One of the most unpleasant behavior issues to deal with in cats is spraying. According to the Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science, spraying is sadly a very common reason for cats being turned in to shelters. The fantastic thing is that using a dedicated guardian and veterinarian working together, spraying may be overcome. It just takes some detective work and a modest behavioral modification.
What is cat spraying?
Spraying, also known as urine marking, is when a cat deposits urine onto a wall, door or other upright (vertical) object. A cat won’t squat to spray, as would occur with normal urination; rather, a cat that’s spraying will probably be standing right up. Should you see your cat in the act, you may also observe an erect tail with a few occasional twitching of either the tail or the whole body. You will also probably observe that the odor of the urine in the spray is much more pungent than urine deposited in the litterbox. The odor is a result of additional items in the urine that ease communication, like pheromones. Spraying is different from litterbox aversion, and there are a variety of reasons that your cat might be spraying.
One common cause of spraying is that something isn’t right. Because of this, your first step should always be a trip to the veterinarian. If you and your vet’ve ruled out a medical reason for spraying, then it is time to investigate behavioral causes:
Within feline social classes, urine marking is employed as a kind of communication. By spraying in a specific place, a cat may let other cats know she’s been there. Marking in an area also lets other cats know to keep off and builds a cat’s territory.
Anybody who has cats understands they can be quite sensitive to changes in the surroundings. If you’ve moved to a new location, done major renovations, brought home a new relative, or lost one, you could discover your cat beginning to spray. One recent review in Applied Animal Behaviour Science looked at how compound cues and odor can help a cat to feel more comfortable in her surroundings and decrease stress.
Cats may render”messages” about potential breeding experiences by spraying. That is why so many cats who spray are unneutered males, although spraying may be located among fixed men and spayed and whole guys too.
If you live in a house with more than one cat, spraying may happen if there is conflict between cats. Even multiple cats who get too may mark inside the household, just due to the existence of different cats.
We can also see urine marking in homes with no more than one cat, where you will find cats roaming freely outside and the house cat is aware of the existence of the other cats.
As mentioned earlier, your first step is a visit to your veterinarian to rule out medical reasons for the behavior. Any steps you take to correct this behavior will not function if your cat is sick. If it’s behavioral, then measure one is identifying the cause. These are the questions I would ask myself:
1. Which cat is marking? One method is to confine the cats and allow one out to roam at one time. If this does not work, you can contact your veterinarian to see if you can find a prescription for fluorescein. The dye can be washed off your walls as well.
2. Otherwise, doing so can help, particularly if other cats are around.
3. If neighborhood cats are the problem, maintain window shades closed, as well as doors. You are able to block screens, and access to any perches or places to relax and look out the windows. You don’t have to do this for each and every window, but concentrate on the ones where your cat is seeing different cats.
4. How can I give my own cats more space? If you do have multiple indoor cats, raise the quantity of litter box choices. A rule of thumb to follow is one box per cat plus one. Make sure boxes are not crammed into corners where a cat might feel”trapped” if another cat comes by.
Put multiple water and food bowls around the house, along with toys. The more there is of that which, the more probable it is that conflict will decrease.
Cleaning may reduce cat spraying
Regardless of the problem causing the marking, you want to be certain that you clean any feline spraying in your house properly. It’s not enough to just use water and soap to eliminate the odor. It might not smell for you, but if not cleaned correctly, your cat may definitely sense it. Use special enzymatic cleaners which are made specifically to break down pet urine. Do not use any type of cleaner using an ammonia base, as this odor can stimulate more spraying because there is ammonia in urine.
How can your veterinarian help you decrease cat spraying?
If you are still struggle how to stop a cat from peeing, share it with your veterinarian. Some cats might be placed on medication for stress to help alleviate the spraying.