Get Your Cat Neutered
In most cases, cats that spray are unneutered males. Getting your kitten neutered could prevent them from spraying in the future, but it is worth noting that this isnt a failsafe preventative measure. Some neutered cats continue to spray throughout their lives, while most will continue to spray for a few weeks or even months after the procedure, as hormone levels normalize.
Its Possible That Your Cat Is Spraying Due To Medical Issues
Each time our pet exhibits a change in behavior, it is critical to rule out any medical causes for the change. This holds true for spraying as well because it could be triggered by a bodily discomfort that causes anxiety. This suggests that the cat may spray urine as a result of becoming stressed out by something.
Additionally, a medical condition may induce pain, causing the cat to adopt a spraying position in order to urinate more effectively. Another possibility is that cats who are ill are not spraying at all, but are instead peeing in other locations.
For example, urinary tract irritation might increase the frequency & urgency with which you need to go to the bathroom. This has the potential to cause a cat to use the litter box outside of the house.
Cats suffering from diabetes, thyroid disease, and kidney problems may drink more and pee more frequently. Aside from that, old age can make it difficult for a pet to make it to the litter box on time.
This is why cat owners must always take their cats to the veterinarian to confirm that there isnt a medical issue causing the behavioral change. A health assessment, urinalysis, and another medical testing will be performed to see if the behavior is caused by a medical condition.
Problem: Your cats habits have changed, and pee has been discovered in various locations throughout the house. In some cases, the urine has a distinct odor or contains blood.
Correcting Neutered Cat Spraying
Correcting cat spraying takes time, so be patient. Try to increase playtime with your cat, reduce stress and enrich your catâs environment. In multi-cat households, provide high perches and cat trees to increase vertical space. Never punish your cat for spraying because that will only cause more stress and it could lead to even more spraying.
See your veterinarian and make sure that your catâs spraying is not related to a health issue. Neutered male cats are prone to bladder and urinary tract problems. Thatâs because the male cat has a longer, slimmer urethra than a female cat. Neutering a male cat can narrow the urethra, even more, making blockages more likely. If your veterinarian rules out a medical cause for your catâs spraying, ask for suggestions on how to better deal with the behavior. Your cat may need to be on an anti-anxiety medication.
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What To Do When Your Cat Is Spraying Your Other Pets
If youre having trouble getting your pets to like each other, theres probably a good explanation. Ultimately, if youve had your cat for a while now, and you recently decided to get another pet, then your cat is probably going to feel jealous. And when your cat feels jealous, you guessed it! Its going to spray.
Unfortunately, its probably going to spray your poor, unsuspecting new pet. The best thing you can do to prevent the problem is to slowly introduce your pets to one another. Bring in your new pet and pet your cat while its getting to know its new friend.
You need to show your cat that things arent going to change around the house.
Unfortunately, most people get overly excited when they bring in a new pet, and they forget this step. They play with the newcomer and neglect their cats. Once that happens, you can expect quite a bit of spraying as soon as you leave the room.
However, theres no need to panic if youre one of those people. There is still something you can do to fix the problem.
Basically, you have to keep your pets apart for a few days. Go about your day like you never even brought in a new pet. Give your cat plenty of love. Then, when things have cooled down, you need to re-introduce your pets to one another. Just as if they were meeting for the very first time.
Only this time, try out our method. If your cat sees that youre not about to ignore it because of the new pet, you wont have to worry about spraying.
Reacting To Other Felines
If you live in a house, you most likely have a few stray cats lurking around the neighborhood. Even if you may not see them, trust us your cat can definitely sense when there is an unfamiliar feline nearby.
Basically, cats will spray around doors and windows to mark their territory and tell the other cats that they are on another felines turf. In fact, you could even say that spraying is the feline version of putting up a keep-out sign.
However, its not uncommon for strays to leave some spray of their own, especially if they want to provoke your pet. No matter whos doing the spraying, though, its you who will be left with a smelly door!
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Is It A Common Problem
In the neutered population it is estimated that 10% of males and 5% of females engage in urine spraying. The incidence of urine spraying in a household is directly related to the density of the cat population. The likelihood of urine spraying increases in direct proportion to the number of cats within a household, to as much as 86% with 7+ cats .
