Inappropriate urinating is a common complaint from cat parents. Ten percent of cats will urinate outside of their litter box. If a cat’s litter box is not up to their standards that may also cause the cat to travel outside of the litter box. About thirty percent of these cats don’t have litter box problems. Being that urination is a form of communication for cats, if a cat does urinate in an outside place it is just a miscommunication action.
Why Do Cats Use Urine to Mark Their TerritoryPack animals use their scents to communicate with other members. This helps them survive for the simple fact that they must rely on each other. Other members may also bring harm to one another if they do not communicate. Cats have similar communication methods as even dogs who are also pack animals. To keep track of which member is in which category of rank their gestures have to be easily read by one another to prevent conflict. The difference between dogs and cats is that cats do not hunt with a big group setting as does the dog.Cats are normally lone hunters to create boundaries in claiming territory for certain lengths of time. They stay away from other cats simply because they have not created a strict way of communicating to each other as well as dogs. In a case where an injury may occur a cat will normally back away from situations as a survival mechanism. When they have to deal with each other they do so in a neighbouring conflicting matter although they will never look up to one another. Leaving tips on their complaints of one another is a lot safer than being direct with one another. If a fight were to break out it could end in a serious injuries. Tips that are left by cats for other cats are urinating which give information on certain property, mating moods, and return times. Domesticated indoor cats do not have the need to hunt or mate but will still have habitual instincts to live by. They are not capable of creating their own communication gestures and only go by instinct. Cats do not adjust well to change and will be easier to keep calm if they have a routine life. If a domesticated cat is spayed or neutered, it will more than likely not spray to mark things. If a cat is under distress or is looking for a mate it will probably mark under those circumstances. Marking is a way for a cat to keep unwanted visitors away and makes their environment feel more like home for them.
Differences for Litter Box Problems or Communication Problems
A cat owner must be attentive to their cat’s habits in order to discover whether or not their cat is marking or if the cat has a communication problem. Cats do use their litter box for elimination so if there is urine present in the box that is not a reason to believe the cat has not marked outside of the box.
Signs of marking with urine are as follows;
Urine on vertical surfaces
Cats back up into a vertical object with their tail erect
Sometimes the cat’s tail and/or body will twitch
Elimination puddles are normally bigger in quantity than marking sprays. Since the marking spray contains more than urine the smell is really overwhelming. All cats like spayed or neutered have the ability to spray like an intact male. Reproductive abilities are advertised in markings. Intact males send out a message in there marking that they are available for mating. If there are more than one cats in a household it is more probable for a cat to mark with their urine. Cats do not adapt well to change. Change will cause a cat to feel stressed. If a cat does feel stress due to change they are likely to spray with their urine.
Urine marking may also be a cat’s comeback for outside situations just as it is for the stress of change in their environment. Conflicts between cats are usually the reason behind the urine marking. These conflicts are normally anxiety based as opposed to anger. A cat will normally mark out of a reaction of confusion not necessarily anger. Cats do not really know how to deal with conflict. If a cat is unable to avoid conflict with another cat the stress will cause the cat to mark with urine more frequently.
Urine Marking Remedies for Intact Male Cats
Although it is not a guaranteed remedy spaying or neutering your cat may reduce marking habits. This remedy helps keep cats from marking for reproductive purposes.
To avoid conflict with the outside world a great remedy is to keep a cat isolated and blocked out from the outside by closing doors, blinds, and windows.
Before trying any other marking remedies it is very important that a cat owner is certain there are no health problems with the cat. Illnesses may cause more stress and more reason for marking.
After receiving a clean professional bill of health the following guidelines may be met;
Determine which individual cat is doing the marking
Ask a vet to prescribe a humane dye that will allow you to single out the marker.
If there are not enough litter boxes available to indoor cats it may cause conflict over territory instincts with the litter box which causes more marking. To determine how many boxes your household may need be sure to have one for each cat and then one extra also. To keep conflict low be sure to keep litterboxes private but with at least 2 exits to be sure a cat can get away from the other.
Litter Box Maintenance
Be sure to scoop your litter boxes at least once a day. Completely empty and replace the litter once a week. When doing so be sure to clean the box with harmless cleaners as to cut down on conflicting odours between cats.
Conflict may also be reduced by providing plentiful perching areas for each cat.
To stay sensitive to each cats needs be sure to have different activity areas readily available for each individual cat. Such as scratching posts, eating areas, as well as play.