Has your purrfect pal started to spray and urine mark around your home? While cats of all types, males and female (neutered and unneutered) can spray, neutering and spaying tends to greatly reduce this practice.
So, if your neutered or spayed kitty has started to spray and mark around the house (remembering that unneutered cats will naturally want to spray when looking for a mate!), it is worth considering why.
It’s important to think about the cause, see How to stop your cat spraying for more on this. Spraying is commonly used as a territory marker or as a signal to potential mates; however spraying may also be due to stress, illness, or if your kitty is unhappy with their environment.
Following the tips below will help you eliminate the causes of spraying and ensure your kitty is happy and relaxed!
6 TIPS TO STOP A NEUTERED CAT FROM SPRAYING
1. Check you’ve provided enough resources
Does your kitty have everything they need - particularly if there are lots of cats in your household?
If there aren’t enough resources to go around, your cat may be spraying to mark their territory! Make sure every kitty in your house has their own food and drink bowl, litter tray, bedding and toys. You should always provide lots of hiding places that your pets can escape to - cat trees are a good way to ensure there are enough high and low spaces for your pets!
2. Look at your litter trays
Our cats are very clean creatures and like to use a tidy, fresh and easily accessible litter tray to do their business. So if their toilet space isn’t cleaned regularly enough, is difficult to access or is shared with another cat, you might find that they start to spray or urinate elsewhere!
3. Consider other cats and conflict
Is there any kitty conflict happening in your house? If your pet feels stressed by other cats they may be urine marking out of anxiety, or to show their territory. Outside cats, who may be visiting your garden or walking by, can cause a lot of stress for indoor cats. If this is a factor, you can try to stop other cats from visiting, or close curtains and blinds to stop your kitty from seeing them.
4. Clean all existing spray marks
If you have any existing spray marks in your home, make sure you clean these as soon as possible! Otherwise, the scent of the marks will be a strong reminder to your kitty to come back and spray again! Make sure you use an enzyme-based cleaner (never one that contains ammonia) to clean any spray sites and keep your home feeling fresh.
5. Check with the vet
If spraying is an unusual behaviour for your cat, or continues even after you’ve addressed other causes, make sure you take your kitty to the vet. Some health problems can cause your pet to urinate or mark outside of their litter box, so be sure to get them checked for any underlying problems.
6. Create a reassuring environment
Does your cat have a calm, positive environment they can escape to? Our kitties like the reassurance of a controlled, structured environment with a clear routine - without it, they may spray out of stress or anxiety. To create a reassuring space, make sure you feed your cat at a similar time each day, provide regular play sessions, and give them lots of regular fuss!
You should also try to limit any stress factors where possible. New people, new pets or even changes in your home such as decorating may all cause kitty stress.
Using a Feliway Optimum Diffuser in the areas where your cat spends the most time, can also reinforce a calming home environment for your kitty and help to correct behaviours such as urinary marking by creating a calm comfortable atmosphere. Applying FELIWAY CLASSIC Spray to places where your cat has sprayed will also help to reduce stress, and stop your cat from returning to sprayed areas.
Together, you and your cat can create a calm, happy environment!