The Princess and the Pee

maia1350Maia, our fairy princess in cat form, doesn’t like to pee where anyone else pees. It didn’t help that when she came to live with us at 3 months old, she was a very tiny kitty in a very big house. Because I adore her, I make excuses for her! The household cat boxes must have seemed miles away. She was too tiny to climb into those big cat boxes. She was born outside. Despite my excuses for her and running her to the nearest cat box, she continued to pee where she liked. This would invariable be on the dog bed or the sofa and chair cushions. Every time I put her in a cat box, she acted like I was setting her down in a vat of boiling quicksand. Her feet barely touched the litter before she was springing out of it. She couldn’t get away fast enough.

If you have the pleasure of living your life with a cat, you may have had the additional experience of your cat peeing where you don’t want them to pee. Living in a household with multiple cats sets the stage for at least one of them to inappropriate peeing.

Some cats will always use a cat box regardless of whether it is clean or not. They don’t care how many cats they live with or who uses the cat box. Others do care. If you are having an issue with one of a cat peeing there are several things you can do to resolve the situation. Here are six tips

Tip #1:  By nature, cats have territories. Their territory includes the cat box. It is recommended to have one more cat box than you have cats. This is not necessary if your cats are happy using the boxes you provide. If one of them is peeing inappropriately then you need to add one or more cat boxes in your household. If you have two cats, you need three cat boxes. If you have three cats, you need four cat boxes and so on. Every household is different so use the number of cat boxes that helps resolve the issue. We have five cat boxes for six cats with an occasional sixth cat box. Three of the boxes get the most use. The sixth cat box is added whenever there is a change or added stress in the household.

Tip #2:  Designate a specific box for your fastidious princess. Tell her (or him) that this box is just for them. Keep it clean. Sweep up around it regularly. Place it in a special place. This may be where they have been using as a bathroom or in an out of the way place that you can easily keep clean.

This worked very well for Maia. I originally put it near the dog bed. Not so good for the dog sneaking extra “snacks” out of the cat box. However, it resolved the peeing on the dog bed problem.

Tip #3:  One size does not fit all. For whatever reason, we have big cats. They are your average run of the mill extraordinary domestic shorthairs as far as breeding goes. As for growing, they seem to have reached their maximum growth potentials. When I switched to extra-large cat boxes, there has been less litter scattered around the boxes and less missing the box instances. They are easier to clean. Though they do use more cat litter to fill.

Tip #4:  The type of cat litter you use should be what your cat likes best. Odor control is more important to your cats than to you. Their sense of smell is far more sensitive than your own. If your cats are sensitive to the heavy perfumes in some of the available litters, use an unscented version. You can sprinkle baking soda in the bottom of the litter box before adding the litter for additional odor control.

Tip #5:  Clean cat boxes regularly. The clumping litters are easy to clean with a slotted litter scoop. The scoop size should be appropriate to the size of the box to facilitate easy cleaning. The more often you clean them, the longer the litter lasts.


Tip #6:  Your pets know you best. Look beyond the surface. Is there something your cat is trying to tell you that you are not listening to? Our cats are not only our companions. They are with us to support us on our journey through life as much as we are in their lives to care for them. What is the deeper message? Are you honoring yourself? What is the first thought that comes to your mind? Resolving a cat peeing issue may have nothing to do with the number of cat boxes you have in the house.