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Animal Doctor Articles Weekly on May 08, 2012

Question

My daughter's house cat, a 9-year-old spayed female shorthair tabby, has been pooping on the floor and/or rug for the past few months. My daughter has tried all-natural litter, moving the litter box and cleaning the box twice a day. The cat has been checked out by the vet, who ruled out any physical causes. She suggested it was stress-induced and put the cat, Storm, on Prozac. There has been minimal improvement, and giving Storm pills is very stressful. We are at a loss as to what we can do next. We are hoping you may have a suggestion or recommendation.

L.C.H., Silver Spring, Md May 08, 2012

Answer

I am shocked that the veterinarian prescribed Prozac for a cat who may be suffering from painful constipation or blocked anal glands. You did not say if the veterinarian considered these possibilities, or if she suggested any dietary changes. These are the most common reasons why cats develop an aversion to their litter boxes and poop elsewhere.

Another consideration in older cats is the onset of Alzheimer's disease (or senile dementia) brought on in part, I believe, by a deficiency in omega-3 fatty acids in their diet.

Whatever the root cause, increasing the water content and reducing the fiber content of the cat's food should help. Do this by feeding her quality canned cat food or Wellness or Organix dry cat food, plus adding a few drops of fish oil and a tablespoon of raw organic yogurt or kefir.

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