Saturday, June 18, 2005

My Cat -- AKA The Stunt Pee-er

(A tale/tail with a lighter side to it, for once.) OK, this is an old picture but it will give you an idea of what I'm up against with my picky feline. If her litter box isn't exactly how she wants it, she acts out. Several years ago, when I was in a small apartment, I was sitting with my roommate, eating dinner, when we heard a weird noise. We looked across the room and saw my cat, standing on top of her litter box (the kind with the roof on top, so they can pee inside). We didn't get it right away, but I soon realized what was happening -- she was peeing into it from above, through the filter! That's when she earned the nickname of Stunt Pee-er. Even while doing a normal session (in her litter box without a lid), she is a stunt pee-er, trying to straddle the box by having at least 3 paws (if not all 4) on the edges of the litter box when she pees.

This picture was her last year, caught peeing in my bathtub. I couldn't believe it! So I bought her the auto-cleaning litter box, that knows when she's done and cleans 10 minutes later and that seemed to solve things.

That is, until yesterday. I walked into my bathroom and caught her again -- this time taking a wiz in my sink! Does anyone else have a Stunt Pee-er in their animal (I don't need to know about kinky siblings) family?


At 12:12 PM, Anonymous Rory said...

Hmmm, this is a tough one. There are usually just a few reasons why cats don't use the litter box, but you've addressed the primary one by getting the self-cleaning box. The other problem is that if they're very territorial they'll "mark" various surfaces around the house, but then you'll discover that they're spraying urine vertically, rather than sitting down the proper way (sorry if anybody's eating while they're reading this) and females will do it as well as males, but it doesn't sound as if that's the problem either. The only thing I can suggest is that you want to try to make sure that the behavior isn't reinforced and, so, if you're not keeping the litterbox in the bathroom, I would keep the door closed. Since I know you have another cat and they're not exactly busom buddies, it's possible that this cat was frightened by the other one when it was in the litter box and now feels safer going somewhere else, but even that doesn't sound too likely. It may be time to call in a cat shrink, or, if all else fails, you can always try drugging the cat with Rescue Remedy. I can send you the bottle I haven't used yet.

At 12:28 PM, Blogger Sergeant America said...


Yer' cat "beats" my doggie (Dottie/10 years old)! Dottie just "sidles" up to my Lazy Boy (the chair, not me), positions herself to watch TV and then farts! Depending on her feed, evacuation may be in order.

One may have to "be there" to appreciate the maneuver?


PS. I guess the "cat's outta' the bag?"

At 12:38 PM, Blogger Batya said...

Strange. Talented.
We had a cat who entered and exited the house through the bathroom window.

At 12:48 PM, Blogger Esther said...

Rory, thanks...I think the litter was too low and that's why she chose the sink. At least I must have done something right to let her know the bathtub was wrong. Could be my snapping the picture of it with my camera phone, humiliating her by showing it to anyone who dropped by the house. ;) But I think closing the door is an idea I may soon have to embrace. Thanks!

Sarge, that is hysterical! Sadly, it's not just dogs who pass wind. My cat has definitely farted, usually while sitting on my lap (with my laptop on it too)!

batya, yeah...she's talented all right. I'll try to get a picture soon of her straddling the box cause it's pretty darn funny. The bathroom window tho? That's pretty smart too.

At 3:52 PM, Blogger MissingLink said...

My cats are great that way.
They always use ther litter box.
On a very few occasions when they didn't the litter box was simply filthy (not their fault).

At 5:34 PM, Blogger MaxedOutMama said...

I would say she is simply fussy and wants to make sure you know that her needs are not to be taken lightly.

From her perspective, I am sure she thought she was being extremely accommodating by peeing down the drain.

You might make a big production of cleaing/replenishing the litter box every morning while she watches.

At 6:55 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thousands of years ago, cats were worshiped by humans. Cats have not forgotten this.


At 8:54 PM, Anonymous Rachel said...

my God I am laughing so hard!

For some reason our cat also does not like using her litter box, if she can't get outside she will just sit next to her litter box and make weird noises until someone opens the door for her

At 11:01 PM, Blogger Esther said...

felis, that's pretty much the deal with Stunt Pee-er. I don't think I had enough litter in there yesterday. My bad. ;)

MoM, great advice! I will make sure she's present. And believe me, I'm grateful that she chose the sink or could just have easily have been my closet. ;)

LOL Patrick.

Rachel, I'm so glad you enjoyed! If I can't have some laughs from this....well... ;)

At 5:40 AM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Perhaps you can train Stunt Pee-er to use the toilet itself. There are training devices which facilitate this desirable behavior. Of course, using the word "train" and "cat" in the same sentence is a contradiction in terms.

