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Defecating outside the litter box

Species: cat | Category: behaviour | Submitted: 21 March 2007 12:55PM | viewed 4532 times
Q Lisa asks:

We have just moved to a flat from a house so there is no garden for her to go in to but she has started to mess right by the front door, have tried deterrents and moving litter box. It's strange but she only seems to do it when my mother is about too. Is there any thing we can do to stop her?

Q Our vet says: This sounds like a problem known as "middening". Basically she considers the door as an area which in her eyes is not secure and she is sending a clear message to any visitors that this is her territory! (Cats use smell from urine and faeces to mark their territory). You could try a couple of things. The first is to use Feliway which is a pheromone product for cats which will help her feel more secure generally. This is available from vets or on-line. The next thing you could do is to put her food down by the front door as this will make her less likely to defecate there. If this does not work you may need to consult a behaviourist in your area. Always make sure her litter tray is clean since some fastidious cats will not use their tray if it is at all messy.

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