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Help! My cat is spraying all over the house

islandgirl1985

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Jan 17, 2015
3
1
I need help. I've never posted to a forum but I don't know why to do. My 3 year old male tabby is spraying all over things. He does it in front of us and when we are not around. I will not get rid of him he is like my child. We do have another boy cat (his brother) who does not spray and uses his litter. Anyone know of any recommended sprays to help with this?
 

stephenq

TCS Member
Veteran
Jun 19, 2003
5,670
939
East Coast, USA
I need help. I've never posted to a forum but I don't know why to do. My 3 year old male tabby is spraying all over things. He does it in front of us and when we are not around. I will not get rid of him he is like my child. We do have another boy cat (his brother) who does not spray and uses his litter. Anyone know of any recommended sprays to help with this?
Hi and welcome to TCS.

First, please tell us if he is neutered? Also same question for the other cat.

When did he start spraying? 

Does he stand on his hind legs when he does this?
 

the3rdname

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
May 8, 2014
399
79
Pennsylvania
I've learned the hard way that it's imperative to remove *all* traces of urine.  A good enzyme cleaner (I like Nature's Miracle) and a UV light are necessary for winning this battle.  Using the UV light is a little scary because most biological material fluoresces (among a host of other things), so don't be surprised if your house lights up like a nightmarish 4th of July.  Urine stains will look like splotches, and if on the wall it will be pretty obvious that it was sprayed.  When laundering items that have been peed on, saturate the stain with enzyme cleaner and let it sit overnight.  Then add 1 cup of borax to the wash along with your usual detergent plus white vinegar, or "cleaning vinegar", in your fabric softener compartment.  Do not add vinegar directly to the wash: it will neutralize the borax.  

The next thing you should do is place a litter box in the same area the cat has been spraying.  You may need to use multiple boxes in the same room for the time being; the idea is to substitute an acceptable place to mark for the unacceptable one.  

If this behavior started recently, there has to be either a medical or psychological reason for the problem.  Do the cats get along?  Were they introduced recently?  Have stray cats been hanging around the house?  

Hope you get some more suggestions soon!  Good luck!
 

paddycat

TCS Member
Kitten
Jan 17, 2015
16
8
Could be a bladder infection my cat gets bladder problems alot. I would see your vet just incase but i use cystease every other day as per the vets instructions to keep it from recurring.

but it can be something as simple as the cats food is too high in salt for their system to process it without irritating the bladder and/or kidneys

good luck
 

arthursmommy

TCS Member
Young Cat
Jan 17, 2015
36
6
Is he declared? Sometimes that can cause this behavior. It may also be stress. I had a cat with this issue who was so difficult to train. He defied pretty much every attempt. I read up on it, and apparently sometimes prozac will work. (A kitty-dosed prescription from your vet, obviously. ) Have there been any changes in the household before he started spraying?
 
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islandgirl1985

TCS Member
Thread starter
Kitten
Jan 17, 2015
3
1
Thank you all for the help.
Yes, he is neutered, has been since they were 2 month old. His brother is Nova and we got them together 3 years ago. They have been born and raised together and get along great. They snuggle and sleep with each other frequently. We do live in a cat only neighborhood, so there are cats pretty much at every house. This problem just started about 6 months ago with the repeatedly spraying indoors. Nothing has changed scheduling wise in our household. We let them out when we wake up and they are called inside and kept inside for the rest of the night. This is a schedule that we stick to every day. The cats are used to it. They come running inside when they hear their names. He is a fun loving energetic cat so that's why I'm so distraught about this problem continuing. I'm going to try and use another litter box in the living for now, I have read that option before. Also I will place a call to our vet.
 

the3rdname

TCS Member
Alpha Cat
May 8, 2014
399
79
Pennsylvania
Thank you all for the help.
Yes, he is neutered, has been since they were 2 month old. His brother is Nova and we got them together 3 years ago. They have been born and raised together and get along great. They snuggle and sleep with each other frequently. We do live in a cat only neighborhood, so there are cats pretty much at every house. This problem just started about 6 months ago with the repeatedly spraying indoors. Nothing has changed scheduling wise in our household. We let them out when we wake up and they are called inside and kept inside for the rest of the night. This is a schedule that we stick to every day. The cats are used to it. They come running inside when they hear their names. He is a fun loving energetic cat so that's why I'm so distraught about this problem continuing. I'm going to try and use another litter box in the living for now, I have read that option before. Also I will place a call to our vet.
Wow, a cat only neighborhood?  I'm envious!  Dogs are awesome, don't get me wrong.  If only good dog owners weren't such a rarity, kwim?  (And I'm sure you do since you chose to live in a dog-free zone.)  

I don't know if your kitty is in the habit of marking territory outside and, for whatever reason, doesn't distinguish between outside/inside, if it's a medical issue, or what.  Some boy cats are natural-born urine markers.  It's why I can't have a single unlidded litter box in my house (one in particular pretty much only sprays when he goes).  I'm not sure how you would teach a kitty who has carte blanche outside that the rules change the second he walks through the door.  I know they'll continue to mark any areas where pheromones linger and the only way to thoroughly rid your house of all traces is with an enzyme cleaner, or some people like the CO2 cleaners.

