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Old August 3rd, 2013, 09:37 AM
Aviatrix Aviatrix is offline
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Litter box dispute - help us decide!

Okay, so we need your help settling a litter box dispute! My husband and I just bought a new house and would love to get a cat but there's one thing holding us up: we can't agree on where to put the litter box!

Hubby is completely turned off by 'seeing' the box and wants to put it in the basement. The previous owners had a cat and one corner of the cement floor in our basement smells like cat pee. We've tried our damnedest to clean it and there is now a carpet over the floor, but if you get close, it still faintly smells like cat pee. My husband thinks that's the best place to put a litter box since it 'already smells like cat' and is out of sight. I worry that the odor will prompt the new cat to pee on the floor instead of the litter box to mark territory. I also prefer that the cat spends its time on the main floor of the house and think that if its litter is in the basement it will want to spend its time there. Oh, and we would need to cut a 'kitty door' so the cat could get down there in the first place. (Have no idea if the cat would even go through it!)

One main floor option would be the mudroom/laundry room; however, that would mean leaving a sliding french door open a crack so that kitty could get in and out (a heating concern in the winter). The other concern is that since the mudroom is one of our main entrances, it might encourage kitty to escape when the door opens and we want an indoor cat.

Neither choice seems clear. Help us decide!!

What do you think? Will a new cat pee in a spot that smells like pee from another cat? Is it best to keep the cat away from that area altogether? Any creative solutions??

Help is appreciated!
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  #2  
Old August 3rd, 2013, 10:53 AM
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Loki Love Loki Love is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aviatrix View Post
What do you think? Will a new cat pee in a spot that smells like pee from another cat? Is it best to keep the cat away from that area altogether? Any creative solutions??

Help is appreciated!
First thing - you need to get rid of ALL that pee smell and traces before bringing in a new cat. If you can smell it, the cat will certainly smell it. Even when you can't smell it.. the cat may STILL smell it. Look for a good enzyme cleaner. Can you pick up the carpet and do a thorough cleaning underneath it still?

We've always had our boxes for the cats in the basement and they continue to spend time with us upstairs. Ideally, you'd want a box on both floors - some cats are fussier that way
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Old August 3rd, 2013, 07:37 PM
Longblades Longblades is offline
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I agree you need to try more to get rid of the previous cat pee smell. Have you been in your house one of those awful days where the humidex hit around 40C (~105F) yet? Hah, just wait till it smells then.

It's practically impossible to get that smell out if the concrete is at all porous, and it probably is. An alternative treatment is to seal it in. Visit your paint store and ask about special paints that do just that. You may have to paint the walls and the floors. Even female cats can spray on walls, one of ours did.

Your cat would be quite strange if it chose to spend it's time near the litter box. Cats are very fastidious and most will want to bathroom away from where they eat, play and sleep. The basement should be fine, two of our boxes are down there. I just like to have them where I can easily access then for cleaning.

A young kitten may need to have a box closer till it is able to negotiate stairs and whatever distance is involved. For kittens we did usually put a box upstairs where they could get to it quickly and easily.
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Old August 20th, 2013, 10:24 AM
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pamha pamha is offline
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Until we had more than one cat, we only had a box in the basement for years. Our home already had a pet door in the basement door though. I do agree with using an enzyme cleaner and/or sealing the smell area first though. Generally the cats spend most of their time upstairs with us, but do like laying on the cool concrete floor in the basement during the summer. As we added a couple more cats to our home, we did add an additional basement box and one upstairs in the bathroom that has a hood, so keeps the litter out of sight, more or less.
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Old August 20th, 2013, 02:30 PM
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Marty11 Marty11 is offline
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I am not sure about the basement either. I would block it off cause your kitty might pee there. Mud room too risky of the kitty getting out. Do you have a large bathroom? Or how bout a hallway closet or storage type area and leave the closet door open a bit. Cats like to go into a hideaway. Also if it's on the main floor you will keep it cleaner, very important.
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Old August 20th, 2013, 06:20 PM
Barkingdog Barkingdog is offline
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I would give a the basement a good inspection to made sure the last owners did not leave any toxic to kill rodents .
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Old August 20th, 2013, 06:49 PM
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Koteburo Koteburo is offline
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First I would recommend to treat the area with a solution of vinegar and water 50/50
Go beyond the limits where you think the cat peed. Do all the room if necessary.
Repeat a few times during the following days and once you're at it I'd follow Barkingdog's advice and check for any toxic substances that could be in the basement.
Second I totally agree with you with making the main floor the cat's headquarters
Currently I live in an apartment and we have 3 cats. 1 litterbox is in the washroom and the other one in a hall. They're both covered, the ones that come with a lid or hood. We clean them once a day and we use litter deodorant and we never experience bad smells, like poo or pee, never and trust me, I have a very keen sense of smell and after coming back from work or a day out I would most definitely notice if there was a smell.
So, if well managed your husband doesn't need to worry about any smell nor seeing clumps of poop and pee since the litterbox is covered and relatively clean.
The laundry room sounds like a good idea as long as you make sure not to leave detergents, bleach and similar items to the cat's reach where he or she could knock them over and intoxicate. Aside that sounds good either there or in any discrete area on the main floor. I totally vote for that
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Old August 20th, 2013, 08:17 PM
Barkingdog Barkingdog is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Koteburo View Post
First I would recommend to treat the area with a solution of vinegar and water 50/50
Go beyond the limits where you think the cat peed. Do all the room if necessary.
Repeat a few times during the following days and once you're at it I'd follow Barkingdog's advice and check for any toxic substances that could be in the basement.
Second I totally agree with you with making the main floor the cat's headquarters
Currently I live in an apartment and we have 3 cats. 1 litterbox is in the washroom and the other one in a hall. They're both covered, the ones that come with a lid or hood. We clean them once a day and we use litter deodorant and we never experience bad smells, like poo or pee, never and trust me, I have a very keen sense of smell and after coming back from work or a day out I would most definitely notice if there was a smell.
So, if well managed your husband doesn't need to worry about any smell nor seeing clumps of poop and pee since the litterbox is covered and relatively clean.
The laundry room sounds like a good idea as long as you make sure not to leave detergents, bleach and similar items to the cat's reach where he or she could knock them over and intoxicate. Aside that sounds good either there or in any discrete area on the main floor. I totally vote for that
I had two cats and their littler box never smelled bad , I cleaned it every other day , I kept it in the bathroom as I had wall to wall rug in the rest of my condo.
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Old August 21st, 2013, 08:05 AM
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marko marko is offline
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I'm with the others, lift up the carpet and try to clean/seal the area.