Is There Anything I Can Do While I Am Waiting For A Referral
Once you have seen your vet about this problem then the best advice is to wait for the behaviourist to assess your specific situation and recommend changes that are tailor-made to suit the needs of your particular cat and its circumstances. However, there are a few general things that may help in the meantime:
- Clean sprayed areas with 10% biological washing powder solution, rinse thoroughly before drying and spraying with surgical spirit
- Place new feeding stations at sprayed sites and put a portion of your cats normal daily ration in these areas
- Alternatively, use Feliway® spray to treat sprayed sites, according to the manufacturers instructions
- Use Feliway® diffuser to help reduce stress and anxiety
- Provide safe indoor litter trays one for each cat in the household plus one extra. Distribute these trays in different locations in the home, away from food, water and cat beds
- If you have a multi-cat household, ensure ALL resources are provided to the same formula
- If full-length curtains have been targeted, once cleaned, consider pinning them up temporarily to avoid repeated spraying
- If your cat has ever seen strange cats outside through full-length glass doors or windows then place static, opaque plastic film, or cardboard, over the lower section so they cant see out and cats outside cant see in
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Common Reasons Why Cats Spray
Territory: Spraying is one way cats mark their turf, especially if another cat is lurking around and leaving their own mark in your yard. Even if your cat never goes outside, theres still the possibility that they will see or smell the intruder, and then spray around a door or window in response.
Conflict: In multi-feline households, spraying can also be a way for cats to draw boundaries, establish pecking order, and settle disputes.
Change: Moving to a new place, a home remodeling project, changes in routine, or the arrival or loss of a human or pet sibling can all make a cat feel insecure and stressed. The changes dont have to be big, either. Even moving around the living room furniture can upset a more sensitive kitty. Spraying is just one way for a stressed cat to show their stress.
Mating: Both female and male cats spray although unneutered males are more likely to leave their mark as a way to let the opposite sex know theyre available . Even if your spraying cat is spayed/neutered, if the procedure was done later in life, this could be a learned behavior theyve carried over from their previous fertile days.
The Reasoning Behind Cat Spraying
You may not have known this, but cats can tell the age and sex of other felines just from the spray. Neutered male and female adult cats can spray under certain circumstances, however, un-neutered cats are usually the ones that produce the smelly discharge.
When it comes to males, the pheromones that are released with the spray indicate whether the cat is ready to mate.
On the other hand, when a female un-neutered cat sprays, its usually because its on its cycle.
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Stop Your Cat From Spraying In The House With These 6 Tips
You love your frisky feline companion, and you treat them like a member of the family. But one thing you dont love? Coming home to the pungent odor of cat urine and unsightly splashes on your furniture, walls, and doors. Have you ever found yourself asking, Why is my female cat spraying all of a sudden? Were here to help you unravel the mystery, so you can put down the scrub brush and spend more time playing with your cat rather than scolding them. Lets find out the answers to important questions like When do male cats start spraying? And, most importantly, How can I make it stop?
Spraying Solution #: Curb The Stress
If youve recently moved, it may take some time for your cat to feel comfortable in his new home. Start by providing small boundaries for him, perhaps giving him one room.
If a new person has been introduced into the family, make sure to give them and your cat plenty of time to bond.
In addition, pheromone therapy can produce wonderfully calm behavior in cats. I use this diffuser from Feliway in my house. It emits pheromones that mimic those of a nursing cat mother, calming your cat naturally.
For more about pheromone therapy, see this post from Dr. Liz Bales, the Cat-vocate.
Other natural and effective therapies that can be used during transitional periods include Zylkene. This capsule is lactose-free and contains a naturally soothing milk protein. Its safe for both short and long-term use, so its perfect if your cat just needs to get over the hump or if the situation is long-lasting.
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How To Handle Cat Spraying
Keeping the house clean can be a challenge for anyone who owns pets. Theres nothing worse than getting home after a long day at work to a terrible odor or mess on the floor. Spraying is one of the most common behavioral problems in cats, along with scratching. But while your first instinct may be to discipline your cat for this undesirable behavior, keep in mind that she is predisposed to this practice, and it should be redirected.
Why A Neutered Cat Sprays
Your neutered cat spraying may be caused by changes in your catâs environment. Things, like moving to a new home or adding a new pet to the family, can be very disruptive and stressful to a cat and spraying could be his reaction to this situation.
A neutered cat who sprays may also be marking his territory. This is especially true when there is an unspayed female or another male cat in the home that hasnât been neutered. Your cat may even spray when he detects the presence of another cat outside your home.
