Brotherly Cat Love
Today is my brother’s birthday, so let’s talk about cat brothers!
This question was asked on Just Answer: We have 2 cats, brothers, 15 years old but very fit & healthy for their age.
We moved to a new house 3 months ago & decided to use a litter tray for the first few days (they previously used to go in our back yard).
Since then have let them out & one cat will go outside & dig & toilet in the yard, but other one will only use the cat tray. It seems as though he has forgotten how to dig in the yard. Have tried putting some of his soiled contents of the tray in the yard to encourage him to go, but although he likes staying in the yard in the sun he will just lie down next to the bits I’ve left & totally ignore it.
He goes down with his brother & watches him doing toilet but seems to have no idea what to do.
Tried scratching his paws in the newly dug dirt but he gets annoyed. Normally the most passive cat ever.
He will rush upstairs to go pee / poop & then go back down to the yard.
Am at wits end as the house is small & don’t really have space for the litter tray. By the way if I remove the tray he will go in the bath or shower. We have not reprimanded him at all..just clean the tray / bathroom etc.
This was the answer given by the veterinarian adviser:
I think that when you described him as a passive cat you accurately described his problem. He is too passive and afraid to go outdoors in an area that he has not identified as his own and where other cats may disturb him, or worse attack him, while he is eliminating. At your old house he was “home” and comfortable. It was his habit to go outdoors and it smelled only like he and his brother. At your new place it likely smells like previous cats and he isn’t one to make waves and “mark” over a strange cat’s scent. That would be an aggressive move. Although physically he seems well he knows he’s not in his prime and has no wish to fight.
I am glad that you aren’t reprimanding him. That will only make him more uneasy and he may choose a more inappropriate place to go.
That sounds like a good explanation to me, but I doubt it will satisfy the question. When someone claims they don’t have room for something like a litter tray, what they’re really saying is they don’t WANT a litter tray in their house. A litter box doesn’t take up much space, so do whatever is most comfortable for the cat. At 15, these boys are actually in their 80s, and at that age, wouldn’t you want your own elimination needs accommodated in the most comfortable way for you?
A question was asked on Yahoo Answers: