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Help for senior dementia cat.

November 17th, 2005, 06:26 PM
Brandy is 22 - 23 years old now. He's lost a lot of weight, and lost his hearing. But he is eating well and not always in dementia. He's still happy unless the confusion comes on and I'm home almost all the time to keep my eyes on him.
The problem now, is he is forgetting how to do things such as using the litter. He puts his front legs into the box facing it, but forgets to get right inside, so he pee's on the floor. I NEVER scold him and just clean it up.
Only a couple of days now, he has started to pee other than his litter box. My winter jacket and my winter vest got pee'd on in the last two days. Both are dark and I'm wondering if he's associating dark colours as his litter or even realizes.
If he was sick, throwing up or not eatting, I would know his time has come. But it's none of those, except for the dementia. Any advise and PLEASE don't tell me to put him down because of his age. I've had other senior pets and know they require special care and handling, but Brandy's time is nearing, but still not here yet.

November 17th, 2005, 06:36 PM
I would not tell you to put him down - unless he is in pain and still recognizes you and is enjoying life as much as possible. But I admittedly think you may have to be creative at finding ways to help him find places to urinate - maybe limit him to a certain part of the home with all his things and you there he should be happy. If he looks like he needs to urinate then help him find his box - he prob has the idea but you may be right about the colour! Others may have different solutions.

Good luck!!

Lucky Rescue
November 17th, 2005, 06:41 PM
My suggestion is to take him to the vet for a check. He may have an infection or even kidney problems and be uncomfortable.

November 17th, 2005, 06:44 PM
aww poor sweet boY! My oldest boy is going to be 18, and he has days where he stops in his tracks and just stares at nothing (So I think dementia may be soon approaching)

Maybe try getting very low sided litter boxes, and maybe get a few of them and put them in places where he goes most often.

I wish you and Brandy good luck, and your an:angel: for doing all you can for him in his golden years!

November 17th, 2005, 06:55 PM
I have a huge tabby who doesn't really fit in any of the standard litter boxes, sometimes he'd end up pooping over the side because of the way he was positioned. So I went to Canadian Tire and bought one of those low storage boxes - about 6 inches high, 24 inches long and 16 inches wide, but you can go bigger.

I agree with Lucky, a quick check of his urine would rule out an infection.

Thanks for going the extra mile for this fellow, people have been known to PTS their pets for far far less.

November 18th, 2005, 01:09 AM
Thank ou for all your care and your suggestions. I have two litter pans and believe it or not, both BrandyCat and Petu made their own rule that one was for peeing in and the other for pooping in. How brilliant are my kids!!!
Brandy and I have a mental bond and we've had it since he was way younger. He was born with a heart murmur and had a massive heart attack at about 5. The vet said he would not make it thru the nite. Because he was hooked up to so many wires and tubes, I didn't know how to pick him up, so I basically climbed into the cage at the vets and put my forehead to his. I told him I couldn't live without him and he MUST be strong and prove them wrong. He did and they were totally amazed.
They put him on heart medication which he was suppose to take for the rest of his life and the vet told me he would never make it to middle age. Wrong again even though he still has his heart murmur! After about 5 to 7 years, I found the heart medication too stressful for him and tried weaning him off slowly. He did much better without it and being a white cat, his face didn't turn blue anymore. You know how Mama's can just tell?
Every time he goes to the litter box, he is close. That's why I think he is confused and picks the wrong spot while under the dementiia. He stares at invisable things in the corner for long times too.
I had a kitten Roxbro, well, by kitten I mean 10 years old, and he had complete kidney failure and water would come out rather than pee and he couldn't control that. It's nothing like that with Brandy.
I'm scared to take BrandyCat to the vet becuz I'm afraid he will tell me becuz of his age, he should be put down. He's beat all the odds against him and I know he isn't ready for Rainbow Brigde just yet. If he was, I would do the right thing.
As far as keeping him secluded to a smaller area, my apartment isn't that big and normally he's eating, sleeping or by my side along with Shasta, I keep everything low for him so he doesn't have to climb and maybe fall, but I have seen him jump from the tall kitty stand to the table when he smells I've opened up tuna for them. He's old and feeble but still got spunk when he decides to use it. Not a cat that is ready to go yet as you can see. Heck, they don't put down dementia patience just because of that. Perhaps I need some kitty depends if they sell such a product.
Tomorrow I will go buy some good nutrilizer that I used with my dog when she was losing her bowels and bladder when she reached 20.
A phone call to the vet couldn't hurt, but if he suggests putting him down, I'm not going!!!

