How to Keep Cats From Peeing in Laundry Baskets

Has Kitty found an alternative litter box in your laundry room?

Has Kitty found an alternative litter box in your laundry room?

Cats are clean animals -- if they're peeing anywhere but their litter boxes, they might be trying to tell you something. While you might feel like screaming, don't punish Kitty, especially if you discover it well after the fact. Instead, figure out what triggered the peeing and put an end to it.

Hide the laundry baskets for a couple of days and see what happens. Your first goal is to figure out if the cats are attracted to the baskets themselves or if they're peeing there as a protest for something else going on, such as a problem with their litter box or the person wearing the clothes held inside the basket. If hiding the baskets solves the problem and the kitties are back to using the litter box, you have your answer. If they move on to peeing in a different object or corner, then you need to look for solutions somewhere else.

Clean the litter box well. A common reason cats pee anywhere besides their litter boxes is that they have a problem with the boxes themselves. Do you have more than one cat but only one little box? One cat might have taken ownership of the litter box and displaced the other one. Buy one litter box for each cat you have. Try cleaning the litter more frequently and buy a new type of litter.

Compare the litter box size and format with the size and format of the laundry basket. Does the basket have high sides? Kitty might prefer a more enclosed environment for bathroom time, where he can feel protected. Purchase a closed litter box, the kind that looks like a little house with an opening or a flap door.

Wash the baskets with vinegar. If cats can smell urine, they will pee again and again on the same area -- in this case, right in your laundry baskets. Using just soap and water is unlikely to get rid of the smell completely, so try vinegar. If the smell persists, just replace the baskets -- it might be the only way to destroy the magnetic attraction Kitty has to them.

Warning

  • Cats who suddenly start peeing in unusual places might need a visit to the vet. Sometimes a urinary track infection or other health problems are to blame.
 

About the Author

Aside from writing experience, I also have coaching/teaching experience, both as an writing coach (currently teaching three workshops at www.coffeehouseforwriters.com) and an ESL (English-as-a-Second-Language)teacher abroad. I'm a certified Nutrition Consultant and fitness trainer and a longtime contributor to health/wellness publications, from Self to Marie Claire. I am fluent in Spanish and have worked as a translator and a language instructor. I also have two books forthcoming in 2008.

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