The only anti-marking spray I'm familiar with is Comfort Zone, but if he's urinating indiscriminately I can't imagine you'll be able to spray everything.   It isn't cheap stuff, either.  I've no idea if a diffuser would have the same effect.

It will be interesting to see what the vet says.  
 

hexiesfriend

TCS Member
Top Cat
Dec 29, 2013
1,469
212
Orlando, Florida
There could be a new stray cat hanging around outside that's marking your yard or he sees one at night from inside. Can you tell when you let them out whether another cat has been in your yard?
 

iluvcats3

TCS Member
Young Cat
Aug 22, 2012
91
16
I use odormute instead of nature's miracle because it comes in an unscented version and also because it's MUCH cheaper. The disadvantage is you have to mix it up.  It works great, but the urine smell does not go away until the odormute is totally dry. It's $15 a box on amazon, but it makes many gallons of urine neutralizer (these enzymes break the urine down into another chemical). I have a female kitty who has been a problem on and off all her life, but what has helped with her is 1) use the odormute 2) she has favored surfaces, like baskets of fresh or dirty clothes, damp rugs. So I put the bath mat over the edge of the bathtub when done, do not let her have access to dirty or clean laundry etc. When she has more recently (in old age) developed inflammatory bowel disease, when she is uncomfortable with these tummy issues, she has peed on furniture. I finally gave up and got a scat mat for the couch, and we put stuff all over the recliners when we humans go to bed.  But when her tummy issues are under good control, she behaves well. So then that makes me agree with others, maybe an infection or some other medical problem bothering your kitty, or could be outdoor kitties hassling your kitty. More litterboxes in convenient locations for the kitty has always been a plus for me in all my years with cats who sometimes have problems. My other old cat years ago had problems, off and on,  but it started with UTI's and in those days, I did not know about enzyme cleaners.
 

shovetheholly

TCS Member
Kitten
Jan 13, 2015
19
9
OK, here's my story about this - but please don't think that anything horrible is going to happen to your cat.  The moral of the story is that this is stress-behaviour, not a sign of impending doom!  

My cat did this for years in my old house, which was in a godawful rural village near Barnsley that was honestly like Royston Vasey, the setting for The League of Gentlemen.  He had lived there for a number of years, but I took him on when neighbours moved out and left him.  I tried absolutely every suggestion going to stop the behaviour, but nothing really worked.  There was an improvement when there were more litter boxes around the house but nothing really sorted the problem.  (And yes, I did cover floors with foil, and yes I did use feliway, and yes I did try a discouraging water jet, and yes I did clean up every trace using a UV light and every type of cleaner known to man - including washing powder, every kind of disinfectant, proprietary enzyme cleaners - nothing worked).

At this time, I had very anti-social neighbours, really, really the worst kind of people you can imagine, like Mr and Mrs Twit.  The type that throw litter all over their garden, and yours.  The type that come around and are aggressive and abusive because your cat commits the terrible crime of walking in their garden.  Apparently their 7 year old was scared of the glowing eyes, thinking it was 'the bogeyman'.  The idea of actually educating their children not to believe in stupid superstitions never occurred to them. One time, they came around and I got them on tape.  They threatened to shoot both me and my cat with an air rifle they had in their house, because I wouldn't clean up a load of wee in a tent they had up in their garden.  They said this came from my cat, but I know for a fact that cats dislike peeing on plastic, and I had seen their two dogs repeatedly pooing and weeing in there.   

Then, the unimaginable happened.  I came home from work and my cat had vanished.  He was nowhere to be found.  I searched high and low.  I knocked on every door in the neighbourhood.  I got a few odd looks.  In a panic, I started ringing round the vets.  Nothing.

Then I got a call, the next day, saying he had been found.  He had been shot, bundled into a compost bag, and dumped over a wall in a very rural field.  The intention was that he wouldn't be found.  However, I think someone must have seen the dumping and gone to investigate, because they found him and took him to the local vet.  The person who did it said that they just happened to need a wee at that very place, and jumped over the wall and investigated the bag.  I am suspicious of this story.  I am very grateful to the person who did it, but I think they knew a lot more than they were letting on.

Miraculously, my cat had survived.  He was really, really poorly, but he pulled through.  I got in touch with the police but they were useless and didn't take this seriously, in spite of the recording I had threatening to shoot him.  

I had had enough by this point and moved house, and the spraying instantly stopped.  It was clearly a reaction not to anything inside the house, but to the outside stresses.  I think the neighbours were probably picking on him constantly, and this made him feel fearful and defensive so he would spray to feel safer.  So my recommendation would be: look outside the house, as well as inside, and see if you can work out why this is happening.  It may be that you have an overly aggressive cat in the neighbourhood, or a dog, or horrible people.  There are things you can do to minimize the effects of this, like planting shrubs in the right place, chasing other cats off etc.  
 
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