November 18th, 2005, 01:30 AM
I sort of know how you feel. My geriatric bunny was much the same way and I could not bear to part with him - he had arthritis (took glucausamine and if he'd been a hosr, I'd have tried him with some butes!) and occasionally, he would get some pep from somewhere and jump up onto my bed (high for him) and run faster than usual, even when he needed help usually. He also went out of his box sometimes too - even tho I had bought some low ones he did not have to jump into but I felt it was a small price to pay for his loyalty and love. I had taken him to the vet and urinary probs were ruled out - actually I took him to a vet school specialist! He died in my arms (had 3 heart attacks in a row) but he did not die in pain and I am in tears even as I write this so while I cannot know exactly your bond with your fellow, I really understand. Still, a vet visit would not hurt - it does not mean you hae to put him down but it would help to see if he is in any pain that could be controlled.

Good luck!

November 18th, 2005, 02:25 AM
I didn't mean to bring tears of sadness to you and I'm so sorry. I will phone the vet tomorrow about Brandy.
When my times comes and we are at the Bridge awaiting our past pets, what a GLORIOUS day that will be! I hope they have gold covered carrages, as I don't have enough arms to carry all my loving pets with me.
I've rescued so many and kept so many, plus I've had everything from a horse to a squirrel monkey, but I'm sure the keeper of the gates have all that covered.
I'm like you, as I have to be there with them as they pass, holding them in my arms and never wanting to let go, tears streaming down my face with each and every loved one I'd had.
I tell myself, 'NO MORE!' I can't bare the heartbreak, but they sneak into your heart and you just can't say no any longer.
The bond between animals and people are so strong and I caan't understand the people who's hearts don't go out to them. Sometimes I think my love of animals is a kind of a curse as it hurts sooo much.
When I think back right to my childhood, I can remember each and every pet I ever had and each one special in their own way.
My last kid will be Shasta, as I made her a promise. My health is bad and before I got her, I wondered just how much longer I had, but whenshe came into my life, she brought life back into me. I promised to her I would live as long as she would, which with how long my pets normally live, I give her to be 20 before she passes and she just turned 3 this Oct. 20th, so I have a long time to go yet.
I don't understand that a small puppy came into my life unexpected and gave me life. She got me over phobia's and improved my illnesses (or at least my spirit) which makes me feel alive and so much better. I've improved s much in 3 years from the love of my animals, but mostly Shasta as dogs need looking after so much more than cats (until they age), whereas dogs stay kids forever.
I know this isn't the tread about the pit bulls, but I didn't go to get her. She came into my life in the most unexpected way and now that I love her and couldn't live without her, there is a threat hanging over my head.
I don't understand that people don't understand the love we have for our kids, especially once our human ones have left the home and had kidsof there own (the human grandchildren kind). LOL
But they have their lives and although I love them dearly, my pets are with me aways each day relying on me to take care of them and love them and in return we get their unconditional love. How precious is that!
Each pet is precious and even on my website I have included my Rainbow Bridge pets and cried the whole time making it.
You and the others are right though, I must phon the vet and perhaps there is a medication to help Brandy's dementia...and if not, I ill continue to soak my clothing in the solution and make his final days as dignified and happy as possible. I can always get new clothes, but Brandy is a one of a kind.

November 18th, 2005, 07:25 AM
Conners,a beautiful post and so very true.:love:
Although caring for and loving our animals and others,can be painful,I could not ever imagine life without them.
I am 61yrs old and my cats are 3,7 and 10,the thought that they probably will outlive me,is worrying,but I also think they will keep me alive longer..
I have 2 friends who have geriatric cats,one passed away this week,just did not wake up.The other,a Siamese,is probably 21yrs old and other than being a little skinny and almost blind,she keeps the other 4 cats in check every day,sticks to the owner like velcro.
Like Badger,I too use large boxes for my cats and mine too pee in one and poop in the other:D
:grouphug: to you for being the person you are!!

November 18th, 2005, 01:16 PM
Thanks Chico2 and all the others. I phoned my vet and at this age, they would not want to try any behavioural medication. She suggested everything that all of you did, the confindment to a smaller area, the lower litter box, etc.
I think what I will do is keep his things in my bedroom because he loves sleeping in my bed and it's also where my computer is, so I'm in here a LOT! I can always bring him out for visits to the living room when I'm in there and that will be our special treat time.
One thing that I HAVE to mention, every once in awhile, Petu (about 10 or 11 now) tried to see if he can take the boss cat position. BrandyCat let's him know HE'S BOSS CAT and don't you forget it, and he's not nice about it either!!! LOL
There's an excellent (here's where I lose words and need to explain what word I'm trying to say. It doesn't mask the odour, but actually removes it), that I used with BunnyDog when she was old.
The first demonstration I saw of it was at a cat show I was just going to see (not buy) (that's how I ended up getting Roxbro my white silver shaded chancilla persian LOL) and the man poured ammonia into his hand and asked if anyone wanted to smell. Brainless here knows what ammonia smells like, yet I go and smell it and whooosh my sinus' were cleare for sure! I said, 'Yup! That's ammonia!' Then he poured just a tiny ammount of this stuff directly into the ammonia on his hand and said smell my hand now. NOTHING!!! It's expensive, but I swear by it.
So if my Brandy has an accident, I'm going to be ready for them and he will be none the wiser. OHHHH I LOVE MY BRANDYCAT!!!! :pawprint: :love:

