Is Toby the cat spraying everything and everyone in sight? Is this resulting in unwanted messes in the house? Is Toby on the way out the door for good?
Male cats are known to spray when they are looking female cats to come around. Toby, for example, may be marking his territory to let other cats in the area know that this is his territory and no one is welcome.
Sue the female cat, on the other hand, is in heat and is, naturally, leaving behind puddles of urine on the floor and even on your fresh, clean linen. Unfortunately, her family will then step and sit in it. Sue will get her heat cycle every 2-3 weeks during breeding season.
One option that you may want to consider is having her spayed. It has been shown that around 90% of female cats who have been spayed have stopped spraying the way Sue does, saving your floors and your furniture. This makes life with your cat easier and more enjoyable.
If you are choosing not to have the spay done at this time, there are other ways that you can help your cat through this period.
Intact cats tend to attempt mating at night. Playing with them during the daytime and tiring them out with enriching activities may help keep other intact cats away while your cat is asleep at night.
Make a room just for your cat. Since they will continue to spray at times, you will want to have the flooring in the room easy to clean up, such as hardwood or tile. Make sure the litter box is in the room, clean and free of any droppings. Make a soft, comfortable bed for him or her - this may include washable pillows, blankets, and their favorite toy. If the room is a guest room, you may want to cover the bed and any chairs with plastic in case your cat attempts to spray furniture. There are also scat mats that can help to keep him off furniture. Make sure the room has a window and that he is allowed to perch.
Make sure he has water and healthy food in the room, making sure not to leave an excess amount. If your cat eats or drinks too much, he will want to go out for a bathroom break in the middle of the night; this may pose a problem for cats who are trained to relieve themselves outside.
Placing your cat in a pet carrier when you are not home, or at night time, can help control their urge to find a mate; however, one drawback to this is that he may start to meow and vocalize, and this could keep you up at night. Putting the carrier in a room with the door closed, far enough away from the rest of the household, can help with this.
When they do spray or leave puddles of urine, there are different types of chemical products on the market and at pet stores that can help take care of the lingering smells and damage to your furniture. Consider purchasing these products well in advance, so that you are ready to clean during these times.
Spraying is a natural behavior in intact cats. Take precaution when spraying is evident, and get ahead in preparing your cats for this type of behavior; don’t let Toby or Sue spray you out of the house.