How to Keep My Cat Clean After She Uses the Litter Box

| May 9, 2014 | 24 Comments

TrufflesTruffles, pictured here, gets litter or bits of poop stuck on her back end and her mom is wondering what she can do about it.  Truffles’ mom and I exchanged a few e-mails (I suggested a diet change, as my experience has been with readers that there is a “sticky poop” issue when dry food is in the diet).  Please read our correspondence below and if you have any suggestions or tips, please feel free to comment!

“Jenny I am new to having a Ragdoll. I love her she is three years old  I have not had her that long. She is beautiful I named her Truffles like the chocolate. I live alone so I do not have a second pair of hands to help keep her clean when she poops sometimes she does not leave the kitty box behind sometimes either the poop or litter come out with her and stick to her hair.  I was wondering what is the best way to help her with this. I do not feel comfortable shaving her. She does not like me brushing her or trying to cut her hair in this area. I am finding in my area places that will help shave her or do any grooming want to do this during the week only. They say on Saturdays there are so many dogs that come in to the pet stores the cats do not do well. I work during the week. Do you have any suggestions. Thanks so much

Thank you for writing me back – I wanted to respond to your email and answer your question what kind of food I give my cat and if I used dry cat food I have been using wet food as her main food. The people that had her before used fancy feast can food. I like wellness or a wet food that is grain free like fromm or Evanger as long as the main food is real meat no by products. the dry food that I leave for her is called fromm grain free and I believe is a higher quality food the family that had her before told me they gave different kinds of wet and dry foods so she became use to trying different things meow mix was one dry food. and then a can of the fancy feast. I am trying to slowly change to the type of food I gave my cats before combo wet and dry but higher end. I have never used the raw food even though I have heard from some that raw is good for them I have seen the cat litter box called Breeze Tiddy Cat you have a pad on the bottom shelf and the pelets are larger I have not tried it though but I wondered if it would be better for a long haired cat I thought it may not stick to her hair as much. However the pan seems small for a larger cat. She is a joy to have. I do have a vet visit planned in a few weeks I love to look at floppycats on YouTube it is great to get ideas Thank you so much. for any suggestions on keeping her clean if the poop sticks to her hair. I am planning to get her shaved in this area to help her stay clean

Jenny, Thank you for all the information. I really do appreciate it. I mainly do give her wet food morning and night. I only have been leaving  a small amount of dry food for during the day when I am gone at work. I notice she does not eat to much of that she does like the wet food and she waits for that. Her poop has been normal when it comes out she is just not one that likes to bury it so I notice sometimes when she turns around in the litter box some may stick to her fur as she gets out and the first week I had her some of the litter stuck to her fur. She does not like to be brushed much and I do not know the best way to remove the litter or any little amount of poop that should stick to her fur  as I do not want her to consider the whole brushing idea as so unpleasant I have use a warm wash cloth but the whole idea of me cleaning her in that area does not make her happy. She is a very loving kitty though  I have seen the new Breeze kitty litter system by Tiddy cat I was wondering if this would be a good Idea to switch to as it is not sand/ clay litter  it is more larger pellets size  and may not stick to her fur as much.  Have you seen or tried  this kind of litter system. I think I mentioned I have a vet visit coming up and I could just ask the vet all these questions but I really like all your Floppycat reviews and video’s and info and you have ragdoll cats thank you for all the time you have taken with my questions.”

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Category: Cat Grooming, Health Care, Poo

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About the Author ()

Hi, I’m Jenny Dean, creator of Floppycats! Ever since my Aunt got the first Ragdoll cat in our family, I have loved the breed. Inspired by my childhood Ragdoll cat, Rags, I created Floppycats to connect, share and inspire other Ragdoll cat lovers around the world,

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  1. Well I can feel your pain. One of my two kittens also gets poop on his fur. It’s especially pleasant when he curls up next to me at night and I get that whiff! I use World’s Greatest Litter and it never sticks to the fur. BUT what I have done is trimmed the hair around his butt and it helps a lot. I’m not saying to shave just a good trim. I also use baby wipes on his butt when there is some wet stuff still there. He’s used to me wiping him now. It doesn’t always happen but more than I would like. Drives me batty as he always has soft poops a couple times a week.When he was a younger kitten, he’s 11 mos now, he would step in it! He also never covers his poop and seldom his pee. What’s up with that! I am convinced he eats stuff, paper, whatever that may be causing this. I also feed him high quality grain-free wet food and hardly any dry, maybe a tablespoon a day. He’s a food thief so I can NEVER leave anything out!

