Marcus Won’t Use A Litter Tray in New Home

Marcus a rescue cat
Marcus a rescue cat
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Hi, I received an email from Leanne of Kays Hill Animal Sanctaury. She wrote about Marcus, a lovely, solid, black and white, male rescue cat who looked after Gerty, another rescue cat at the sanctuary, for a while. Here is the email. Leanne wants some help. I make some comments myself below Leanne’s email.

Hi Michael, it’s Leanne. You’ll probably remember Marcus, Gerty’s friend, who was re-homed a couple of weeks ago. Well, they are still having problems with him peeing and pooing all over the house. He has once or twice used the litter tray but usually doesn’t.

He has settled in well with the other cats and he keeps a respectful distance from Sammy, the smallest cat, but is getting on well with the other two. Although the two cats (Marcus and Sammy are not fighting) he is not nervous around the house and happily lies on chairs, sofa, or whatever is handy and also likes to be in front of the coal fire with the other cats.

He is happy to be fussed by his new family and  he comes to them for fuss and cuddles.  He is eating normally and what he is passing is normal. He is healthy and happy but will not stop doing his business in inappropriate places! They have supplied plenty of trays and have put them in ‘quiet’ corners where he won’t be disturbed.

The other cats mostly go outside but will occasionally use the trays. when he was with us we never had any problems, but of course he was quite confined and is now in a house with a lot more space. He only has access to  two rooms at the moment. his family love him and want the best for him.

I know they are not about to give up on him, but I just want to try and help if I can. So, I wondered if you could possibly put a page on PoC and ask if anyone has had the same sort of problems and how they solved them. all any of us want is the best for Marcus, so any advice would be great. I could pass it on to them. thank you….

My thoughts:

There are two reasons why a cat won’t use a litter tray:

  1. he has not learned to use it and/or;
  2. he is stressed

What is the reason in this instance? Marcus comes from a single person household as far as I know:

The ‘gentleman’ who he had lived with all his life, had, a week or so before, given his daughter his cat and the money to take him to the vet to be put to sleep (PTS)..(Leanne about Marcus – see Marcus’s story).

Marcus knows how to use a litter tray. He is in a home where there are other cats and he appears to be coping OK.

However, I sense he is stressed. This is not due to the new home, which sounds just fine. It is that he is in a new place with other cats. He may get used to the new place. I feel he may not. That might sound defeatist. I don’t know.

I have a feeling that he should be a single cat in a single person household; replicating what he is used to.

However, I may indeed be defeatist and would welcome the ideas of others as would Leanne.

Michael and Leanne

13 thoughts on “Marcus Won’t Use A Litter Tray in New Home”

  1. That’s good news Leanne, it’s nice that Doreen is being patient with Marcus, he’s had a tough time bless him but many a one might have sent him back to Kays Hill which would have been such a shame.

  2. i was talking to doreen the other night and she said that marcus does seem to be getting a little better, as in he has used the litter tray sometimes, not always, but this is an improvement. she said also that they have allowed him to go into their backyard, supervised of course for now, the yard has a very high wall all around so he cant just make a run for it, so to speak. she said he likes to have a little explore but then goes back inside himself. hopefully his improvement will continue. thanks for everyone giving advice. i know they have been trying various things.

  3. I must have missed this.
    Poor Marcus he’s had such a lot of trauma lately no wonder he’s messing outside of the tray.
    I’d be very tempted to give him his freedom soon,go out with him a few days first,he might like to use earth outside,I wouldn’t think he’d run away as he seems happily settled.
    I’d think the trays might have the other cats scents on putting him off,maybe he needs a brand new tray if he hasn’t got one already.

  4. Cat Attract brand litter. It’s not cheap, but they claim it is guaranteed to work in just this type of situation.


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