There are several causes for your cat to spray. Here are a few of the more typical reasons.
Cats spray to communicate with other cats in the household.
Cats converse with one another by spraying uric acid. Cats are often rather lonely animals, and even in homes with numerous cats, they will look for spaces to claim as their own. One cat in the home may spray pee if they believe another cat is invading their territory or attempting to remove their belongings (food, toys, cat trees, litter boxes, etc.).
Cats spray to communicate with neighborhood cats or stray cats.
Indoor cats that reside in an area with nearby feral cats may also spray. When there are cats outside the house, the indoor cat feels threatened in its territory and will spray to let the outside cat know the region is occupied. The purpose is to make the neighborhood cat feel less welcome.
Cats spray when they are stressed.
Stress can be exacerbated by adjustments to a cat’s routine or environment. While other cats may spray pee on vertical surfaces throughout the home when stressed, certain cats may urinate outside of the litter box. Changes in daily routine, the addition of new pets or family members, as well as activities like remodeling or construction, can all lead to stress.
Cats spray to attract mates.
Male cats who are intact (not neutered or fixed) are more likely to spray their urine, while female and neutered male cats can also do so. Intact male cats spray to communicate with nearby female cats or to attract mates.
Although it’s typical behavior for cats that live outside, it can be problematic if you have an intact male cat residing inside.
When cats attain sexual maturity, which occurs approximately 6 months of age, spraying of the urine is more likely to happen in both male and female cats.
While neutered and spayed cats can still spray, the likelihood of this happening decreases if the cat is in a relaxed setting and believes that their social and emotional needs are being satisfied.
Provide Stress Relief
By giving your cat extra attention, whether through play or petting, depending on what they prefer, you can aid in their relaxation. You can even get a second copy of your cat’s preferred toy or perhaps two of them along with some catnip.
Un-mark the Spot
Naturally, you must always tidy the designated area. The greatest kind of cleaning to use isn’t as obvious. Despite the strong smell of cat urine, you shouldn’t use a fragrant or strongly scented cleaning. Your cat can view the use of a cleanser with excessive fragrance as a challenge and mark the area again. Use an enzyme-based, odor-neutralizing cleanser instead.
Make the Marked Spot a Happy Place
Consider using the area again for play or cat feeding after the cleaner has finished and dried (at least temporarily). If your cat left a mark on an item, relocate it to a less accessible location or even temporarily store it. This will alter how your cat perceives the area and may lessen the likelihood of re-marking.
Get Your Cat Spayed or Neutered
The most trustworthy and efficient method to stop marking is this. The best course of action is probably to spay or neuter them if excessive spraying is starting to become a problem.
Close the Blinds
Cats vary in their level of territoriality. Don’t allow your cat view other cats through the window if they make them feel intimidated. Some pet networks and websites offer “cat TV,” which features footage of fish swimming or birds in a tree, if you wish to provide them with something else to watch as a substitute.
Change the Type of Litter
Given that cats can be extremely picky about the litter they produce, this can be a difficult matter. Consider switching to a different brand of litter or even purchasing a new litter box if you’ve done all the procedures above and your cat is still spraying to see if it will stop them.
Visit the Vet
If everything else fails, there are effective anti-anxiety drugs that can help your cat feel less stressed. The optimal course of treatment for your pet can be discussed with your veterinarian.
Although cat spraying can be upsetting for pet owners, following these instructions can help your cat revert to solely using the litter box as a place to urinate. Contact your veterinarian if your cat is still spraying to find out what is causing the habit.
Why doesn’t a cat urinate anymore?
We have numerous stray male cats living outside, and they prefer to stamp their territory on our patio door, screen, and house siding. Although I’ve sprayed white vinegar on these spots, they keep reappearing. It’s becoming a significant issue. We have indoor cats who have been successfully spayed and neutered. The ones outside are the ones giving you trouble. We enjoy their presence but dislike the marks on the house. Any suggestions?
We are in the midst of kitten season, and the number of stray animals is increasing alarmingly.
Calling for assistance is all it takes. In your neighborhood in neighboring Dauphin, a fantastic organization by the name of Angelpets wishes to assist. They’ll loan you traps, guide you through the procedure, and point you in the direction of free spay/neuter procedures.
One of several repellents is white vinegar, but few of them can deter testosterone-fueled tomcats hunting for girlfriends. Spreading coffee grinds, pipe tobacco, oil of lavender, citronella, or eucalyptus, sprinkling orange and lemon peels, or spraying with citrus-scented scents are other short-term remedies.
Alternately, you might place plastic carpet runners with the spike side up close to the regions they soil and bury them in your garden’s soil. Rue can also be sown or planted to dissuade some cats.
Remember that repellents are only a band-aid. Being proactive about trapping and neutering is the best long-term option, and it won’t cost you anything. Due to a lack of staff, charities like Angelpets are unable to dispatch volunteers to round up stray animals. The offensive spraying will stop if you put some time into the project.
Corson outlined the recent advancements in trapping techniques. For more seasoned strays who are wary of the traditional Hav-a-Hart trap, a lightweight “drop trap” has been devised. It is just as humane, but elevated so that the cat is more likely to go back to his or her usual eating location without stepping on the wire.