November 18th, 2005, 02:07 PM
I lost my Samson at 22 years of age and the last year of his life I bought the smallest diaper I could find and cut a hole out for his tail. He had the same problem that your kitty has. He just couldn't get into the litter box and couldn't use the steps either.The diaper never bothered him and he never cared about it. He would still try to get to his litter box and go through the motions of doing his thing...I was at home with a baby so each time I changed my baby, I changed Samson. After a while he got the idea and did not even bother to go to the litter box. He would squate in front of my and do it. I had 4 other cats at the time so I did not want Samson to pee everwhere having the others think he was marking his territory.

November 18th, 2005, 04:51 PM
Ohhh, kitty diapers, great idea - I had not considered that but many ppl with disabled pets use them with success. In a small space - where you live, that may well be the solution to the "missing the box" prob. As for other issues, lots of TLC and ensuring he is in no pain is the best advice I can give you there and you seem to be doing that well now.

Don't worry about making me cry - I can finally walk down the bunny asile in a pet store or WalMart without crying so I am making progress. And it is the memories of my wonderful bun, not you that brings the tears.

Just care for your kitty as bedt you can - that is the nost heartfelt and memorable legacy to your other pets you can provide. Take care!!

November 19th, 2005, 01:48 AM
I wondered if they made 'Kitty Depends' for senior cats with problems. Mostly Brandy makes it to the litter, but once a day I find another pee article. Funny I never see him though, I watch him all the time, but then I have my other fur-fam plus chores, so it could be during those times.
The poor thing was the CLEANEST cat I EVER saw or had. He never had a knot in his fur as he groomed so frequently. Now, I try to cut them out, but he isn't too keen on me doing it. I know they must hurt as they pull, but he is so frail that I hate to work on him too much.
Tomorrow I go out looking for kitty Depends unless anyone knows of a store in the London area that sells them.

November 19th, 2005, 07:28 AM
You might have better luck with any cheap baby diapers like Zellers brand and make a small hole for the tail. They are super absorbant and keeps the moisture away from the fur. I hope all goes well for Kitty and you. By the way from experience never get the scented ones. They irritated Samson so we went for the none scented no aloe kind.

November 19th, 2005, 08:33 AM
It could also be a bladder infection. Often cats pee outside the litterbox when they have one. Have the vet check for that.

November 19th, 2005, 12:02 PM
You might have better luck with any cheap baby diapers like Zellers brand and make a small hole for the tail. They are super absorbant and keeps the moisture away from the fur. I hope all goes well for Kitty and you. By the way from experience never get the scented ones. They irritated Samson so we went for the none scented no aloe kind.
My son (the human kind) had the same problem with scented ones, so I would never get scented.
I forgot who's post is below yours, May Anne??? It's my short term cognitive problem that can't let me remember.
I did call the vet and Brandy is using the litter boxes when not in his dementia times. It's all part of old age and dementia. He's confused, so that rules out bladder infection as he doesn't have a problem going, he just doesn't always know where his litter box is.
My daughter had a mouse in her house and wanted to borrow Petu. I made her promise if Petu caught the mouse, that NO HARM should come to that mouse. Since she is afraid of it, (silly girl) I told her to put on a glove and put it outside.
Well, during the time Petu was gone along with one of the litter boxes, the pooping one...Brandy went to where the box was and pooped there until I got Petu and the litter box back. He knows where to go, when he doesn't get lost, but can't figure out that if the pooping one wasn't there, he could having used the peeing one, but that's how dementia is. And it's something I will deal with until he passes. My job is to give him the dignity and all the love he needs until his time comes...and believe me, watching him like this isn't easy andknow his passing will break my heart no matter how much I say I am ready for it. I cry thinking about it, so it will be worse once he is gone.
He's been part of our life since the kids were small. They moved out and got married, had children and I still have Brandy. Losing him will be like losing a child that never moved out, same as my BunnyDog.
I don't even remember the first 3 days of Bunny gone. Neighbours said they found me frantically runny the streets looking for her. Naturally, I needed medication to calm me down and bring me back to reality, but it's hard and I'm already in tears writing this.