Getting the cats you own to stop urinating in the house is difficult. Trying to prevent stray or neighborhood cats from peeing outside of your home, on the porch and patio, or even in your plants or garden sounds impossible. But, it’s not. By taking the proactive and holistic approach outlined below, you’ll prevent cats from peeing on your property and win the “best neighbor of the month” award. Before you get too excited, it’s important that you understand this might not be the easiest solution. But, it’s by far the most effective and humane.
Trap, Neuter, and Release (abbreviated as TNR) is the strategy used by “no kill” shelters to curb pet overpopulation. The premise is simple. Dogs, and especially cats, create offspring at very fast rate. By ensuring that animals in your neighborhood (referred to by TNR experts as a “colony”) are spayed and neutered, you stop pet overpopulation at its source; the breeding of feral or stray cats. (To learn more about TNR, visit the Feral Cat Coalition’s website.)
So what exactly does TNR have to do with cats urinating outside of your home and causing a big stinky problem? A lot! Cats and dogs that aren’t fixed have many more behavioral problems, including inappropriate urination. According to this study by the UC Davis Veterinary School, over 90% of feline marking and spraying behavior stops after a kitty is neutered or spayed. In other words, if the cats that are peeing around the exterior of your home were neutered or spayed, your problem would go away!
Alternative Approaches & Home Remedies for Preventing Stray or Feral Cats From Urinating On Your Property
The Watergun Method
Most cats hate water. Go to a nearby toy store and buy a water-gun. I don’t mean a dinky little plastic water gun; think super soakers or other strong water guns that provide a sustained stream of water. When you see a stray cat walking around your porch, shoot it with water (and only water). The cat should think twice before coming back over to use your porch as a toilet.
Block Holes/Entry Under House
One of the main reasons cats go under homes (where they then tee-tee all over the place) is for shelter. Figure out where the cats are getting in, and block all holes or entrances to the sub-floor or crawl space under your home. Make sure there aren’t any cats under your home when you board it up. Not only would that be a horrible death for a mostly innocent cat, the smell of cat urine would be the least of your worries.
Remove Items That Tempt Cats
Both dogs and cats make repeat visits to spots they’ve marked. By taking the time to make sure the scent or smell is gone, you’ll greatly reduce the chances of another smelly visit from your neighbor’s or a stray cat. Whether the cat peed on your concrete patio, outside furniture, or even an outside carpet will impact the best smell removal and cleaning method.
If you want to really solve the problem and not use a band-aide approach, TNR is your best bet. Contact a local No-Kill animal shelter and they’ll likely fix any cats you trap for free. This method is humane, effective, and holistic. You’ll have fewer strays around your home and the ones you do have won’t urinate, mark, or spray your porch, patio, garage, or other areas outside of your home.