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Cats/Male changing litter habits


Dear Norman,  We have always had several cats in the home, all inside cats.  Three died within the last 1 1/2 years and the young companion to our eldest female passed on in December 2012.  Now we have one male, about 10 years old and the female, about 19.  We adopted a new cat in hopes of it being a companion for the elderly female. This new cat is about 1 1/2 years and very gentle. For the moment, it is staying by its choice in a downstairs room near the room with litter boxes for all cats.  Ahh..the male is refusing to go downstairs to the litter and has used potted plants!  I gave him a temporary box upstairs but he has not used it. He has only seen the new kitty and hisses. I believe once they are acclimated litter will be no problem. But for now, it is a huge problem!

What do we do to get these cats together and how to get the male back to using the normal litter box downstairs?  He seems afraid to venture down there because of the new kitty.  Believe me, he has nothing to fear but he does not know that.  Help!

BTW, I am an expert in Jewelry, Gems and Minerals on this site.

God Bless and Joy. I hope you can make suggestions.  Thomas.


Whenever a new cat comes into the household, it turns things upside down for a while.  This includes litter pan habits.

You can try the Cat Attract litter (available at pet supermarkets) in all boxes (just sprinkle it over the existing litter) and see how that works.

As far as cats getting to "like" each other, you just have to be patient and wait for them to sort out how they are going to interact with each other.  This "getting to know you" process can take weeks and even months, especially with their ages.  The best thing to do is to stay out of it and let them find their own way, which you seem to be doing. Any human intervention is usually counter productive.

Please keep me posted.

Best regards... Norm.  


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Norman Auspitz


I can answer most non-veterinary questions about cats. My particular expertise is pedigree cats, breeding and showing. However, I am versed in feline behavior, cat breeds and their characteristics, general feline husbandry, and the like.


I judged for the Canadian Cat Association from 1975 until 1982. I am currently an approved allbreed judge for the Cat Fanciers'' Association (the world''s largets cat registry), and have been judging for them since 1991. I have been breeding pedigreed cats since 1971 and have been exhibiting pedigreed cats in shows since 1970. I obtained my first pedigreed cat in 1970 and have never looked back. In 1971, I obtained my first Abyssinian which has become my primary breed. In addition, I have bred Manx and Persians. Currently, besides the Abyssinians, I am also breeding Maine Coons.

Cat Fanciers'' Association, inc. (CFA) and the Manx, Maine Coon, and Abyssinian breed councils. I am currently Abyssinian breed council secretary.

Cat Fancy Magazine, The Abyssinian Chapter in The Cat Fanciers'' Association Complete Cat Book, and Articles for various editions of The Cat Fanciers'' Association Yearbook

I received a B.S. from Drexel University in 1968, a M.Math from University of Waterloo, in 1970, a Ph.D. from University of Waterloo in 1975, and a MBA from McMaster University in 1980. I received my approved allbreed judging status in the Cat Fanciers'' Association in 1999.

Awards and Honors
We have produced a number of Cat Fanciers'' Association (CFA) National winning Abyssinian and Maine Coons. We have produced a number of Abyssinian and Maine Coon Distinguished Merit females (an award for a top producing cat), including the first Distinguished Merit Abyssinian in the red (sorrel) color. I am the CFA Abyssinian breed council secretary and belong and/or hold office in a number of cat clubs. I am also a member of the CFA Judges Association.

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