Why does my cat pee outside the box?

  • I have him an anxiety compound from my vet, he's been on it for about five yrs! He is still peeing outside his box, any suggestions ?? I've tried everything

  • Hi Joan,

    There are many reasons why a cat will urinate outside of the litter box. This can be very daunting to determine. Medical conditions are often a likely cause. And even the medications themselves can be a contributor to the issue. 
    Other reasons for this behaviour include; sudden changes within the home. Someone recently moved in (or out), cats (or a neighbor dog) in the area outside are causing him stress, the location of the litterbox is not to his liking, was there any changes to the litter style type?, multi-cats in the home sharing litterboxes, how often is the litter box cleaned? Some cats can go a few days without a cleaning - others prefer their boxes be cleaned daily etc. Whatever the issue, he is trying to tell you something. 

    Consider a trip to the veterinarian for a complete consultation. Getting a second opinion from another veterinarian within your community can also be beneficial in your search for answers. 

  • Hi there, this is Dr Linda.

    I echo Nicole that the first step here is in ruling in or out a medical cause for this behaviour.

    In a male, we would consider:


    • FLUTD
    • Urinary crystals or bladder stones
    • A bladder polyp or mass
    • A urinary infection 
    • Etc.


    The first step is usually a vet check where we will feel the bladders and kidneys and analyse the urine. We may also scan the bladder.


    Treatment depends on what is going on and may include e.g. a urinary diet, bladder supplements and anti inflammatories.


    If a medical issue is ruled out, we usually find that this behaviour is stress related.


    Ensure he has access to 2 clean trays at all times and that any stained areas are thoroughly cleansed using an enzymatic cleaner to prevent re-soiling.

    Given the duration of the signs, presumably any carpet would be soaked through so we sometimes need to replace the flooring in situations like this.


    If not neutered, this must be considered to avoid scent marking.


    Hopefully we start to see some improvement soon.

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