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Adopted cat: she seems to be settling fine, but...

Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by MiriamV, Oct 15, 2018.


  1. MiriamV

    MiriamV PetForums Newbie

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    Hello,

    I am Miriam and me and my partner have recently (3 weeks ago) adopted a 3 year old female cat. I have had cats before, a rescue one when I was little and a cat that grew with me. I have followed all the tips to help the cat adjust and we were actually very surprised by how trusting and sweet this cat is. On the very first day she slept with us on the bed, she likes to cuddle and sleep on my lap, she climbs the cat tree and explores the house without much fear and she is very well behaved.
    I know I am probably the luckiest person in the world, since I have been told that adopted cats, especially if not kittens, may take a long time to settle properly.
    However, something does happen: she uses the litter properly, but she does also pee on a spot on the couch and she peed several times on our jackets, if we did not hang them (she has been doing this since she has arrived, 2-3 times a week). I don't mind cleaning up and hanging the jackets, what bothers me is: why? How can I help this kitten to be happier?
    I took her to the vet last week (a trip she hasn't liked) to have a full check up and she is in perfect shape, so a urinary tract problem is (thankfully) to rule out!

    Plus, it's been a couple of nights since she hasn't been sleeping on the bed but in a tiny bed I made for her (which is in our bedroom) and I am just wondering whether she is more confident and she is just settling and finding out what are her favorite places or whether there is something else.

    A bit of background: she comes from a very crowded home, with 5 kids and 3 male cats. She was very well taken care of but seemed to be suffering due to the other strong cat presences and to a toddler that was too noisy, so our home, which is very silent and where it's just the two of us, seemed to be a great place for her. And so far she has only showed us love and affection - I am just worried by these little things, because I really want her to be the happiest she can be.

    Thank you,
    Miriam
     
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  2. kimthecat

    kimthecat PetForums VIP

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    Hi Miriam , Ive asked the mods to move this to the cat section where more people will see it.
    have you tried Feliway plug in .
    Clean the sofa with biological washing powder and you could spray it will feliway.
     
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  3. Vanessa131

    Vanessa131 PetForums VIP

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    Hi Miriam, how many litter trays does she have?

    A lone cat should have at least three, many cats will choose a tray to wee in and a tray to poo in, so she may need more toilets.
     
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  4. Jackie C

    Jackie C Cat slave

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    Hi, Miriam, and welcome to the forum. It sounds like you have a lovely cat, I am glad that you've adopted a rescue. x She sounds like she's found the perfect home.

    As @Vanessa131 says, some cats like more than one litter tray, one for wees and one for poos. This might simply solve the issue.

    If not, it might be territorial anxiety. Is there another cat who hangs around outside your house, or one that sneaks in? If so, she would smell the other cat, which could potentially make her anxious, and mark her territory. Hopefully, she'll settle down.

    As to sleeping on your bed, it does sound like she's growing more confident. Cats often rotate their sleeping areas, it's instinct, and reverts back to survival. She sounds like she wanted to be with you for reassurance, and now she knows you're not going to leave her, she's confident to sleep elsewhere. Our rescue, Holly, sleeps with us on the bed, but not for long. She rotates where she sleeps, although still has her favourite spots. It might be worth looking where she likes, and placing a little bed or cushion or something there (although she may ignore it!)
     
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  5. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    @MiriamV - hi :) It's not necessarily the case that she has no urinary tract issue. She probably doesn't have a UTI as the vet has not diagnosed that. But she could have intermittent mild cystitis, perhaps stress-related due to all the recent changes in her life. A bout of cystitis could cause her to avoid the tray and pee on a soft surface such as your couch.

    Or as you said it could be behavioural, due to her feeling a bit anxious in her new home, wanting to establish her territory in a strange environment. The fact she is sweet, friendly and trusting so quickly is not necessarily a sign that she feels at ease, but more a sign of her overwhelming need to be accepted by you. i.e. the cat is saying "please love me, I am a nice cat". Cats often behave like this to humans when they're in Rescue. 2 of my current cats were like that when I adopted them from Rescue at the age of 14 mths. It took a year before they settled down in my home and stopped climbing all over every visitor I had, including the builder (much to his slight embarrassment, LOL). Nowadays the cats pay little attention to visitors. :)

    I would add a couple of extra trays as the others have said ^^. Spread them around the house. Extra trays may encourage her to pee more often instead of holding on to her urine and concentrating it (as cats do).