Simply keep an eye on the cat at feeding time and pull a string that is fastened to a pole as soon as it begins to eat.
Set up a time with Angelpets so the cat can be taken as soon as possible to a participating physician for a spay or neuter procedure.
The best way to catch scared cats is to establish a regular feeding routine and location. The majority of well-meaning people continuously leave food out. This makes trapping more difficult. Kittens are simple to trap, but clever mothers, grandmothers, and toms can present difficulties. Food should only be kept out for 30 minutes each day at the same time and location.
Corson makes a very good point when he says, “We thus need four hours to construct a drop trap. That’s preferable to investing 1,000 hours in each litter these feral cats have.”
Almost all neutered tomcats stop spraying immediately following surgery. The good news, then? You will still be able to visit your feline pals because they will be returned to the original colony, which is your neighborhood.
Additionally, if any of these stray animals are sociable, they may be given the opportunity to be adopted into a warm home. Please spare a moment to at least exchange a few words with the Angelpets staff. You’ll likely be pleasantly pleased by the thoughtful assistance they provide.
Do dogs and cats both spray?
Our canine and feline pets frequently spray or mark their territory, which can be damaging. Contrary to popular belief, dogs and cats occasionally mark their territory for other reasons besides mating and reproduction. You might be able to better understand your pet, his behavior, and how to deal with this annoying problem if you know why your pet is marking his territory.
Reasons Pets Mark
When they come across canines who are not locals to their environment, some male dogs will mark. This could be your house, your yard, a friend’s house, a park, or another spot that gets a lot of traffic. Dogs may mark when they come across a particular social trigger. A female dog in heat, a male dog, an area where other dogs have already marked, or the fact that your pet has become overstimulated in a social setting are some examples of these triggers.
The majority of cat lovers are aware that unneutered male cats mark their territory by spraying pee on walls, furniture, and other surfaces. But many pet owners are shocked when fixed males start spraying as well, or when spayed and un-spayed female cats both engage in this repulsive habit. Unfortunately, underlying medical disorders, litter box troubles, or anxiety can also cause cats to spray.
How to Stop Pets from Spraying
Male and female dogs and cats will frequently mark to let potential mates know they are still in reproductive health. Due of this, a lot of pet owners believe that spaying and neutering their animal will stop this tendency. Sadly, even transformed animals still find excuses to mark or spray. While neutering and spaying pets may lessen this tendency, this is not a foolproof solution. However, if your pet continues to mark or spray, further research is needed. Spaying and neutering dogs and cats does help minimize the need to mark or spray for reproductive reasons.
Pets may spray for one specific cause or multiple reasons at once. Simply retrain your dog to stop marking if it appears that they are doing it out of habit. This will require continual observation of him. Take him outside after verbally interrupting him when he lifts a leg to mark his territory, and urge him to do so there rather than inside. In order to prevent the habit of touching up their existing marks, it is also crucial to clean any areas that he has already marked with a disinfecting and deodorizing cleanser.
Anxiety is the main cause of cats’ marking behavior. This anxiety can arise from another pet that is “bullying the cat that is spraying, outdoor cats intruding on your cat’s territory by climbing up on windowsills, changes in habit, or nervousness induced by the condition of your cat’s litter box.
Do cats with collars spray?
Small quantities of pee are sprayed onto vertical surfaces. The spraying cat will typically approach the spot with its tail quivering, and urinate with little to no stooping. Although considerably less frequently, some cats will also leave little amounts of pee or even feces on flat surfaces to indicate their territory.
Why do cats “mark with urine?
Cats leave several signs at their residences and frequented areas. Cats not only mark with urine but also with smell glands on their feet, cheeks, face, and tail. Marking techniques include scratching (which leaves a visible mark as well as an odor from the glands in the footpads) and cheek rubbing (also known as bunting). The cat tells other animals that it was there even after it has left by leaving behind an odor. Cats use marking to communicate “ownership” and to promote their sexual receptivity and availability. Marking can happen while there are other cats nearby, whether they are outside or indoors in the same home. In times of stress or peril, cats will also mark their territory. Changes in household routine, composition, living arrangements, new residences, and other environmental and societal changes can all lead to this. In these situations, the cat may mark newly brought home items or family members’ things, particularly those with whom there is the most conflict or uncertainty. Urine is frequently discovered in conspicuous places, at points of entry and exit to the outside, such as doors and windows, and around the periphery because marking is a technique of establishing territory. When roaming free outside, cats frequently mark the edges of their property, noticeable features, newly added items (like trees), and areas where other cats have also left their markings.
Which cats are more likely to urine mark?
Cats can mark with urine, both male and female. Male cats that are intact (not neutered) and mark their urine frequently. When an intact male sprays pee, it will have the distinctive, potent “tom cat odor.” The cat’s motivation to spray may be lessened by castration or neutering, but 10% of neutered males and 5% of spayed females will still spray, on average. While cats in families with numerous cats are frequently engaged in spraying behaviors, cats kept alone may also spray.