Cat spraying could also be a response to litter box issues. Your cat may be unhappy with the type of litter you are using or he may not like the location of his litter box. Or, he could be reacting to litter box odors that you canât even smell. So clean your catâs litter box once or twice a day. Wash out the litter box and replace the litter once a week. Also, make sure that you have enough litter boxes in your home. You need one litter box per cat, plus one. Make sure that the litter box is located in a private, low-traffic area.
Your neutered cat may be spraying because he is stressed. To learn more about the causes of stress in cats and what you can do to help, go to 14 Things That Stress Cats Out!
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Cats Spray To Attract Mates
Urine spraying is more common with intact male cats, but female and neutered male cats can do it as well. Intact male cats spray to attract mates or communicate with female cats in the vicinity.
Its normal behavior for cats living outdoors, but it creates some issues if you have an intact male cat living indoors.
Urine spraying is more likely to occur in both male and female cats when they reach sexual maturity, around 6 months of age.
While spayed and neutered cats can also spray, its less likely if the cat is in a stress-free environment and feels that their social and emotional needs are being met.
Spraying Reason #: New Pets
In Maxs case, it wasnt just that we had moved into a new apartment, it was also that he was sharing this new space with two other male cats. And while they werent new to him, he felt it important to stake out his turf in our new digs.
If youve recently adopted a cat, dog, or another animal, your cat may simply be wanting to establish that this is his territory.
And, if youve thought sharing a litter box was fine, think again! Cats actually need a lot more bathroom space than theyre often given. Just how much? Dr. Liz Bales, recommends one litter box per cat, plus one. So if you have two cats, you need a total of three litter boxes.
Check out the rest of her litter box secrets here.
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How Can I Tell If My Cat Has A Litter Box Problem Or A Communication Problem
It takes a bit of detective work to determine whether your cat has a litter box problem or is urine marking. Cats who urine mark also use their litter boxes for voiding, so urine in the litter box does not rule out marking outside the box. But urine marking deposits are usually qualitatively different than inappropriate eliminations outside the box.
The following is a list of characteristics that indicate urine marking:
- Urine marks are usually deposited on vertical surfaces. Marking on a vertical surface is known as spraying. When spraying, a cat usually backs up to a vertical object like the side of a chair, a wall or a stereo speaker, stands with his body erect and his tail extended straight up in the air, and sprays urine onto the surface. Often his tail and sometimes his entire body twitch while hes spraying.
- Urine mark deposits often have less volume than voided deposits. The amount of urine a cat sprays when hes urine marking is usually less than the amount he would void during regular elimination in his box.
- The urine smells pungent. The reason cats can learn so much from the urine mark of another cat is that a urine mark isnt just urine. It also contains extra communication chemicals. Those chemicals smell pungent to people.
There are also certain characteristics of a cat or a household that can contribute to urine marking:
Spraying Solution #: Switch To Worlds Best Cat Litter
If youve been following me for a while, then you know I absolutely love Worlds Best Cat Litter. Their Attraction Action® Formula is specifically made for kitties who are having trouble or just flat out refusing to use the litter box. This high-performance litter has a natural, plant-based additive that safely draws your cat to the box. So if your cat is spraying indoors, try Attraction Action® to end the problem.
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Why Do Cats Pee In The Bed
From a cats point of view, a bed makes the perfect toilet because it is absorbent and clean however, a cat may be using your bed for several other reasons:
: Its comforting for the cat to mix her scent with the humans scent if, for example, her parent has been gone for too long, she might be soothing herself.
Confrontation: If a new significant other is sharing the bed, the cat might be sending a message.
Stress: If the cat doesnt feel safe in the house because of renovation work, new people or another unexpected change, she may choose to stay in the bedroom for safety reasons.
Unacceptable litter box: If the cats toilet is dirty or set at a new location, shell look for a new spot and the bed meets the requirements.
What Are The Signs That My Cat Is Ready To Spray
Spraying is not the same as urinating, as previously noted. When your cat has to urinate himself, hell stoop down.
Watch alert if you observe your cat twitching his erect tail and pounding the ground with his rear legs!!
This is a warning indication that your cat is preparing to spray his fragrance. Normally, a cat sprays on a vertical surface like a wall or a door. However, pee spray may be seen on garbage bags or at a cat flap.
Although the volume of pee splashed is usually minimal, the odor may be just as irritating. Once your cat has sprayed pee in an area, he will likely return to use it as a toilet or to scent mark it.
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