When cats spill urine all over the house, there can be a variety of reasons. In order to solve the problem, intensive work with the cats often bears fruit.
There are differences between true marking behavior and litter box aversion. An aversion to the toilet arises when something is wrong with it from the cat’s point of view. Even small adjustments can help (see box). If you follow these tips, you will soon have a cat that likes to use its toilet. If the animal continues to make mistakes, it is probably just marking if causes such as kidney and other infectious diseases have been ruled out.
With real marking, the situation is much more complex. Urine marking is very important for reducing stress. Anxious, restless, or insecure animals are more likely to mark. Typical places are windows, doors, frames, curtains, sockets, kitchen appliances, keyboards and laptops, new objects in the home, or worn clothing. But people are also marked directly with urine.
Brain Training Can Help
Three measures that reduce the animal’s stress can help to solve the problem. A game of fishing, throwing stuffed mice, or pulling a string across the floor – daily play at fixed times also gives lazy cats more exercise. You should always cater to their preferences because this provides additional motivation. Playing in the evening has a particularly positive effect. But even during the day, when the cat is alone at home, it should have toys available. You can also use mechanical things like a panic mouse. A water bowl filled with table tennis balls also encourages lots of velvet paws to move.
Little food games help to get the brain going: hiding a treat behind the sofa is enough. If the kitty has gotten her search order, hiding can be made more difficult. This is real brain training for the cat.
The supreme discipline is to combine physical and mental exertion, for example with the following trick: speak to the cat in a soft voice and often say its name. This is how you get their attention. Then place two armchairs next to each other and connect them with a narrow board. Sit in one chair, the cat in the other. Lure the animal to you with toys and the command “Hop” so that it has to balance across the board. This trains balance and dexterity. Next step: Remove the board between the chairs and lure the cat back to you. Jumping from chair to chair trains coordination and a sense of proportion. Repeat the lessons several times.
It is often helpful for marking cats to increase their living space. Additional rooms that the cat is allowed into or access to the balcony can have positive effects. In addition, there should be plenty of scratching and climbing opportunities. Also useful: a place to retreat or sleep in each room (cat den, boxes, blanket over a chair); elevated seating and observation areas, for example on window sills; a cat fountain.
A Pheromone Spray
These things structure the living environment. In addition, cats love routine more than anything. If there is something to eat at seven o’clock in the morning and then there are five minutes of play, the cat combines the two. Even more: It links these pleasant things with the lighting conditions and thus remembers the time of day. The internal clock is not unique to cats, but no other pet needs the fixed processes so much. Rituals can be easily integrated into everyday life. Listening to music or reading the newspaper at a certain time can easily be combined with petting the cat. Even if it sounds humanized, the house tiger can look forward to an event with its human every day, so to speak.
Pheromones also influence cat behavior. One of these fragrances is called F3 and is released when the head is rubbed. It reduces stress and anxiety in other cats. Such pheromones have long been commercially available as sprays. The artificial F3 can be a solution to unwanted marking. Before it is used, you should clean the peed areas thoroughly – preferably with a neutral cleaner without perfume. Then spray the areas with 70% alcohol. Then the marking points (absolutely in the absence of the cat) are sprayed twice a day with the F3 pheromone.
The spray spots should be allowed to dry for about 30 minutes before the cat is allowed back into the room, otherwise, the cat maybe even more likely to start marking. If you consistently challenge the cat mentally and physically every day for four weeks, perfect its living environment and use a pheromone spray, tagging should be a thing of the past.