While male cats are known to spray water, some female cats may also exhibit this unwelcome behavior. No cat owner likes it when their cat squirts water, but the behavior often manifests as the cat tries to say something. Learn why your female feline squirts and what you can do to help relieve stress and frustration for you and your cat.
What is urine spraying?
Female cats may urinate outside their litter box and pee inappropriately, but when they urinate vertically instead of on the ground, this is called spraying or marking.
When cats mark, urine can be sprayed on walls, furniture or other surfaces. Your cat will stand up, lift its tail, shiver, and go back to the item it’s going to spray. Usually only a small amount of urine is ejected, rather than the steady stream that occurs during normal squatting urination.
Why does a female cat squirt?
Like male cats, female cats may squirt for a variety of reasons, but these can often be categorized as reactions to environmental stressors or territorial behavior.
Environmental stressors may include new arrivals such as a baby in the house, a new puppy or other animal that annoys or upsets your cat, construction or remodeling in your home, boredom or lack of playtime in your feeding regimen, litter problems , such as smelly or dirty litter, litter boxes that cats don’t like, such as lidded or self-cleaning boxes, etc. Basically, if your cat is upset or stressed about something it might squirt, you might also have a hard time figuring out what exactly your cat is upset about.
Territorial reasons for spraying may include outdoor cats that your cat can see or hear while indoors, or even a new cat in your home. Sprinkle water to tell other cats that the space is already taken up by them and they can’t mess around.
Can a female cat still spray after being neutered?
Neutering and neutering a female cat makes her less likely to spray, but a small percentage of cats still spray after this procedure. According to the Cornell Feline Health Center, 5 percent of female cats continue to be sprayed even after neutering. Neutering your cat can especially help reduce the territorial reasons for spraying, as fewer hormones affect it, but if your cat is stressed or disturbed by something in the environment, it’s still capable of spraying.
How to stop squirting
Inappropriate elimination of all types, including urine spraying, can be difficult and frustrating to stop, but there are a few things you can do.
- sterilized – The best way to reduce urine spraying of female cats is to neuter them. This is usually done at a young age, but can also be done on older cats. Your veterinarian will recommend the age at which your cat should be spayed.
- Neutralize odors—— If your cat is spraying inside the house, the first thing you need to do is get rid of the odor. But simply cleaning and deodorizing won’t stop your female cat from spraying the same spot again, so you’ll want to make sure you use an enzymatic cleaner to clean up the urine.
- Replacing the litter box or litter box – If you suspect that your female cat is spraying water from the litter box or litter box, consider switching to unscented litter from a shallow, uncovered litter box.
- Get rid of stressors – If something in or around your home is causing your cat to feel uneasy or stressed, do everything you can to get rid of the stressor, or at least stop your cat from seeing and hearing it. Of course, this is not always possible, depending on what the environmental stressor is.
- Pheromones – Sprays, wipes and inserts can be used to provide your cat with natural pheromones. Pheromones are odorless and help to relax stressed cats.
- Anxiety medicine- If you can’t get rid of your cat’s stressors, prescription medications may help relax your cat.
- Anxiety Supplements – Similar to anxiety medications, various supplements such as L-theanine, whey protein, and colostrum may help calm cats and reduce the incidence of squirting.
- special diet – Your veterinarian can provide a therapeutic diet, which may help reduce urine spraying. These diets often contain calming ingredients, similar to anxiety supplements.