mess cleaned up, dishes done, 1st load of laundry is in...
Carol · Jan. 12, 2009
i think it was the snow in my slippers this morning that got me going quicker than usual....why did i have snow in my slippers? cuz carl started alarming in response to the dogs alarming but i thought i better beetle out there pretty quick in case i was wrong. i was right, all is well, except my feet are wet and frozen which is still better than sockless soggy foot in a rubber boot. one does not stop to put on socks and change ones foot gear when ones llama is alarming just before dawn. edith is tiny and at risk for pedators.
sooooooo...i have my tea now, the floors are mopped, i cleaned up the spillage from the bowls getting knocked off the top of the fridge...conan discovered stripes' high up hideaway which just truly pissed her right off.
and since i have been thinking about writing a post about peeing cats and i have nothing else i actually feel like doing right now....here we go.
in my humble (not really) opinion, cats pee and spray inappropriately for only 2 basic reasons...they are sick or they are stressed. the fruit loops piss on everything in sight because they once were fully feral. i am not even going to talk about health issues...bladder infections stones, crystals, diabetes, kidney disease, arthritis, cancers, or mouth pain....whatever...first step is always the vet, no excuses, no putting it off.
with the highly emotionally sensitive orange boys.....feral never fully goes away...it is always hovering round under the surface interfering with their ability to totally control their world. a cat without complete and utter control is an unhappy cat. an unhappy cat tries hard to define their safety zones.
saints is too ever changing for the freaky fruit loops to relax, they have to claim their rights here over and over again. tang is currently having a hard time with some of the recent admissions....not sure if it is the FF cats or conan. but someone is rocking the fruitloops boat and so they are spraying again.
i suspect it is conan because he was a chronic, horrid sprayer, that is why he lost his last home. a tough, emotional rescued street cat, he was only allowed into the laundry room which he freely decorated all over with his urine.
add bitchy cats like bitsy and clara and gomers like monty who think brutishness is play and those poor little orange boys are beside themselves to let everyone know, THAT THEY WERE HERE FIRST!
the peeing will settle down once i get the last of the new incoming in and give everyone a chance to settle and pick out their new place....it takes about three months so there is no point in hurrying them thru what they need time to just figure out.
a lot of peeing cats get here and they just stop peeing...there is almost no point anyhow. pat lost his last home for spraying everywhere, but he doesn't spray here at all. firstly we got his pain under control and secondly he does well with a lot of chaos...he thinks it is fun.
and quite frankly, the biggest reason a lot of them stop (like conan, pat, shilo, and countless others who come here for the very same reason)...i just don't give a damn. humans freaking out over cat pee is the perfect way to make it an ongoing problem.
if you look at it in one way only...pee is a symptom of something underneath...illness or unhappiness...then you quit blaming the poor victim cat. emotional pain is no better than physical pain, they both freaking hurt.
considering how many peeing cats come thru our doors...our house by rights should smell like cat piss...our house smells better in that regard than some folks who are lazy about cleaning their cat boxes. some still periodically spray and during their angst periods they spray a lot....but it doesn't smell like that around here, because we can clean it up.
we know a couple of things about management and are not afraid to invest in this. peeing cats and carpets are not a good mix. peeing cats and lovely soft fabric furniture don't go together all that well either. free access laundry strewn across any floor is just asking for trouble. and if you want one or two discretely placed cat boxes hidden from sight...well good luck with that. the more the merrier, the bigger the better....the best of all cat boxes are open and HUGE. (i like the ikea under the bed rubber storage boxes...i toss out the lids and voila, lots of room to dig and pee around.)
now i am not saying folks have to totally redecorate their whole entire house...but come on...a kitchen and family room area work great for a cat. they get to be where the action and family is, not shut away outside or in some room all alone. there are lino's that look even nicer than laminate, and leather and vinyl furniture is easy to wipe down. quit worrying about if they are peeing somewhere cuz now you can clean it up in a flash and most of them will stop when you quit being upset.
if it is other animals that are stressing them out...give them choices on safe places to live. if muffy hates tuffy or the god damn stupid dog then don't make them mix freely...give the upset one a world of their own...convert a den or a garage into a single cat heaven (no crappy, cheapo, shitty, whatever will work here, make it nice for them and for you) and plan on now spending a big portion of your life in this new area with them...come one ladies, a craft room to escape to and share with your beloved family friend, or the guys can have a mascot for company in their workshop while they hide away doing their tool crazy thing.
the problem is..people don't want to spend money on or inconvenience themselves because of their cat to give them whatever it is that they need to be happy. folks don't want to have to stretch their brains and actually make someone more important than themselves.
we have to adjust to every peeing cat that comes in here, we have to figure out a way for them to feel happy and safe. we have to manage the issue again and again whenever new cats come in and throw off the others with another new change. and we have to do this because their families won't invest in them...if you can't honestly afford it, you shouldn't have gotten a cat. but most can afford it if they plan, save and think and are willing to do it well the first time around. half assed doesn't cut it with cats...find all of the problems, now and potential in the future and remove them once and for all. if you cat sprays in favorite chair A, don't buy soft and stuffy fabric chair B for him to pee on next.
but mostly it is about priorities...redesign the family room to suit the cat or a trip to mexico? invest in some smart sketchy cat reno's or get that new big screen tv? i don't drug cats to make them stop peeing, that is just a stupid idea. drugged cats feel drugged, they do not like this and if they don't like it, as soon as they can, they are going to tell you they don't like it too.
i try to make unhappy cats who don't feel safe, feel safe again and til we get there i let them pee right in front of me. i don't get mad, when they are done...i get the bleach and i do a whole lot of laundry.
why would i get mad at an unhappy cat? this would make him feel happy again? why would i let a stressed out cat even think i was stressed too and it happened to be his fault?
the orange boys wrecked my tv...i was stupid cuz i put it right where they could pee on it. ha and ha...i learned my lesson well and my new tv is totally safe. i put a rubber sheet on my bed when someone was having trouble and then i finally moved my bedroom out away from them all.
i don't want to live in cat pee so i worked it out...they got 2 nice new cat rooms, i got got a cat free bedroom....it was fair to all of us. and that is how you take the trouble causing negative emotion out of dealing with cats who pee...make it fair...look at what you need to be happy, look at what they need to be happy and then get down to work and get it done.
most times when happiness is achieved on all fronts, the peeing just disappears....or at least, ceases to be a problem for anyone because if you do it right, it is easy to clean up on any super unhappy days.
Great post Carol! I am so happy Pat is ok,now that there is no snow I will come visit soon:)