Our favorite feline friends are wonderful in most ways, but they do occasionally decide to indulge in out-side-the-box thinking when it comes to urination.
Here are some tips we’ve found to deal with the odor and mess.
Remove as much as you can
The less urine there is, the less you’ll have to deep clean. So when you notice that your cat has decided to make a random space into their litter box, clean up as much of it as you can as soon as you can.
As soon as you come upon the mess, grab a paper towel, and try to blot up as much of the urine as possible. If it’s a large spot and you don’t want to waste paper towels, use a cloth towel or old clothes that can be thrown away.
If the spot is on the carpet, stand on the wet spot to force the moisture up (but do remember to wear shoes).
Rubbing a stain will only drive the urine deeper into the carpet. If it’s dry, pour cold water on the stain, and blot.
If you haven’t noticed – and we don’t know how you could have avoided it, if your cats are randomly peeing – there’s a heavy ammonia smell associated with it.
When you’re cleaning it up, don’t use detergents with ammonia in them. The “pee smell” in them might encourage your cat to mark the spot again.
Use an enzymatic cleaner
These have been our secret weapon lately in battling cat pee. A spray made with enzymes that target pet urine can help break down the urine and make it less likely that your cat will return.
There are a number of these products in pet stores and home improvement stores. Just be sure to use it as instructed.
Try homemade solutions
In addition to the enzymatic cleaner, there are lots of homemade solutions as well.
Here’s one: a water and vinegar solution. Vinegar is great for killing bacteria.
Try 1½ cups of warm water and a ½ cup of vinegar. Pour this concoction over the stain and soak for about 3 to 5 minutes.
Baking soda helps
After the water and vinegar solution is dry, cover the area with baking soda. In a few hours, you’ll see the moisture drawn out of the carpet by the baking soda.
Then apply a hydrogen peroxide mix
Once you’ve applied the baking soda, mix ¾ cup of three percent hydrogen peroxide (you know you have some under your bathroom sink) with 1 teaspoon of dish detergent. Test a small spot, because sometimes peroxides can discolor fabrics. Once it’s clear, sprinkle this solution over the baking soda. Work the baking soda into the fabric or carpet.
Use an extracting wet vac
Whatever solution you chose to use, once the area is dry, use an extracting wet vac to clean that section of the carpet. These cleaners blow clean water onto the area, then suck out the dirty water. It rinses out the mixture you’ve put on the carpet and the remaining urine.
Follow up with air freshener
Baking soda can come back into the picture now as an air freshener, or you can create your own, using 1 cup crushed, dried herbs (rosemary, southernwood, lavender, etc.), 1 teaspoon ground cloves, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1 teaspoon baking soda. Sprinkle, let sit for 20 minutes, then dry vacuum.
Prevent future accidents
Some preventative maintenance might be in order. If it keeps happening, try cleaning out the litter box completely to remove the smell. Remember to not overfill the box with litter as well.
Puppy training pads can be useful in areas the cat continues to mark.
Take the time to do the detective work
Cats aren’t trying to get back at you by peeing randomly – they’re trying to tell you something. It could be a medical issue such as a urinary tract infection that has created a bad association with urination for the cat, or it could be arthritis that doesn’t allow them to get in the litter box comfortably.
Make sure your vet sees your cat if regular outside-the-box peeing occurs – it could be a symptom of something more serious.