Behaviour problems like urinating on the curtains, aggression to other cats or people, and toileting on the bed, are common reasons for euthanasia of cats.
Our vets and nurses find it very hard to euthanase these healthy cats when many of these behaviours can be remedied if they are brought to us when they first start and before they become ingrained habits. Many perfectly normal cat behaviours are unacceptable in the domestic situation. Understanding this and providing a more enriched environment or improving resource access is often all that is necessary.
For example, inter-cat tensions can be defused if we recognise that cats like to have privacy when eating, drinking and toileting. This means that the bowls and litter boxes for each cat or family of cats in the household should be well separated, preferably in different rooms. Cats that groom each other and sleep touching each other regard each other as family. The odd one out requires separate bowls and litter.
Many indoor cats are anxious. Just spotting a strange cat out the window can make them anxious and set off a bout of urinating on the window, curtains or corner of the room.
To analyse and prevent these unacceptable feline behaviours from escalating we offer a behaviour consultation service. Any behaviour consultation takes at least five times as much time as a normal disease consultation or health discussion and examination. Our vets spend about an hour preparing material and reading your responses to a special survey we send out before meeting with you and your cat. The meeting takes about an hour and includes a full physical examination and blood tests to rule out medical causes of the behaviour. For example, some cats who urinate outside the litter box have diabetes, kidney disease or a urinary tract infection. After the meeting, the vet spends another 1-3 hours writing a report and recommendations individualised to your cat. Our vet will also call you to see how you are progressing and may recommend drug therapy in some cases. Understandably we require a deposit before such a consultation to cover the time your vet spends preparing to seeing you and your cat.