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Has ANYONE ever been successful?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Okay. I have been a member of this site for a couple of months, and I have read MANY MANY sad threads about cats spraying. I have even offered my two cents on some of these threads, all the while dealing with my 8-year-old neutered male cat who has picked up this nasty habit during the past couple of months. This just so happens to coincide with my trying to save a life by bringing in a feral female (now spayed) somewhat aggressive young cat.

I kid you not, I read about the Feliway diffusers, ordered a couple (for the female's aggression), and it seems as though my male cat began spraying the day I plugged them in. Right beside them. My vet actually suggested I unplug them; that perhaps he is sensing another cat with pheromones floating around my house. And the female has calmed down considerably; doesn't seem to miss them.

My question is this: has ANYBODY, ANYWHERE reading this had success in stopping a cat from spraying once it has started? I've tried to nip this in the bud, I need to get a really good cleaner (is Nature's Miracle the best?) - and I've read the sticky threads to get knowledge.

I understand he doesn't like the female cat, and God knows I've probably screwed up things around here by bringing her in. I'm quite attached to her now, and there really is nowhere else for her to go. He tolerates her, he just doesn't want to be friends. So she's staying. And if I did ship her off, what would the guarantee be that he would stop spraying?

If anyone can offer me a positive response to my question, I will be thrilled, and perhaps even able to sleep nights instead of stressing about this.
post #2 of 10
Good luck........
post #3 of 10
I've not had any experience with sprayers myself, but the cat therapist that helped Mimosa's anxiety says that spraying is very easy to solve. 8 weeks per cat is her average time. But she also warns to seek professional help as soon as possible and not waste time trying all the kinds of good meaning but essentially useless tips first. Most people waste a lot of time with tin foil, orange peels, pepper etc, while the behaviour gets more and more routine to the cat.
post #4 of 10
Yes, Nature's Miracle and Urine Gone are the two I use. They are both very good. One of mine is a sprayer and he sprayed a white stuffed animal I have. Needless to say it was yellow, I sprayed it on the stuffed animal and you could see the stain disappear (Natures Miracle. I did have good results from Feliway, it was months that he didn's spray. But then we had a cat outside that would always jump up on the window ledge outside and start fighting with my cat on the other side of the window. Then he started spraying again. I am now trying to keep him away from the windows. Good luck with your situation.
post #5 of 10
The spraying is your male's cat way of balancing the scent in the home. When you bring a new cat into a home already established by a resident cat, the scent changes. The alpha cats are instinctively driven to make their home smell more familiar and will begin spraying his (or her) scent to claim the home again as his territory. This urine has been found to contain many different messages to the other cats.

One of the best books out there that addresses this problem is Cat Wrangling Made Easy by Dusty Rainbolt. She fosters and often deals with this prickly problem and in several chapters she talks about what it is and what to do about it.

One thing I can tell you for sure is if you have a sprayer, you really can't stop the behavior short of drugging the cat into oblivion. I have four sprayers and they all started when I brought in a feral cat and put him in our bedroom. He sprayed like a fire hose and there was urine even on the ceiling! It was nasty because he also sprayed the heat register while we were away and this distributed his scent all over our home.

The best product I have found on the market is Urine-off. You can order it online. Another essential tool is a carpet shampooer- a good scrubber with a detachable brush. Bissell makes a good one and you can find a good price at places like WalMart or Target. You also need a blacklight a good one to find all the urine spots. They will return every few days to the exact spot and refresh it with fresh urine.

Just don't get mad at your boy. He is doing something nature programmed him to do- and you really can't stop it. I wouldn't be bringing anymore cats in the home either or the spraying will esculate.

Good luck-

post #6 of 10
Talk to your Vet about a 4 month course of Prozac. Kitty dose of course.
He will be sleepy for the 1st few days, then perk back up to normal activity.

This works to stop the obsession about territory, which causes the spraying.

We used a 4 month course on one of our pet bengals who compusively groomed himself, to the point he was nearly bald. He went off the prozac after 4 months and hasn't returned to this behavior.

Ask your Vet. There is also another drug commonly used called, Amitriptyline, but my understanding is that it is not as effective as prozac.
post #7 of 10
I did not have success stopping my male. Feliway, Buspar, Elavil, Prozac...all failed.

Nature's Miracle and other cleaners were not adequate for my needs. What I finally found that worked was:

2 cups hydrogen peroxide
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 drops liquid dish soap

Saturate the stain and allow to dry slowly. After 24 hours, blot excess and allow to dry completely.

Good luck. I understand what you're feeling.

post #8 of 10
My Stumpy sprays Feliway plug-ins. I can't use them in my house either. They are effective roughly 65% of the time, but you will always find the cats that are threatened by the pheremones they release.

I have 3 sprayers, and the behavior starts whenever the balance is upset in the house. My tactic is to find the triggers and address those first and foremost. What triggers things in my household include the following:
- someone in the house is sick and is hiding signs from me
- my normal daily routine has changed
- we introduce a new animal to the house (dog or cat)
- cats hit a certain age and feel the need to prove themselves
- a cat doesn't feel that they are getting enough attention from me

Other than the normal daily routine, all of the other triggers fall back to feeling threatened by their status in the house. I focus on keeping as normal a routine as I can, making sure that every cat has sufficient attention and love as I can give them, and not doing anything that would lower their status in the eyes of the other cats.

For example, I used to feed Stumpy on our dining room table. He gets meds in his food and I have to separate him from the other cats. Pinky was put out by this, so I put his bowl up there also. Pinky stopped spraying once he felt as important as Stumpy. Height is an important status to cats. Stumpy ate in a higher place, therefore Pinky felt like he was a lesser cat and felt compelled to make his statement.

It's the little things that you do that can make a huge difference. Sometimes you have to be very creative.
post #9 of 10
Momofmany, that is very, very interesting. Do you have any other examples of similar behavior?
post #10 of 10
good luck to you
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