probably make it worse. I second the advice about watching the My Cat from Hell show on Animal Planet. There's a lot of very useful info to be had there for situations just like yours. You can look for a cat behaviorist if you wish, but they will probably give similar advice as you've gotten here. The spraying won't stop until your cat is secure and comfortable in it's home.
Hope this helps.
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Old 04-15-2014, 08:38 AM
Location: Wisconsin
2,902 posts, read 3,477,577 times
Reputation: 4100
Everyone has offered good advice (and I agree with watching My Cat From Hell--it's good advice and he's dealt with similar situations). I wanted to suggest getting a couple of Feliway diffusers to place around the house. This product was developed specifically to help with inappropriate marking. (However it is not a cure all. You still need to address the insecurity issues.)

Also, how many litter boxes do you have and are they spaced out around the house?
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Old 04-15-2014, 09:16 AM
36 posts, read 55,607 times
Reputation: 38
In addition to the Feliway, you may want to try Rescue Remedy. I've never had to use it, but I've heard good things!
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Old 04-15-2014, 01:56 PM
Location: Hampton Roads
3,032 posts, read 4,510,273 times
Reputation: 4422
I've had good experiences with Feliway.
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Old 04-15-2014, 02:16 PM
Location: Up North in God's Country
670 posts, read 994,536 times
Reputation: 1003
Mrsilly, my 15 year old cat recently started urinating outside the box. I call her my ADHD child as she is very hyper and does not like to be groomed. Well, she was getting pretty matted up, but would not let me groom her in any way and would tear across the house if she saw scissors.

I took her to the vet. He checked her for urinary tract infection, kidney problems, did abdominal x-rays, and an ultrasound. $450 later, he found nothing. So, on a hunch, he shaved her matts off as he thought stress from the itchy matts were causing the problem. He told me to get Feliway and spray it wherever she was urinating. (First you have to clean the areas.) Anyway, she stopped urinating outside the box immediately. I don't know for sure if it was the matts or the Feliway, but she is back to normal now.

The Feliway is a little pricey, but well worth it if it works. Best of luck to you with your kitty.
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