For backstory, start here. For the meat and taters, skip to stars.
I am getting rather desperate to find solutions to the problems I have with my cats. I have three - Zyll who we met here and who is still my biggest problem. Gateway, age unknown, though he’s doubled in size since he came to us off the street. Midnight, who we adopted for my ex’s daughter, and I got stuck with her. She’s about 2 years old now, small and runty but healthy.
Zyll has had issues with the litter box since Gateway came along. I think at first he just didn’t like to share, but that seems to have become a patent distaste for doing his business where it’s appropriate. When I realized that he wasn’t happy about that ‘other cat smell’ all over his potty, I gave then each their own and secluded Zyll in his own room (there were other reasons for doing so, he wasn’t well socialized with people OR other animals - he’s actually much nicer these days). That move seems to have come too late. Even in his own room with his own box and bed and toys and food, he would still poop and pee all over the floor and his bedding, and sleep in the litter box.
For Gate, and later Midnight, this worked well. They both used the box and I can’t remember having to clean up a mess created by either of them during this arrangement. I would just sigh and clean up after Zyll as best I could. He got healthier and seemed much happier on his own.
Fast forward a bit to the point Midnight goes into heat. I should explain, she is still not spayed (I know, bad cat mom on my part. Soon as I can afford to it’s the chop chop) and most of the delay is because I made it clear that I was happy with my two boys, and didn’t want the responsibility of caring for another cat. The ex agreed that since it was to be his daughter’s cat, he’d cover the necessary expenses. Never happened, and now he is ex-bad cat owner and I got stuck with her. So yeah - kitty in heat means little peepees all over. ALL over. And the smell nearly drove me out of the house. Very tough to clean up when you have no idea where it’s coming from.
I finally had enough, and tossed her in with Zyll. Rather localize the nastiness than have to track it down, and it saved the last of my throw rugs.
Apologies for the length, but some backstory may help with the advice giving.
Currently I am in Florida, and all three of the nasty devils are locked up in my foyer, because it can be enclosed and has a vinyl floor. Their litter box remains clean day after day, I am fairly certain they’re all using the floor and bedding instead. I hate having to keep them locked up, but they have made my home near unlivable. I have had to throw away more throw rugs because that smell just never comes out of rubber-backed mats. I tried when I first got here to give them run of the house, until my laundry basket got peed in. I have tried giving them each their own box, but they won’t stick to their own boxes, so the point is voided. I have tried all manner of sprays and humane deterrents that I could pick up in stores. I have considered putting the boys outside, but I generally disapprove of having outdoor cats, and Zyll’s deaf. They’d just be eaten alive by fleas and the concurrent worms anyhow.
I am truly at my wit’s end. I don’t want to have to give them up. I am cultivating this reclusive spinster cat lady image, you see. But by all that’s good and right, I want clean cats! None of them are bad at all. Even Zyll is healthy and happy now. Their only problem (albeit a major one) is where they potty. I would be grateful for any advice or tips you can share.