Very Important Question of the Day

Do cats’ poops smell worse when they eat wet food? You’d rarely smell Hubcap’s dookies, but Biscuit’s loafs sometimes overwhelm our one-bedroom apartment. Is it because we switched Hubcap to dry-only fairly early on? I mean, I’m seriously dying right now. A 6-month-old kitten shouldn’t be unleashing the intestinal weaponry of Jackie Gleason. It’s just not right.

p.s. When do you start calling kittens “cats”? Is the half year mark a good cut off or can I call her a kitten until her legs stop working?

p.s.s. Sorry haven’t had any Biscuit pics up lately. She took out our digital camera and we haven’t replaced it yet. Any recommendations? Want a compact one with fairly decent telephoto capabilities. We were pretty happy with the Sony Cybershot until she knocked it onto the floor for the third time. We’d like to replace it with something a little better.

Posted by Kevin K. on 01/07/10 at 09:12 AM • Permalink

Categories: Critters

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KK, my guys eat both kids of food, and their poop doesn’t smell at all unless a) they load up on human vittles or b) have the runs. Zero will occasionally lay down a real tear-starter if he’s eaten a bird or found the cheese, but that’s extremely rare.

(Of course, I probably have no idea how bad this place smells, since I live with up to eight cats at a time. Also, I use the quadruple-strength, neutron-activated odor-absorbing litter and an occasional spritz of anti-microbial air-deadener.)

As for the “cat” designation, it’s a judgment call. At about a year, they’re as big as they’ll likely get and their eyes and ears start to look proportional. That’s usually my cut-off. With a litter, I stop calling them kitties when they stop sleeping together in a pile and acting with a single brain.

Failing any of those milestones, I’d say wait till the first time you yell “Hey, Biscuit!” and instead of running to you she just gives you a look like, “Feh.”

PS: I’m a big Canon fan (which is what you become by default when you can’t afford a Nikon), but I’m strictly SLR so I’m not sure what they have available in a fixed telephoto. I’d also look at the Olympus line, which is usually uniformly good.

Plus, there’s nothing wrong with Sony and I’ve recommended the Cybershot(in 2006) as a fixed-lens at that price-point. I suspect they’ve improved the line since.

Well she hasn’t had the runs at all since we’ve had her and we don’t feed her any human food. Not sure what’s causing it. We had a few folks over for New Years and I thought one of them laid a bomb in our bathroom. I was trying to figure out which one of them it was until I realized it was Biscuit. How can something so small and so cute wreak (reek?) that much ass-havoc?

I have a Canon, which I like, but I’d consider a Panasonic ZS-1 if I were in the market now.

Comment by sean on 01/07/10 at 10:05 AM

I know nothing about cameras (point and shoot is my style) but I do know from kitty poops.  If the smell is that bad it’s possible she’s picked up an intestinal bug or that her food doesn’t agree with her.  If she’s not on a digestible natural style food you might try switching her.  And if things don’t go better soon a trip to the vet is probably in order.  She may need a round of antibiotics.

Marin, she’s got all of her shots and the vet’s seen her three times (including her getting fixed) and said she’s in perfect health. Maybe I’ll give him a call. We’re also feeding her pretty healthy stuff (Max Cat—wet and dry). Maybe that’s part of the problem. Perhaps it wouldn’t be an issue if we fed her gutbucket supermarket crap like Alleycat or whatever it’s called.

Kevin, our cat developed diabetes like Hubcap, and our vet said that the reason was dry food, which is too high in carbohydrates. And wet food caused her to produce nuclear fuel rods.

The covered box helped a little. You need a containment dome. And the sort of litter that has little green crystals in it, I forget what it’s called. Fresh Step?

So yes, a call to the vet might be in order, but sometimes a person just has to move to a house with a separate wing and an airlock.

My cat has always been stinky.  My best friend is the Arm&Hammer; baking-soda based kitty litter deodorant.  I sprinkle in before adding the litter.  Then again, I don’t live in a one-bedroom apartment and the box is pretty far away from our main living area.

While a vet visit would rule out anything untoward, if you’ve lived up to this point with a being whose shit don’t stink, consider yourself a lucky human :-)


Fuji F70EXR or F200EXR.

Incredible new CCD technology.

My cats occasionally get a smelly one past me (I feed them mostly Foster and Smith canned and some kibble to keep the choppers working), but I also vouch for the covered litter box. I have two in a one-bedroom condo (keep it in the laundry closet), and I only get overwhelmed by the kitty smells once in a great while.

Also, Strange? EIGHT cats? Jesus, why aren’t you a PUMA? ;)

I have two in a one-bedroom condo (keep it in the laundry closet), and I only get overwhelmed by the kitty smells once in a great while.

We only have one box, but it’s covered and in the laundry closet like you.

One extremely cute thing Biscuit does when I’m poop scoping her litter is she immediately darts under the lid like it’s a little house. And then after a little bit she comes out and swats at the scooper because she thinks it’s playtime.

Thx for the camera recs, everyone.

Kevin, in my experience its a kitten thing.  The smaller they are the stinkier their poops are, I have no idea why.  All of my adult cats get constant dry food and then wet food for dinner in the evening and when one of them uses the litter box you would never know it.  The kittens though, that is a different story, like you said how a thing so tiny could unleash that kind of smell is beyond me.  I reckon that it will get better as Biscuit gets older.

As for the camera I swear by my Sony DSLR but that may be too bulky for you.

Kevin, try some regular old human yogurt. She’ll love it and it will give her pretty little belly some culture. We went through this with lil Sammi for the first few weeks and the trip to the vet cost us the fee plus a four-pack of plain yogurt, it cleared her right up. Sometimes when they come from the shelter they get bad stomach bacteria and the yogurt provides the good kind. Again it worked like a charm with Sammers.

Kevin, my female cat (who is near 20 pounds—yikes!) was apparently notorious as the Poop Policewoman of the shelter—she would go in after other cats used the box and cover THEIR messes if she thought they hadn’t done a good enough job. Even now, she has her routine: she goes in the box, and if there’s anything there at all, she bangs on the lid and scratches around until I get it out. Then she does her business, bangs around and scratches until I clean up. Then she checks a THIRD time just to make sure I did it right. I should buy her white gloves or something.

(And yes, it is more fun to talk about cat poop that HCR, thanks for asking!)

Also, I don’t know if you use the kitty litter locker or not, but I got one and it’s a lifesaver. I use clumping litter and I hate having little baggies of cat crap in the kitchen garbage until I take it down two flights to the alley dumpster (no garbage chute in my building). The locker is kinda like a diaper genie (not that I would actually know about those, but I’m told) and it holds about a week’s worth of stuff in a sealed bag until you’re ready to toss it. It really doesn’t smell at all.

Comment by Oblomova on 01/07/10 at 01:25 PM

My cat’s breath smells like cat food.

yes. their farts are no treat either

It might be the soft food.  Our 3 have always had Max Cat dry, but getting the soft on a regular basis always seems to cause massive intestinal disturbances and the dreaded “greasy butt.”

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