Why Has My 9 Month Old Cat Started to Wee in the House?

by Julie
(Hampshire)

I have 3 cats, the oldest being Archie who is 9 years old and he is a very friendly, homely cat. My other 2 cats are now 9 months old. They were re-homed to me by Cats Protection after they were found abandoned in a cardboard box in the woods at 3 weeks old. I have had them since they were 7 weeks old.


I did my research about integrating cats and Archie took to them very well. Jasper adores Archie and used to follow him around, but Poppy has always been a bit timid and only likes to be fussed on her terms.

Poppy and Jasper always used their litter trays when they were kittens and I had no problems with them going to the toilet any other place than their litter tray, but recently (in the last 6 weeks) Poppy has been weeing in the house.

She did it a couple of times in the bedroom and then in my partners shoes, but the last few times have been on the kitchen work top.

We monitored when she is doing this and it seems to happen after she has had her breakfast so I have started to put her outdoors after she has had breakfast which for the last week did the trick.

But we went away at the weekend and my friend (who the cats know very well) fed them and when we returned last night there was more wee on the kitchen surface.

Do you know why she might be doing this and how I can stop her from doing this?

Thank you
Julie


Reply from Liz (Editor): I have a couple of ideas as to what may be causing this cat behavior, hopefully I can help.

How many litter trays do you have in the house? Is Poppy really fussy about using a clean one? The general rule is one more tray than the number of cats. If you've got a very fussy cat who will refuse to wee in a tray if it's even got one other small wee in it, you may have to increase the number of trays.

Is she able to do a wee in peace when she uses the tray or is she being disturbed by one of the other cats? If it's the latter, providing a tray somewhere where she can have some privacy may help.

The fact she's taken to using the kitchen worktops is interesting. Cats with a cat urinary tract infection often choose baths, sinks and kitchen worktops to pee on, because they're cool surfaces. It may be worth taking her to the vet to rule this out.

The other reason why she's peeing in the house could be stress-related. Is she being picked on by one of the other cats? Has something happened that's upset her - for example some sort of change? This could well have been the reason for her behavior when you went away recently - even if she likes the people who looked after her, she still got worried becuase you weren't there. Something like a Feliway diffuser may help if this is the case - it's available from good pet stores (e.g. Pets at Home) and online. It's a synthetic version of a feline pheromone, available as a spray or a plug-in diffuser, which has a calming effect on some cats.

This section of the website goes through the different reasons why cats won't use litter trays in more detail and may be of help if you haven't read it already:

Litter Box Problems - Causes and Solutions

Best of luck with solving this and thank you for your question.

Comments for Why Has My 9 Month Old Cat Started to Wee in the House?

Click here to add your own comments

Update
by: Julie

Hi Liz,

Thank you for your reply.

I do not have litter trays in the house as all 3 cats go outside to toilet, but I have now introduced a tray in the kitchen again when she has been weeing, though it has not yet been used.

I took Poppy to the vets to rule out the urinary infection and the vet found no medical problems with her and gave her a clean bill of health. So they also suggested Feliway, the spray.

I have been using the spray everyday and so far there has been no weeing in the house, so fingers crossed this may do the trick.

Once again, thank you for your advice and I will let you know if I have any other problems.

Julie

Click here to add your own comments

Return to Your Cat Behavior Questions.