  2. Hi, Jenny!

    Thanks for sharing Truffles’ story. I think this is a very common issue with all fluffy bottomed kitties and doggies!

    First, lurve that picture of Truffles. Lurve the name, too! She is even more beautiful than a Chocolate Truffle (and, believe me, I think Chocolate Truffles are among the most beautiful sites in this world!)! 🙂

    Second, we have this problem occasionally with Miss Pink Sugar. That’s why we keep her fluffy bottom (including the part of her tail that also gets “that trouble”) trimmed about every 45 days. She doesn’t like to be trimmed in that area but she tolerates it because she’s such a trusting and remarkably patient kitty. It’s easier to do the trimming every 1.5 months than it is to try and clean her up when she encounters “that trouble.” BUT, it’s definitely a two person job to get her trimmed. 🙂

    My sweet hubby (aka in our house as The Cat Whisperer) cradles her and talks softly to her while I go in with our special Pink Sugar Trimming Scissors and get the fluffy hair trimmed down close to her body on her rear, upper rear legs in the back and the bottom part of her tail near her backside. I work fast with determination, precision and soft prayers to get it all done before she’s decided that she’s endured enough. Bless her heart for being so cooperative and patient and trusting. <3

    Big hugs!

    Patti & Pink Sugar 🙂 <3

    • Caroyn Parisi says:

      Thank you for your comments and letting me know you think Truffles is beautiful. I appreciate it. She is very sweet and fun to have. Thank you for all your help and I think Truffles is feeling more at home now Carolyn

    • Dementia Boy says:

      Dear Miss Patti: For once I’m going to be serious (I HATE that!!). I think you and the Cat Whisperer have discovered the secret to all things feline: “I work fast with determination, precision and soft prayers to get it all done before she’s decided that she’s endured enough.”

      I have discovered with cats that s/he who hesitates is lost–and often left with scratches and bites =). Just get in there and do it. Sometimes you don’t know what you’re going to do, so do a reconnaissance mission first. If it’s not an emergency (choking, foreign object in eye, for example), you can wait a while between the reconnaissance and the actual project. In fact, you’ll probably have to, as the reconnaissance is about as much as a cat will endure, particularly of her nether regions =).

      • Aw, DB, thank you so much for the reassurance and support! Your comments made me smile and nod and feel great! 🙂 <3

        Big hugs, head butts and purry cuddles!

        Patti & Pink Sugar 🙂 <3

        P.S. The Cat Whisperer is strutting around like he knows everything now. It won't be long before our adorable and mischievous (and frighteningly intelligent!) Miss Pink Sugarbelle Fluffypants brings him crashing back to reality. lol 🙂

  3. Robin says:

    Yes, sometimes Ariel gets a bit of kitty litter on her butt. Like Patti, I trim her, but my trimming is not really up near her butt, but lower near her “bloomers.” She has totally fuzzy bloomers that are much easier to deal with when they are shorter. Yes, it is a two-person job. I trim her monthly. When I got her (as an adult) she had severe vomiting problems, due to her food and her hair consumption. We got both items straightened out, and now we are all delighted! I am not afraid to brush out any litter she gets on her bottom, which isn’t that frequent. It only takes a second, and she’s fine with it. I certainly wouldn’t want her to lick it off and eat it! YUCK!

  4. Teresa says:

    Think this is pretty much a universal problem In long hair kitties that we just have to help them with by doing little trims here and there. I have noticed it more in my sepia than in my lynx or the Maine Coon and believe it is because her fur is so fine. Laxatone added to her food occasionally helps together with an occasional trim.

  5. Ruth says:

    I was going to ask the exact same question!!! Thank you for asking the question and posting it up Jenny! Truffles is so pretty!

