Among the most unpleasant behaviour issues to deal with in cats is spraying. The good thing is that using a dedicated guardian and vet working with each other, spraying can be overcome. It simply requires some detective work and a little behavioral modification.
What’s cat spraying?
Spraying, also called urine marking, is when a cat deposit pee on 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 can also notice an erect tail with some occasional twitching of the tail or the whole body. You will also probably notice that the odor of the urine at the spray is far more pungent than pee deposited into the litterbox. The smell is due to additional items in the pee that ease communication, such as pheromones.
One common cause of spraying is that something is wrong. For this reason, your first step must always be a visit to the vet. If you and your vet have ruled out a medical reason for spraying, then it is time to investigate behavioral causes:
Within feline social classes, urine marking is used as a kind of communication. By spraying at a specific area, a cat can allow other cats know she has been there. Marking in an area also lets other cats know to stay off and establishes a cat’s land.
Anyone who has cats knows they can be very sensitive to changes in the surroundings. If you’ve moved to some other location, done major renovations, brought home a new relative, or lost you might discover that your cat starting to spray. One recent review in Applied Animal Behaviour Science looked at just how chemical cues and scent can assist a cat to feel more comfortable in her surroundings and reduce stress.
Cats can leave”messages” about potential mating encounters by spraying. This is the reason why so many cats who spray are unneutered males, although spraying can be located among fixed males and spayed and whole guys too.
If you reside in a home with more than 1 cat, spraying can happen if there is conflict between the cats. Even multiple cats who get along well may mark within the household, simply due to the presence of different cats.
We can also see urine marking in houses with no more than 1 cat, where you will find cats roaming freely outside and the house cat knows of the presence of the other cats.
As stated before, your absolute first step would be a trip to your vet to rule out medical reasons for the behaviour. Any steps you take to correct this behaviour won’t work if your cat is sick. If it is behavioral, measure one is identifying the cause. These are the questions I’d ask myself:
1. Which cat is indicating? In case you have multiple cats, first, figure out which cat is doing the marking. One technique is to limit the cats and let one out to roam at one time. If this does not work, you can contact your vet to see if you can get a prescription for fluorescein. This non-toxic dye can be put in your cat’s food and will look blue under a UV flashlight. The dye can be washed off your wall too.
2. Does my cat neutered or spayed? Otherwise, doing this can help, particularly if other cats are all around.
3. Is my cat being taunted from the neighbors? If neighborhood cats are the problem, keep window shades closed, as well as doors. You are able to block displays, and accessibility to some perches or areas to unwind and look out the windows. You don’t need to do this for each and every window, but concentrate on the ones where your cat is seeing different cats.
4. How do I give my own cats more space? If you do have multiple indoor cats, raise the amount of litter box options.
Give cats more areas to sit up high (cat trees, shelves( and window perches). Put multiple food and water bowls around the home, along with toys. The more there is of everything, the more probable it is that conflict will decrease.
Cleaning can reduce cat spraying
Irrespective of the problem causing the marking, you want to make certain that you clean any feline spraying in your home properly. It is not enough to simply use soap and water to eliminate the smell. It might not smell for youpersonally, but if not cleaned correctly, your cat can definitely sense it. Use special enzymatic cleaners that are created especially to break down pet pee. Do not use any kind of cleanser using an ammonia as this odor can stimulate more spraying because there is ammonia in urine.
How do your vet help you reduce cat spraying?
If you are still struggle cat spraying no more, discuss it with your vet. Some cats might be set on medication for anxiety to help alleviate the spraying.