How to Keep a Cat From Urinating on Drapes

by Naomi Millburn, Demand Media
    Cat urine and your living room drapes are not the finest combination.

    Cat urine and your living room drapes are not the finest combination.

    No matter how much you may adore your cat, pungent, damp patches on the living room drapes are not a fun way to be welcomed home -- ugh. By implementing a few easy solutions, however, you may be able to change your cat's yucky urine spraying ways.

    Items you will need

    • Synthetic pheromone spray
    • Cat toys

    Step 1

    Schedule an appointment for neutering or spaying surgery. Urine spraying is a key "mating signal" in male and female cats. When it comes to alerting the opposite sex of mating availability, cats tend to do so on vertical objects and surfaces, such as drapes, doors, windows, furniture and plain old walls. If you want to cut out your cat's hormonal urges, fixing him is the way to go, although the pesky spraying habits may take a couple of weeks to subside fully.

    Step 2

    Minimize stress. Even after a cat has been fixed, he may respond to stressful situations and circumstances in life by avoiding his litter box and spraying your lovely white silk drapes, instead. Cats aren't always as cool and calm as their reputations may make them seem. They can sense tension and change, and those things often makes them anxious. Help your stressed out cat blow off steam by giving him ample attention, no matter how busy you are. Play "fetch" using his catnip mouse. Stroke his back for 15 minutes every night. Set aside a calm and quiet "sanctuary" within your home where he can go to escape chaos and unfamiliarity, especially if a lot of things happen to be going on at the moment, such as a move or the introduction of a new pet. A new pet not only is stressful for cats, but also can trigger territorial urine marking behaviors.

    Step 3

    Analyze his litter box situation. If your cat is unhappy for any reason with his current litter set-up, he'll make sure you know it. When a cat resorts to spraying and house soiling, the reason may be as simple as a litter box that just isn't ideal. It may not be as clean as he would like it to be. Maybe he feels claustrophobic in his tiny box. Perhaps he despises the busy location right in front of the front door. He may even resent having to share it with another household kitty. The texture and smell of the litter may upset him. Go over all of the things that may be causing him to ban the box and figure out what you need to change ASAP.

    Step 4

    Consult an animal behavior specialist. Ask your veterinarian to recommend a qualified animal behavior specialist in your area. The specialist may be able to give you safe and suitable solutions for stopping your cat's specific spraying habit, such as an artificial pheromone spray that curbs inappropriate urinating by emulating the soothing actions of feline facial pheromones. These types of relaxing and "happiness-inducing" sprays not only aim to eliminate or decrease spraying, but also other undesirable feline behaviors, such as scratching. Artificial pheromones may be effective especially in situations where unwanted behaviors are caused by anxiety or territorial strife.

    Step 5

    Scrub the sprayed drapes exhaustively. The more immaculate your drapes are, the less compelled your cat may be to replicate his action. He then won't have a "reminder" scent, after all.

    Tips

    • Don't rule out health ailments when it comes to inappropriate bathroom behaviors in your cat. Take your cutie to the veterinarian as soon as possible for a thorough checkup. The spraying and elimination issues could be related to anything from diabetes and urinary incontinence to hyperthyroidism and cystitis, so take action. Also, speak to the vet about the possibility of anti-anxiety medicines, if you think that your cat has a stress issue.
    • Reducing outdoor stimulus may be effective in stopping frustrating spraying habits. For example, if your cat is able to see stray and feral kitties directly outside of the window with the drapes, it may fire up his mating desires and spraying for that matter. Keep blinds closed if this is an issue, especially until you can get your pet an appointment for neutering surgery.

    Warning

    • Avoid punishing and scolding a cat for spraying. Most importantly, never, ever lay a hand on a cat, now matter how annoyed his behavior may be making you. These things are ineffective in achieving a desired behavior in your cat. Speaking harshly and sternly will only invoke fear of you in your pet, rather than get him to stop a certain action. Cats can't understand why they're in "trouble," so punishment essentially is fruitless. Always act as calm and cool as possible when dealing with tough pet situations. Be a strong role model for your fluff ball!

    About the Author

    Naomi Millburn has been a freelance writer since 2011. Her areas of writing expertise include arts and crafts, literature, linguistics, traveling, fashion and European and East Asian cultures. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in American literature from Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo.

    Photo Credits

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