    I recently got my little Mille (15 weeks old chocolate point girl)and she’s been getting some poopie stuck on her fur. I tried to clean it with earthbath cat wipes but she really dislikes me cleaning her butt. She’s not very good at cleaning herself, sort of gives up halfway and falls asleep. I will try giving her fur a trim and hope it helps! She sleeps with me and likes to lie near my face (on my face) so having a dirty bottom is really not hygienic =/. Thanks for all the great advice everyone!

    I’m using OZ-pet cat litter and there is no tracking as the pellets are quite big, crumbles when wet. However, it is hard to find this litter outside of Australia (I had to cart a 15kg bag home to Singapore..haha..airline staff gave me a weird look). I am slowly transiting her to Nature’s variety instinct wet food which is probably why her poop is a little soft.

    I’ve learned so much form the articles here Jenny, really appreciate your effort in maintaining this website! Love the product reviews too! Been purchasing the toys and accessories that can be shipped to Singapore.

  6. Caroyn Parisi says:

    Thank you for your idea of trying Oz Pet Cat Litter it is always helpful to have the name of good products in case one does not work later on.

  7. Tash and Tahj says:

    Just a quick reply as Tahji, my 4 month old blue-point, is happy-pawing my typing arm madly!
    I also use Oz Pet and LOVE it! Other than the occasional piece picked up and tossed for playing with (!), it has not escaped the box in the 6 weeks I’ve used it! Tahj has only had the one poo stick to his coat and it was a nightmare to get off despite being firm. He had to have a little bottom bath and then a good brushing to make him feel better! I guess it comes with having such a beautiful coat!

  8. Deidre says:

    I, too have the poopy bottom issue with Giorgio and I basically just wash his bottom end with wet paper towel and a bit of lather made with warm water and bit of kitten shampoo. I find the Earth bath wipes too dry for this job, plus they are quite expensive. Giorgio doesn’t mind the clean up. In fact, he is quite patient and just purrs while I do it. I brush out the hair once he dries off. I’m thinking once it’s really hot here, I might try giving him a full bath every now and then. He is a most patient and calm boy.
    I was thinking that perhaps, I should try a different litter. I also use World’s Best and I have loved it for many, many years with my other cats, but I’m noticing that it doesn’t seem to clump up like it used to. It tends to get “muddy” and I think this is a contributing factor to the poopy bottom problem.

  9. Alora says:

    OH MY GOSH.. THANK YOU

    Its so good to know this is an issue with others. We just got our first fluffy cat. Bear is only 14 weeks old and we have had him for only a week. He will not bury his poop or pee and is always coming out of the cat box with poop on him. This whole week I have had to Wash his bottom several times and his little feet AND he has kitty claws. I am covered with scratches. Poor thing I think I have tramatized him. But I love him so much. It is 2:30 am and he is asleep on my stomach and I don’t want to disturb him to go to bed.
    I soo hope this gets better. I will be getting some wipes and crossing my fingers.
    (I actually take him back to the cat box and move his little paws to “show him” how to bury his poop, not sure if this is good or bad)

    Bears Mom

    • Ahhh I know how you feel! I wrote above what I do. One other thing…and it’s pretty easy…is to clip Bear’s nails. Do it when he is sleepy. Sometimes it’s easier than other times but I remember the poop getting under Finn’s nails so that’s when I started trimming them! Double yuck! I just buy the unscented Huggies Baby Wipes. I had even tried washing the feet and that was a major disaster!. Finn still won’t cover his poop or pee and he just turned 1 year. The other kitten spends hours covering. It is so weird. Then I think at times I traumatized poor Finn because I would scoop him out of the litter box as soon as he pooped so he wouldn’t walk in it! I was so sick and tired of cleaning him up and the bathroom at 11pm! This went on for a few months I hate to tell you. Now he has pretty normal poops most of the time and he doesn’t walk in it. It will pass. So cut his nails, trim his butt and get those wipes ready! Good luck.

  10. tooti says:

    My adorable and playful ragdoll kiten gets his poop in his bottom hair as well. I wash him sometimes 3 times a day, sometimes every other day. He’s been under water a lot for this. I’m afraid I have to separate with him because this problem is not going away. He gets to sit on the furniture with the bottom like that and I’m not always home. It’s very very very sad for me. He doesn’t arch his back when he poops I’ve noticed. He just sits in the litter and this is how poop gets stuck to him since he doesn’t raise his bottom like normally cats do. He does clean his bottom though grooming wise, but not right away when he jumps out of litter box. Because first he goes straight to the couch. He grooms only after play, before he falls asleep. He is on Orijen dry. Canned Orijen and raw meat -no help. I’m really desparate with him….. please help, what should I do. Clipping will deprive him of all his beauty….