I have four cats, ranging in age from 16 to 4, all of them spayed females. If I get lax about cleaning procedures, one of them will scoop out her own litter box. Unfortunately, she scoops out those turds right onto the floor. She also has a second, quite small litter pan which she uses exclusively as her urinal.

BTW, Rory is correct when he states "it's possible that this cat was frightened by the other one when it was in the litter box and now feels safer going somewhere else..." One of my four girls, a Siamese mix, has appointed herself as The Litter Box Police and loves to ambush the shyest of the four; Miss Shy retaliated (or perhaps just committed an act of desperation) by peeing on the bedroom carpet, thus forcing me to police The Litter Box Police. I finally had to do away with the covered box because most of the ambushes were executed when Miss Shy was inside.

Sometimes cats develop a "surface preference," or so says one home guide for cat owners. Some years back, one of my girls, no longer with us thanks to the epidemic of feline AIDS, became fond of the porcelain bathtub. The only cure was to use citrus peels as a deterrent; eventually she went back to the litter box. Nowadays, one can buy "No Go!" at the pet mart. It works!

At 2:04 PM, Anonymous Jonathan said...

Your cat is punishing you. I know, you've been treating her like a queen, but believe me, in her pistachio nut-sized brain, she's nailed you on something. Your job: How better to serve her.

At 3:50 PM, Blogger Esther said...

AOW, lol about training a cat. You're right -- that does sound rather impossible but if I could, I'd love for her to use the toilet. How cool would that be?!? I truly hope my kitty wasn't scared away from using it. I think she was ticked at the litter level, which has been fixed. Sorry about losing your little one to feline AIDS. Your surface theory is very interesting. I may have to go invest in No Go -- thanks!

Jonathan, you crack me up, as always. ;)

At 6:44 PM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Have a look at the second photo @

If it worked, the money would be well spent!

BTW, many years ago, my mother had a cat which was toilet-trained. The stray just wandered in and proceeded to use the bathroom.

At 8:02 PM, Blogger Esther said...

AOW, while that does look frighteningly like my cat doing such action, it's a bit much to me. If she wants to use the existing toilet seat, it would be one thing. ;)

At 11:32 PM, Blogger patrickafir said...

I thank the heavens above I don't have to worry about that. haha

Also, lol@"Pee-er" heh

Rory, that Rescue Remedy works well with dogs too. I used to work with dogs, and we'd use it with some of the more frantic ones. They didn't all respond to it, but most did.

At 5:18 AM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

Supposedly (and I stress that I haven't tried the device), the on-the-potty-seat litter pan is just a training measure. [There's that conundrum again: using the word "train" to refer to a cat!]After a while, the cat perches on the regular seat.
Getting a feline to flush, however, probably won't happen.

At 7:04 AM, Anonymous Rory said...

Patrick, I've heard the Rescue Remedy can be effective. My problem is, with five cats, I think it might be difficult to make sure they get the appropriate dose since they suggest putting it in their food or water. So that's why I haven't tried it yet. But, like I told Esther, I figure if the cats really get to me...I'll just take the stuff myself.

Esther, you really can train cats to use the toilet. In fact, there's actually a kit to help them make the transition from the litter box. At one time, I thought about trying it, but then I saw a cartoon that showed a family, standing in a line, waiting to use the bathroom and one of them asked "Whose idea was it to toilet train the cat?" I guess I had second thoughts after that. Also, I have one cat (it happens to be the only male cat out of the five) who, on occasion, has tried to amuse himself by splashing all the water out of the toilet bowl. Enough said. I think they'd better stick with the litter box.

At 7:15 AM, Anonymous Rory said...

I just noticed the comment from AOW. I actually have seen cats flush the toilet. Probably the easiest way to get them to do it is to smear some cat food on the handle. The problem is, if they're anything like my cats, then they'll be flushing the damned toilet all day long.

At 8:15 AM, Blogger Always On Watch said...

If anyone has a cat which flushes the toilet, I hope that privileged cat-owner has a water-saver model, and that the model is one which takes down what's in the bowl.

Another interesting thing about toilet-flushing and cats...Two of my girls think that the sound of a flush is a summons to appear in the bathroom. If the door is closed, they try to claw it down.

At 9:06 AM, Blogger Gindy said...

A picky kitty.

At 9:49 AM, Anonymous Rory said...

Isn't it amazing how much interest this subject has generated?

AOW, that's really funny. With my cats it's sort of the opposite situation. They follow you into the bathroom, and as soon as you flush they know it's time to go, and they get up and leave. And forget about shutting the door. The male cat will sit usually sit at the door and wail, while the females seem to favor lying down on the floor and shoving their paws underneath the door. Then I have one who, if the door isn't left open quite enough for her to squeeze in, has actually hit the door so hard that it slammed against the wall.


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