    Also, a cat with any kind of bladder issue should be fed a wet food diet, no dry. Wet food ensures she will be getting all the moisture she needs in her food, as nature intended. (cats are not designed to be great drinkers). Plenty of fluids to wash through her kidneys and bladder, encouraging her to pee more often, so less chance of crystals developing in the bladder.

    You could consider giving her a calming supplement such as Zylkene or Yucalm. Both contain different active ingredients, and each is effective for different cats, though I have had more success with Zylkene for urinary issues. The capsules can be opened and the contents mixed with food.

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Zylkene-75...0728994&sr=8-1&keywords=zylkene+75mg+for+cats

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lintbells-...3&sr=1-1-spons&keywords=yucalm+for+cats&psc=1
     
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  6. Charity

    Charity Endangered Species

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    Hello and welcome. I think its just a matter of giving her time to settle in. Obviously your home is quite a change from the noisy environment she was in before and it may be that she is still wary that another cat or young child even is going to suddenly appear, especially if this caused her stress and was the reason she was rehomed in the first place. Its going to take a little while for her to realise she can relax completely.

    Cats are very finicky with their sleeping places, one minute they like one place, then they go and find another.

    She sounds a lovely cat to have and I'm sure with lots of TLC she will soon blossom.

    We'd love to see a photo of her, in fact, its compulsory on here. :D
     
  7. MiriamV

    MiriamV PetForums Newbie

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    Thank you! I am using both :)
     
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  8. MiriamV

    MiriamV PetForums Newbie

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    Hello and thank you!
    She has a large litter box but one only, we live in a one bedroom apartment and her previous owner told us that it should be enough. She was living in a home with 4 litter trays and 3 more cats (all males), so she came from a place where she had to share her litter box to one where she has her own.
    Could this be the problem? I also wash it every week and clean it twice a day.

    She has been okay for a couple of weeks and two days ago she became more anxious and started peeing on the bed a lot. I will take her to the vet again immediately, to make sure that she is actually healthy, and, if so, I'll try to figure things out.
    We play with her everyday, we cuddle with her a lot, and we feed her at precise times, trying to keep her routine as fixed as possible.

    Many thanks for your comment!
     
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  9. MiriamV

    MiriamV PetForums Newbie

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    This is Dotty. <3
    Sorry for the late reply, but my mail did not notify me about your replies :(
    I have started using feliway and she immediately looked calmer and peed in her litter tray, with some 'accidents', but very seldom.
    However, she started peeing on the bed a lot and on the armchair in the last couple of days and I booked another appointment with the vet, just to make sure she is fine.
    We try to play with her a lot, every evening after work and now we have started to play with her also at 6 am when we wake up. She still sleeps on the bed with us, especially on my legs or my belly and she is very cuddly, but I am starting to worry that she is still very anxious and I just want her to be happy.
     

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  10. MiriamV

    MiriamV PetForums Newbie

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  11. MiriamV

    MiriamV PetForums Newbie

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    Thank you for your reply. No there are no cats allowed in the premises, and the previous owners told me she is strictly and indoor cat, so there are no territorial issues.

    As I was saying in the other replies, I don't know why my email did not notify me with your replies. In the last 3 weeks she got really calmer and the pee was no longer an issue. She has been acting anxious in the last couple of days again, so I am thinking to take her to the vet (again - she is not going to love this but I need her to be checked properly). I will keep you posted !
     
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  12. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    @MiriamV - I am sorry the problem has not been resolved.

    Have you followed the good advice I gave earlier?

    1. feed a wet food diet, no dry food. This is important to ensure that she is getting enough fluids in her diet, and a more dilute urine so her bladder is flushed through more often.

    2. provide TWO litter trays - this is non-negotiable for an indoor cat. 2 medium size trays are better than one large tray. The previous owner was incorrect when she said one tray is enough for an indoor cat - it is not.

    If you don't have enough floor space for 2 trays, put up a shelf, with a litter tray placed on it, and a footstool underneath for the cat to access the shelf.

    3. Give the cat a calming supplement - either Zylkene (the link is in my previous reply) or use a supplement which will soothe her urinary tract e.g Cystaid Plus or Cystease.


    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Cystaid-Pl...2109739&sr=8-1&keywords=cystaid+plus+for+cats


    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Feliway-D7...&qid=1542109766&sr=8-1&keywords=cystease+cats


    As her problem is soiling with urine, it may be better to give her Cystease or Cystaid Plus ^^ for the moment, as either of them will help the urinary tract.

    Please let us know how things go.
     
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  13. Soozi

    Soozi PetForums VIP

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    Looking in to check on progress! I do hope she will be ok soon. Please keep us posted! Good luck! xxx
     
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  14. MiriamV

    MiriamV PetForums Newbie

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    Hello, and thank you! I will give you a point by point reply!

    1 - For the diet: she has ben fed with dry food for more than 3 years and I have been told not to change her diet until she has settled. I know that dry food has several limitations, especially because when we got her she was a bit overweight and we are trying to keep her healthy with exercise and by feeding her at specific times of the day.
    2- I will place another tray in a quiet corner, so she has multiple choices.
    3- I am using the plug in feliway at the moment, but tomorrow I will meet the vet and I will ask him about the Zylkene as you recommend, I have read a lot about it. I am a bit worried because she has been fine for 3 weeks, and I am trying to understand what has changed!

    Tomorrow I will meet the vet, I am planning to collect a sample of her urine and take that with me, since she hates vet trips, I really hope I can make it!

    thank you and I will let you know about the vet's response and whether there is a change in behaviour!
     
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  15. MiriamV

    MiriamV PetForums Newbie

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    I will!
    I am trying to follow any possible advice so I hope that something will soon work and that she will be fine!
     
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  16. chillminx

    chillminx PetForums VIP

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    Looking forward to your update Miriam. :)
     
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  17. Tawny75

    Tawny75 PetForums VIP

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    Good luck at the Vet :)
     
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  18. Gallifreyangirl

    Gallifreyangirl PetForums VIP

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    Good luck at vets.
     
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  19. MiriamV

    MiriamV PetForums Newbie

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    Hello :)

    As soon as I scheduled the appointment with the vet Dotty started to use her litter box again and looked less scared and suspicious. She is back on her cat tree. Of course I am not implying the she understood what I told the vet, I think she just needed time to recover from a scare. I called her former owner who told me that she is very scared by fireworks, and lately in borough it's been all a firework (even though I have to say that they didn't sound very loud to me and I am used to be alerted by think of things since I had a pet rabbit, who usually hate this kind of noises). In addition, on Sunday a friend came for lunch and she lifted Dotty (I haven't lifter her, I just let her come and sit on my lap or do whatever she feels like when she wants to, I am not in favour of forcing her to "hug" me because I think that this is not very natural and that she wants to be on her own legs).

    So, the vet recommended me not to move her otherwise I would stress her too much (and I agreed, she literally cried all the time when I took her for her check up and she spent a week being very cuddly but in a way that felt like she needed to be continuously reassured), so we agreed to me collecting a sample of Dotty's urine for a screening just to make sure that she's all right.

    I don't know what to think. I think that she has been with us for slightly more than a month and she is the most adorable cat and the sweetest creature I could possibly imagine. I loved my bunny very much, she was brave and obtrusive and funny and after her death I was devastated. I have waited for over a year to adopt another creature, I was still very scared because of how quickly and badly the tumour killed her. And now Dotty is so sweet and delicate and all I want is for her to feel at home and be happy. Probably the best thing is for us to create a very stable environment and to know that if one of our friends sleeps over she is not going to like it.

    Thanks to all of you for your precious advice, I wrote everything you said down and I will keep in mind just in case. I am attaching a picture of Dotty that I took the other evening, she was so relaxed :)
     

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