Our house has been pee and spray free (except in the litterboxes) since April 17, 2012. Until this week! I am pretty upset. JP is up to his old habit. He was crying in the kitchen after dinner, which means he's still hungry. So...I did what Dr. Radosta suggested and let him sit in there and cry. So, do you know what he did? He marched into the living room where my husband and I were watching the debate on TV, climbed up the spiral staircase and sat himself down in the bed on top and just peed away! He showed us to ignore his cries! He's done this before. He eats, then goes back in the kitchen and cries until I feed him again and if I don't he sprays or pees - usually in the living room.
So why did I let him do it again? I knew Dr. Radostas advice to ignore his cries wasn't working for us, but I had a momentary lapse of reason. I thought to myself, maybe Dr. Radosta was right. Also...and here's some important news...he's HUGE! Lately I've been feeding him as much as he wants so that he doesn't fight with INKY or pee outside the box. This routine, combined with the prozac (groan) he has been on since January has caused weight gain. He gained 2 lbs since the beginning of August bringing him up just over 16 lbs. Inky also weighs about 16 lbs, but he holds it better. So, a week or 2 ago I started limiting JP's food intake a little bit. I guess he is not happy about that.
The other development on the JP behavior front is that he and INKY scuffle on a daily basis. They wrestle before every meal and the worst is early in the AM. I am seriously sleep deprived. Recently JP has started chewing on aluminum foil that I keep in the closet (a hold over from the peeing in the closet days that I really hope are ancient history because I have now removed all of the foil). After JP is done with his meals he returns to the scene and bites INKY (occasionally Spike too) and mounts him. He used to do this to Scooter! This is disturbing me a bit.
So last night I contacted one of my heroes Pam Johnson-Bennett. I asked her if this is a dominance issue or what and how to deal with it. Pam is THE BEST! If you have feline behavior issues you need to hire Pam! Just do it. Worth the money and saves a lot of time and heartache!
Pam mentioned a few interesting things:
1) it could be dominance but it could also be frustration
2) I shouldn't cut down on his food too drastically!
3) I should feed JP more often so his belly feels more full (Spike would LOVE that too!!!)
4) I should use puzzle feeders to slow him down and get him focused on working for his food - and feed him away from INKY
5) I should be sure to engage in interactive play with JP every day
Well, some of this stuff isn't new to us. But, as always, Pam has brilliant suggestions based on her extensive knowledge and experience.
So...here's what happened at dinner tonight.
JP and INKY started wrestling so I knew it must be feeding time. I dug up an old wand toy. INKY never seemed to like it. JP actually started going for it!! A miracle. Every day I try to engage JP with a toy and he is either not interested or INKY comes over and ruins everything. After a while I grabbed the other toy that INKY likes and tried to engage him at the same time. This little bit of playing with each of them seemed to work because they didn't try to beat each other up while I was preparing their meal.
Yes, I'm writing a lot. Is anyone still reading?
The next thing that happened is rather unfortunate. While feeding the boys, I pulled out the muffin tin to put JP's food in (closest thing I have to a puzzle feeder for wet food at the moment - yes I ordered 2 online this afternoon. I do what Pam says!) the sound of pans knocking scared the bajeezus out of JP and he ran, kicking his prozac bowl across the kitchen. Then he went in the other room to start eating INKY's prozac! Nooooo! I was quite frazzled.
By the time I got his food in the pan, he was suspicious and didn't eat much. I ended up putting his food back in his regular bowl. Now as I sit and write this, JP has reemerged for a second helping. I must heed his cries immediately. You understand?