If this were my cat that's what I'd do and then put the litter box in that exact spot.

Your original question is unanswered though and I'm curious as to what other members think.

If that spot is cleaned again, and a litter box is placed over it, and there is still a hint of smell under the box from the old cat, will the new cat use it?

My guess would be yes (for most cats). Do other members agree?
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Old August 21st, 2013, 09:44 AM
Barkingdog Barkingdog is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by marko View Post
I'm with the others, lift up the carpet and try to clean/seal the area.

If this were my cat that's what I'd do and then put the litter box in that exact spot.

Your original question is unanswered though and I'm curious as to what other members think.

If that spot is cleaned again, and a litter box is placed over it, and there is still a hint of smell under the box from the old cat, will the new cat use it?

My guess would be yes (for most cats). Do other members agree?
I guess it would depend on how picky the cat is. If the OP has a very neat and clean cat it might not want to use a spot that smell like another cat.

I once lived in a hotdog stand in Berkley, Cal. It was my boyfriend place and I moved in with my dog and we got a cat together . I know it sound horrible but we did OK. One day my boyfriend was cutting up some yams and a piece
of yam fell into the cat littler box. Our cat got up and look at us disgustedly and when over to his box and covered up the piece of yam! Our cat thought we where slobs to use his littler box and not cover it up. LOL!
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Old August 22nd, 2013, 12:09 AM
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I realize this question is from the first of the month and also that the OP has not returned but in case - if the husband is not wanting to "see" a litter box then how about using one of these designs or the many others available? Just a thought.........
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Old August 22nd, 2013, 09:14 AM
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Koteburo Koteburo is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Barkingdog View Post
I had two cats and their littler box never smelled bad , I cleaned it every other day , I kept it in the bathroom as I had wall to wall rug in the rest of my condo.
I totally agree it doesn't have to smell bad at all
And it doesn't
Lucky that we also have well behaved cats. They absolutely never pee anywhere else, so we're cat pee/poo free. Except when Mulder insists in sticking her butt out of the litterbox hole
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Old August 28th, 2013, 05:52 PM
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sandyrivers sandyrivers is offline
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Litter box dispute

I agree the basement floor should be cleaned first before getting another cat.

as to the litter box, the basement seems fine with me, as long as the cat agrees with this! Some cats are fussier than others, also if it's a kitten, the box should be easy access to him/her.

I like the cat box covers shown in a previous post, they look elegant and hide the box, but sometimes the human can 'forget' the box is there and 'forget' to pick up after the cat...

As for smells, I have 9 cats in my home and the litter box never smells, (and I use old school generic clay litter from the grocery store), it's just a matter of picking up after them and changing it once or twice a week depending on how many cats you have.

People came to my house and never even knew/couldn't believe I had that many cats until I told them, trust me, if you take care of the litter, it will NOT smell!

sandyrivers
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Last edited by sandyrivers; August 28th, 2013 at 05:55 PM. Reason: add info
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