I am finding small amounts of urine in multiple locations. What does that mean?
Some cats may leave little amounts of pee (and, in rare cases, stools) all over their territory as a form of territorial marking. These spots can be comparable to spraying spots (i.e., next to doors, windows, new items in the house, or favorite spots), but they can also appear on the owner’s clothing or other prized objects on occasion.
Small volumes of urine, on the other hand, are typically the result of either a lower urinary tract condition or litter box avoidance, which can have a variety of causes. Similarly, stools discovered outside of the litter box may have a variety of medical explanations, such as colitis, constipation, or any other illness that makes urination more challenging, frequent, or uncomfortable. A thorough physical examination and laboratory tests are required, just like with any other elimination problem, to rule out every physical cause.
How do I treat a spraying or marking problem?
The past will help identify the best course of action, as it does with any behavioral issues. Urine marking’s location, frequency, length, and number of places are all significant factors. It is important to count the number of cats inside and outside the house. Examining environmental changes, human and animal social behaviors, and alterations to the home, including the addition of family members, pets, furniture, and renovations.
“The location, frequency, length, and number of urine marking spots are significant.”
Castration is advised if the cat is not already neutered and is not intended for breeding. To rule out any underlying medical conditions, a urinalysis should be conducted. Determine the exact position of the pee stains. The little pee stains can be discovered in various places, or they can be found on walls that are 6 to 8 inches above the ground.
The goal of treatment is to make spraying less desirable. It has been demonstrated that assessing and enhancing litter box hygiene can sometimes reduce spraying. In a perfect world, there would be at least as many litter boxes as cats plus one, the litter would be cleaned every day and replaced at least once a week, and any areas that were sprayed with odor-neutralizing chemicals would be treated with the right products. Additionally, any elements that might be causing the cat to skip using its litter box should be taken into account.
For remote control devices and booby traps that can be used to deter outdoor cats and to keep indoor cats away from the areas where they are tempted to mark, the best options are to find a way to prevent the cats from entering the property or prevent the indoor cat from seeing, smelling, or hearing these cats if marking appears to be stimulated by cats outside the home. Keeping your cat indoors and away from windows and exterior doors may be beneficial. It may also be able to bar visual access to windows. You can give your cat restricted access to these areas when you are at home and in charge of it. Keeping windows closed and using odor neutralizers to any areas where outdoor cats have defecated or sprayed may also be required to prevent the indoor cat from smelling the cats outside.
It could be crucial to identify which cats do not get along if the issue stems from social interactions occurring inside the home. Keep these cats in separate sections of the house, each with a litter box and a place to sleep. The cats could be reintroduced if they are carefully watched over. It helps the cats become accustomed to one other’s presence, at least temporarily, by allowing them to interact for pleasurable activities like feeding, receiving treats, and playing. However, you will frequently see spraying and marking issues if a family has 7 to 10 cats.
I’ve cleaned up the spot, but the cat keeps returning to spray. What else can I do to reduce the problem?
It is understandable that the cat would want to refresh the area with further urine as the stench was being cleaned up since the goal of spraying is to mark a location with urine odor. Cleaning by itself doesn’t really stop spraying.
“If the function of the region is changed, cats that mark in one or two specific spots may stop doing so.”
If the purpose of an area changes, cats that mark in one or two specific places may stop. Cats are not likely to spray in their places for eating, sleeping, or scratching. Additionally, research has shown that cats are less likely to mark an area with pee or other substances after leaving cheek gland marks. In fact, it could be argued that cats who mark with their cheek glands do so in a calmer, more familiar way than cats who mark with urine, who mark in a more reactive, agitated way. Some cats can reduce urine marking by using the commercial product Feliway, which contains synthetic cheek gland fragrance. Spraying this substance on areas where cats have previously sprayed urine or on regions where it is possible to predict that the cat would spray may reduce the likelihood of subsequent spraying in such areas. Instead of urine spraying, the introduction of feline face pheromone may encourage cheek gland marking (bunting). For cats who mark many locations, it is available as a room diffuser that covers around 700 square feet or as a spray that may be applied specifically to the place where your cat sprays. In addition, it has been used to assist cats get accustomed to new situations, such as the veterinary clinic, and to calm them down while they are in them.
Wherever possible, giving some cats one or two spots to mark is a smart compromise. You can do this by tiling the space, hanging a shower curtain on the wall, or creating an L-shaped structure out of two plastic litter boxes (with the upright surface to catch the marked urine). Booby traps are another alternative, although with this one it’s possible that another area will also be sprayed.
Are there any drugs that are available to treat this problem?
Many pharmaceutical techniques have been attempted throughout the years to stop spraying practices. The options have concentrated on the assumption that anxiety and territorial rivalry are two root causes of spraying and marking behaviors. Because of this, antidepressants like clomipramine and fluoxetine have successfully been used to reduce marking in some cats. With variable degrees of efficacy, anti-anxiety medications including buspirone and benzodiazepines have also been utilized. The dosage, price, and likelihood of side effects must all be taken into account when choosing the best medication for your cat.