Urine Marking In Cats

Urine Marking in Cats.

By urine marking, a cat tells other cats of its presence and makes a statement of ownership.


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Urine Marking in Cats - Spraying and Inappropriate Urination


The above image has been reproduced from an article Cat Spraying: Feline Marking  Behavior published on the website www.cathealth.com. A portion of that article has also been reproduced below:

Cat Spraying: Feline Marking Behavior

Cat marking is different than inappropriate urination.

One of the biggest concerns that people have with cats is urination outside of the litter box. This problem afflicts about 10% of indoor cats at some point in their lifetime. There are many possible reasons for this frustrating behavior. When dealing with urine outside of the box, it's important to first determine whether you are dealing with inappropriate urination or urine marking. Though some causes and treatments for the two conditions overlap, it does help to know which your cat is exhibiting to formulate the best plan.

If your cat is urinating or spraying outside of the litter box, visit your veterinarian first to rule out a medical condition.

Inappropriate Urination versus Urine Marking in Cats

Some of the ways you can start to determine whether your cat is marking territory or has a problem with the litter box are:

READ MORE .... the full article "Cat Spraying: Feline Marking  Behavior"

What is urine marking?

Urine marking ' sometimes called spraying ' is when your cat deposits small amounts of urine (usually on vertical surfaces) as a kind of message tag to announce his presence.  Although this issue involves inappropriate urination inside the house, marking isn't actually a housetraining problem: it's a deliberate expression of territoriality, which is a completely different thing.

Why do cats mark?

There are a number of reasons why cats mark:

  • Territoriality: the cat is letting other cats know that the marked area is 'his' territory.
  • To communicate sexual availability.
  • Out of stress or anxiety.
  • A change of location: some cats will begin to mark when their owners move house.
  • If a new animal or human is introduced to the house.
  • Because of overcrowding (too many other cats in the house).
  • The cat is receiving less attention than normal.
  • A significant change in lifestyle or routine (for example, the owner gets a full-time job; someone moves out of home; the house is renovated).

Which cats are more likely to mark?

All cats mark - and unfortunately, there's no way of predicting in advance which cats are going to become sprayers!  However, some cats are more likely to mark than others. From most likely to least likely, these are:

  • Unneutered (intact) male cats.
  • Neutered male cats.
  • Intact females.
  • Spayed females.

If you have an intact male cat, urine marking is practically to be expected. The urine of a tomcat has that characteristically strong, catty odour, and is very recognizable (and offensive) to humans: neutering your male cat will remove this odour and will also reduce the likelihood of recurrent marking.

Although neutering is strongly recommended in the treatment of feline marking, it's not necessarily guaranteed to work: approximately 10% of neutered males and 5% of neutered females keep right on doing it.

How can I get my cat to stop marking?

Although there's no hard-and-fast, guaranteed 'cure' for this undesirable behaviour, there are a number of steps that you can take which are likely to either significantly reduce, or stop entirely, your cat's marking.

Listed below are some of the most effective options:

  • Take him for a check-up.

There are a huge number of reasons why your cat is choosing to urinate outside the litter box: he may be marking, or there may be a medical cause for the behaviour. Before you can decide on appropriate treatment, you need to rule out health-related causes for the inappropriate elimination.

Take him to the vet for a urinalysis (a complete analysis of his urine) and an overall check-up, to make sure that there are no medical reasons for his behaviour.

  • Neuter your cat

Neuter your cat immediately. This is the single most effective thing you can do to stop your cat's spraying, and if you hope to get any control at all over the issue, it's pretty much mandatory.

Statistics show that a whopping 87% of all cats stop marking when they're altered - of this number, 78% cease marking immediately, and 9% stop within three months.

  • Behavioural modification

Behaviour modification is a tried and true method of controlling your cat's spraying, although it will require a considerable investment of time and effort on your behalf. You'll need to supervise your cat closely, paying attention to where and when he marks. The use of behavioural-modification tools like water pistols and shake cans (a tin can with ten pennies or a handful of pebbles inside ' when shaken, it makes a loud, scary noise) speeds the process up considerably: when you catch him marking, startle him out of continuing by either spraying him with the water pistol or shaking the can vigorously.

'Redesignating' the areas which he tends to mark in can also help: cats don't like to spray in areas where they eat, sleep, and play.

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Back to the world of cats.

How to get rid of cat odors in the home?. Any householder who has cats as pets should do a Google search for these various terms : "urine marking in cats", "neutered cat spraying", "how to stop a neutered cat from spraying", "neutered male cat spraying in house", "signs of cat spraying", "how to clean cat spray", "cat scent marking", "do cats mark their territory with poop", "why is my female cat spraying all of a sudden", and a study of the first few, or most relevant reading entries of on search result page should equip him or her with the knowledge and know how on keeping the house cat odor free.


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