Common Urinary Problems in Cats
By Lorie Huston, DVM
Inappropriate urination is one of the most common problem behaviors observed in cats and one of the most common reasons cats are abandoned at shelters. Yes, it can be frustrating when your cat starts urinating outside of the litter box. However, it is also important to remember that cats don’t exhibit this type of behavior out of spite or to seek revenge. Inappropriate urination is a sign that something is wrong with your cat.
Why Do Cats Urinate Outside the Litter Box?
There are many reasons a cat may start peeing outside of the litter box. In some cases, the cat may be marking its territory. The cat may also be spraying, or urinating on a vertical surface such as a wall. Spraying is always a form of marking, but marking is not always accomplished by spraying. Some cats will mark horizontal surfaces or particular items. A common misconception is that only male cats spray or mark. However, female cats may also spray or mark their territory.
In other cases, your cat may simply dislike something about the litter box. The box may not be clean enough; the box may be in a location where the cat gets frightened or harassed while using the box; or your cat may simply prefer a different type of litter or substrate to relieve itself in or on.