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Female cat spraying

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 
I have a female cat, who is 4 and a half years old and spayed and is spraying the sofa and numerous other places. She was spayed only about 6 months ago. The reason she wasnt spayed at an early age is because the vet I took her to said she had a heart problem and not to because it was too risky, but it turned out she didnt have a heart problem or she grew out of it. She has never had kittens either. Has anyone ever had to deal with a female cat spraying? She did it before she was spayed and quit for a while after she was spayed. I have bought Feliway spray, and Feliway plug in and extra litter boxes and so far it hasnt helped. I think I have figured out why she is doing it but dont know how to get her to stop. We have another female cat that is my daughters and it seems like all the places she has been this cat has sprayed. She doesnt like this cat, they dont fight and the other cat pays her no attention but they stay their distance from one another. I think I know what the problem is but dont know how to get her to stop this behavior. Any ideas? I have bought enzyme cleaner, Natures Miracle and cleaned the spot where she marked the sofa, but I'm getting rid of it in a couple of weeks for a new one, you think I should spray the new one with Feliway right away when it comes? I was so hoping she would stop the marking when she was spayed and she did for a while and then started up again. Any ideas?
post #2 of 4
First, we need to know for sure that the problem is spraying rather than urinating. If the cat is standing and the pee shoots straight back so that she is aiming high on the wall or side of the couch, it is spraying. If the cat squats while peeing, it is normal urination.

If the cat is peeing (not spraying) inappropriately, you need to get her to the vet ASAP. The #1 cause of inappropriate urination is urinary tract infections or blockages. Given the stress your female is under, that may be what is going on. You can also read some of the other posts on this forum for other great ideas for stopping inappropriate urination.

If the cat is spraying...she is marking her territory. Basically, she's saying this is my place, not yours! This can be a difficult habit to break but it is absolutely possible to do so.

Try the following ideas and also do a search for spraying on this forum for excellent ideas on other threads.

1. Use Feliway to help her not want to spray. Feliway mimics the friendly marking that cats do when they rub their faces on things. When a cat smells a friendly scent, they are unlikely to mark with urine. The Feliway box will give detailed instructions on how to use it....follow the instructions carefully.

2. Hang aluminum foil on the places the cat likes to spray. Cats usually will not spray on foil because it makes an unpleasant sound when hit with the urine and it makes the urine splash back on the cat. Each day that the cat does not spray a strip of foil, tear about an inch off the bottom of the foil until the foil is completely gone. Don't remove the whole strip all at once because the cat may interpret this as you saying it is okay to spray here again.

3. If you see the cat getting into the spray position, yell "No!" and then grab her and put her in time-out (in the bathroom for example) for only 2-3 minutes. Do the same if you caught her in the act.

4. Check to see if there are stray cats hanging out outside your house. A cat will often spray in response to strange cats around the house. Make sure you don't walk through outside cat spray and track that smell into the house.

5. Be patient and persistent. Breaking the spraying habit can take a while, but it should work.

Good luck!
post #3 of 4
I too would take her in and rule out a urinary or otherwise troublesome infection. That is usually why they are spraying, because they need to release the pain and irritation that they are under.
post #4 of 4
Hissy is right (of course). Cats sometimes spray due to illness or pain. Whenever a problem behavior occurs it is always wise to have the vet check for a medical cause.
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