Getting To The Bottom Of Things: Three Possible Reasons Why Your Cat Is Scooting On Its Butt

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Cats are usually pretty tidy, self-maintaining creatures, so noticing one suddenly scoot their butt across the floor can be quite shocking for cat owners. If your kitty is acting this way, rest assured that they're not doing it to purposefully cause damage to your home. Instead, your cat may be experiencing one of these three issues that are forcing them to take action the only way that they can. Read on to learn more about these health conditions.


Skin allergies can actually cause your cat to scoot across the floor. Skin allergies can affect any part of the body, but sometimes only the skin near the anus is affected.

When cats have a skin allergy, one of the first symptoms is often itchiness or irritation. Scooting across the floor is, in essence, an attempt to scratch what's itching. Thankfully, this condition can usually be treated by either eliminating the allergy or providing medication to treat said allergy. Talk to your veterinarian to run some tests to find out if your cat has an allergy to something in your home or environment.

Anal Glands

This is typically more of a dog problem, but cats can indeed have issues with their anal glands. When their anal glands become irritated, inflamed, or even infected, they can become very itchy and unpleasant for the kitty. Scooting not only helps to relieve this itch but can help to push fluid out of the inflamed sacs, reducing pain or discomfort in the area.

Anal glands can be expressed -- in other words, drained -- by your veterinarian. Doing so should help to immediately relieve your kitty's symptoms and they're unlikely to keep scooting afterward.


Finally, your cat may be having diarrhea. It's not always easy to tell, since clumping kitty litter can make urine and diarrhea look very similar. However, if your cat is having this problem, they may essentially be experiencing an acid burn on their behind.

When cats have diarrhea, sometimes stomach acid comes out with the poorly-digested food that they've eaten. This can burn and irritated surrounding tissues, making your kitty's behind hurt and feel itchy. Scooting not only eases the discomfort but can help to remove residue of the diarrhea, as disgusting as that sounds. Unfortunately, this variety of scooting can definitely cause some damage around the home if your cat is leaving behind fecal matter.

In the case of diarrhea, you need to see your vet. Diarrhea can cause dehydration or weight loss, and it can be due to a wide variety of health conditions.

The good news is, if your cat is scooting, it's unlikely to be due to a serious health risk. However, if your cat acts this way for more than a day, it's a good idea to reach out to a veterinary clinic like Oakton Animal Hospital to get treatment.