Cat likes couch better than box

by Chip Stapley
(Toutle, Wa.)

We have two cats that are sisters and they are almost three years old. They both have been using the litter box in the bathroom for the majority of their lives.

Just recently, one of the cats began using the corner of one of the cushions as her special spot to pee. This began happening about six months ago, usually at night. I don't know of any real crisis or trauma that may be causing this behavior.

I know a couple of years ago we had them fixed. It seemed like right after that, the silver and white one began to look like she was putting on weight... a lot of weight. She began blowing up like she had a soft-ball on her stomach. The vet found nothing wrong with her but, well, something was happening.

Well, I have read many of the comments that were dealing with cats not using the box and I see that this is a common problem. I will take her to another vet to see if they can find anything. It's just that her tummy is like a big round soft-ball. It's big.

There is no pain involved, thank God! It makes me wonder if that could be a contributing factor to her bathroom issues? What do you think?

My thoughts: I'm sorry to hear that your cat is having problems. Yes, I think it could be related. I don't want to alarm you, but there are some serious conditions that can cause your cat to have a swollen belly.

Severe cases of worms, tumors or cancer, and Feline Infectious Peritonitis (FIP) can all cause a swollen abdomen. A heart condition or liver disease can also cause fluid to build up, resulting in a distended abdomen.

Given that her tummy is big and round, and the enlarged belly started after having spay surgery, I think it's worth entertaining the possibility that she developed an infection. A couple of years is a long time to have an infection, but clearly something is wrong and needs to addressed.

Any of the conditions I mentioned could cause her to urinate outside the litter box, but regardless of her urination problems, it's best to get to the bottom of her other problem.

I hope that helps and please let us know what the vet finds.

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