Cat Smells Like Poop

Cats love grooming. It is the one thing they will constantly do faithfully and diligently other than sleeping and playing. Because of their obsessive approach to cleanliness, it is rare to find a cat stinking. But, in some cases, you might notice your Cat Smells Like Poop.

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It can be a scary experience because in most cases, the stench comes without any notice. Also, in some cases, the cat seems to be behaving fine but regardless of what you do, the cat smells like poop. Before you get alarmed by this, you should know that there are a couple of reasons why your cat might have developed the bad odor. If you can get to the bottom of the issue, you can easily get rid of it.


Change of Diet

These fuzz balls have a very sensitive stomach and digestive tract. They also tend to have a very unique dietary requirement and prefer to have foods that contain lots of meat, oils and fats. A cat can adapt very well to one meal but when it is changed, it can cause gas, diarrhea, flatulence and an unpleasant smell.

You should always feed your feline friend the best quality food that you can find on the market. Options like Purina cat food, Friskies cat food, Royal Canin cat food and Wellness Core cat food are great options to include in your cat’s food.

It is also important to make sure that you don’t make very drastic changes to the cat’s diet even when the change is necessary. If you recently changed diets and the bad smell started, you can try switching it back to see if it stops.

Dirty Litter

If your cat smells like poop, it could also be a problem of your own doing. It is important to keep the cat’s litter box clean just as it is important to have him on a well-balanced diet. Every few days, you should empty the litter box. Sometimes, if the litter box is too close to the sitting area, it can also stink which can be quite uncomfortable.

You have to make sure that you clean-up after the cat and also constantly refill the litter box. You might feel too tired to do this after work but always remember, it is easier to change the litter box than having to work on the entire house which will start smelling like poop as well.

There is the option of spending a little extra for an automatic self-cleaning litterbox . If you find that it’s a little too expensive, then you should invest in good quality cat litter granules. Low quality granules are unable to absorb the scent. 

Your Cat is Dirty

The bad smell could also be easily explained by your cat simply being dirty. Even though cats clean themselves thoroughly, sometimes especially when they have runny poop, it can stick on their fur and cause them to stink. This is more likely the case for cat breeds with long hair like the Maine Coon or the Persian. With that much amount of fur, it is guaranteed that they will attract some foul smelling particles.

If you suspect this could be the reason behind the foul smell, you can check the fur at its bottom for any poo or urine stains. One of the ways you can avoid this is by regularly trimming the fur around this area.

If you let your cat out to roam, then the chances of it coming back with a bad smell are significantly higher. It can roll in something nasty or catch the smell of a feral cat. Cats get bored easily if you don’t have enough toys to keep him busy and you have to let him roam in the yard, you should always make sure he is frequently treated for parasites like fleas and that you bathe him regularly.   

If you find this a challenge you can also take the cat to the groomers once in a while to get his hair trimmed. If you prefer to clean the cat yourself, you should make sure you use quality cat cleaning products. Cats are avid lickers and everything that goes on their fur will find its way to their system. You have to make sure that the cleaning products you use will be safe for the cat.

Infected Anal Glands

The reason your cat smells like poop might also be a health concern. Cats are very likely to develop issues with their anal glands which are usually located at the bottom just underneath the skin. There reasons for the infection are diverse but the result will usually be a strong poop like smell.

Once the glands have been infected, they start leaking and can even develop an abscess when the infection is more severe. In such cases, you will notice the cat constantly scooting on the floor and she may also have a very hard time when pooping. Other symptoms that might help you diagnose an anal gland infection is if the cat is constantly licking or biting its rear end.

Unfortunately, in this case, there is not much you can do for your feline friend. You just have to take it to the vet. He may be put on antibiotics and in some cases, the abscess could also be drained to relieve the cat of the pain. Treatment of the anal glands should take care of the stench even though it might take some time before it clears up.

As with any anti-biotic, if any is prescribed to your cat, you have to make sure the entire dosage is completed even if the cat starts getting better before the dose is complete.

How Can I Manage the Situation?

There is no question that your cat smelling like poop sounds like a very serious situation. Regardless of what is causing it, the most important thing is that you remain calm. Even though you can’t entirely rule out the chances of an anal gland infection, in most cases it is not going to be the cause.

You have to start by checking some of the other more manageable situations like a dirty litterbin and poop getting stuck on the cat’s fur.

Once you rule out these two as the reason why your cat smells like poop, and you recently changed the diet, you can try to change it back and see if the cat stops smelling. You may also want to give regular baths to the cat just to be double sure that this is the reason. If none of these works, then you will need to seek some professional help to have it checked for anal gland infection.

During the diagnosis period, it is important to stay calm. Your cat doesn’t like the foul smell any more than you and making it anxious will not help the situation.

Keeping your feline friend clean and happy is important to your comfort and their well-being. The poop smell can be as a result of negligence and not cleaning the cat litter properly. If you find this hard to do on a daily basis, you can buy automatic cat litters.


In most cases, the stench and discomfort can be well taken care off by regularly cleaning and grooming the cat. If medication will be given in the case of infection of the anal glands, you have to make sure that your pet takes the medication exactly as prescribed to avoid a recurrence of the infection.

Rebecca Welters

Yes, I am that weird cat lady with 200 cats and live in the darkest corner of the city where no one dares to go! Joking! But I am a cat lover and have 2 Ragdoll cats called Toby, he's 3 years old and Dory, she's 8 years old. I'm 36 years old and live in the quiet town of Washington.

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