    • Jenny says:

      Please read this post and see if getting him off dry food will alleviate the issue. This problem is SOOOO COMMON with cats on dry food. http://www.floppycats.com/cat-poop-talk.html

      You said he’s on canned Orijen? Didn’t think they made a canned version. Just checked their website – I don’t see any canned food listed.

      Please also read catinfo.org to learn about feline nutrition with potty issues.

      • tooti says:

        Thank you so much Jenny! I hope this will save him! I’ll try only canned food and will observe him. The cans I had were GO!, not Orijen, you are right. I bought them at the same time and forgot it was GO!
        The other concern with him I have is about calcium. All cat’s food I see is deboned, but naturally they eat mice with bones. My kitten is the happiest if I do give him cat’s canned dry milk (diluted). I’ve noticed a big difference, he is 100% calmer, more relaxed. Without milk he is more into rough behavior like tendency for biting, attacking feet when walking, doesn’t like to be held, kind of more on a wilder side.

        • Jenny says:

          Cool, I hope it does the trick. Has he been neutered? If so, then he’s been on antibiotics and therefore might benefit from a probiotic. I just did a video on the one we use here:

          I don’t know anything about the dry milk thing – never heard of it. But maybe if you sprinkle it one the wet food and add water to the food like I do in the video above, that will help?

  11. tooti says:

    Thank you thank you SO much Jenny! My kitten is 12 weeks only and he was dewormed before with 2 diffrent a/bs. I’ll try the probiotics! I want to try very hard to make him better, hope your advises will help.
    You video is so wonderful.. Charlie looks sooo.. beautiful-awesome and healthy, stanning!!!
    What kind of brand food he likes? I should probably give my kitten exactly the same. Do they need anything else beside canned wet food and probiotics?

    • Jenny says:

      Hi Tooti,

      I do not pretend to be a cat food expert. But I do believe dry food is not a good food for a cat. Did you read catinfo.org? I have a page here that explains what I feed my catS: http://www.floppycats.com/best-canned-cat-food.html

      If he is only 12 weeks old – he is just a baby. Be sure to transition him slowly to new food, etc. and be patient with him. He needs to grow into his body, etc….and if you need to trim his bottom hair until the poop situation is under control, then I would do that for peace of mind – just be sure not to cut his skin if you trim the hair yourself.

      Hope that helps,
      Jenny

  12. tooti says:

    Thanks a lot Jenny! It’s awesome, I’ll be going through all information! My kitten is already happier behavior wise off dry food for one day. He loves canned food and raw meat. He looks more satisfied after eating it and doesn’t make any noise in the kitchen as before crying for something else as he did on dry Orijen. I should get better at nutrition skills with him, learn how to add all those vitamins and supplements to his meals. His eyes don’t have today in the corners dark build up he always had on dry food. Still had to wash him today, though probiotics coming soon on Prime order…

    • Jenny says:

      YAY! Thanks for the update! So glad he is happier – sounds like his hunger is much more satisfied. Ah yes, the eye gookies! I forgot about those! Hopefully, in a few days you won’t have to wash him, as his system readjusts to the moisture!

      • tooti says:

        Dear Jenny,

        I was able to keep my kitten. He is so much better with all his parts clean after going to the litter box. I still keep checking him though when he comes out from that area but he stays solid clean. I didn’t cut any of the fur, just had to wash him first couple days and lately he looks more furry there and fine. I did switched him from dry foods right away after your advise and we went “cold turkey”, he didn’t mind at all and seemed to love it. I got lucky with him that he loves to eat. I give him 1/2 raw rabbit and 1/2 can food + probiotics and vits. He’s grown so much on this and is quite happy, nice and mellow. Today he ate a few tiny pieces of dinasaur kale that fell on the floor accidentally. I might add very little of those leaves to him sometimes.
        Thank you again for all your advises!!!

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