There is nothing worse than a cat that sprays urine inside the house. Cats will often spray on the doona /carpets/couch /clothes and other furniture the smell is odorous and hard to remove.

Why do cats urinate inappropriately?

The main reason cats urinate inappropriately is stress/anxiety. This is not sex related -both sexes can be equally anxious. This may be due to another cat /cats in the house or outside the house[ie neighbourhood cats] Cats are very particular about who their friends are and although we would like to choose them for them often this does not happen. It may be due to a newcomer [person /new dog] to the house .It may be that this cat is new to the household and this change is making him anxious. It may be that you have decided to make this cat an inside cat and he is desperate to go outside No matter how relaxed the offending cat may seem to us there is usually something bothering him.Sometimes the reason the cat is anxious is not obvious to the owner ,your vet may be able to help with this However, before the cat is labeled anxious and stressed it is a good idea to have the vet check that he/she does not have a urinary tract infection.

How can we stop it?

1) Litter

Make sure you are changing the litter regularly and that you haven’t changed the type of litter -sometimes-new kittens do not like your type of litter because its not what they are used to -check with the breeder or pet shop etc as to what they were using. Sometimes using more than one strategically placed litter tray helps.

2) Environmental enrichment

This may help in multicat households -provide save high areas [with a blanket for resting] and cubby holes [covered cat baskets ]where one cat feels it can escape the other.

Sometimes its necessary to separate the living area of cats in a house.

For inside cats where possible consider the installation of caged outdoor areas i.e. catmax

3) Anti anxiety drugs

Similar to antidepressant these drugs prescribed by the vet will usually stop the unwanted urination. They are often necessary to break the habit. Some cats can be weaned of the drugs after a month or so of good behaviour but others may need to stay on them.

4) Getting rid of the smell

This is not only necessary for us but also for the cat who will often go back to the same place to urinate .It is very important not to clean with any ammonia based disinfectants-i.e. pineoclean as this will only enhance the smell for the cat -i.e. to them since ammonia is in urine this just smells like more urine!

On non-carpet floors wash with 1 tbsp bicarb of soda dissolved in 1/2 bucket of warm water

For carpet wash with vinegar and water [100mls white vinegar in 200 mls water]and then sprinkle with bicarb, allow to dry then vacuum .you may have to repeat this several times

For old stains cover the spot with a large amount of bicarb then wipe with a sponge dipped in vinegar and scrub with a nylon brush.Dry thoroughly [you can use a hairdryer] then vacuum.

If you can’t find the smell you can hire an ultra violet light [or tanning light] from some chemists. Under the light the stains will glow [Don’t look at the light as it may damage your eyes]. Mark the stains with chalk and remove as above.

To stop cats coming back to this spot, as well a good cleaning, put some mothballs near the spot or if your carpet is not coloured mix some camphor with a little water and dab.