6 Reasons Why Your Cat Urinates Outside the Litter Box

Cat's Litter Box

Has your cat been peeing everywhere around your house except in its litter box?

Urinary problems are widespread with felines, and it can really be frustrating for cat owners when their cats engage in inappropriate urination.

Some owners get so upset that they even have to consider rehoming their cats.

In this article, you will learn how to deal with urinary problems in your pet cats, as well as ways in which you can prevent such issues in the first place.

Table of Contents

Why do cats urinate outside the litter box?

There are many reasons why cats might begin to deal with urinary issues, so before you can take steps to correct the problem, it is vital to understand why your cat is urinating inappropriately.

One of two general reasons could be responsible for why your cat is engaging in inappropriate peeing activities: a behavioral issue or a medical problem.

Medical causes of inappropriate peeing in cats

If your feline is urinating inappropriately, the first step you must take is to visit a veterinarian. The vet should then do a physical examination of your pet and also check its urine sample.

The vet would recommend treatment based on the results of the test.

The following are some of the most common urinary medical issues that cats experience:

Urinary tract infection

bacteria in cat urine is what causes an inflammatory response in the animals’ urinary tract.

The good part is that antibiotics can be used to treat urinary tract infections; however, after the antibiotics are finished, your vet may recommend follow-up testing to ensure that the infection is completely gone.


This condition involves crystals forming in your cat’s urine and causing irritation to its urinary tract. However, crystalluria does not, in every case, accompany a urinary tract infection.

When the ph of your cat’s urine is either too low or too high, crystals develop. Struvite crystals are the most common type of crystals in urine.

A slightly less common kind of crystal that can also be found in cat urine is called calcium oxalate.

To treat crystals in a cat’s urine, you may not need more than just changing the animals’ diet, but there is also a chance that investments prescribed some anti-inflammatory medication.

You may also need to get some antibiotics if your vet notices the presence of a secondary infection.

Bladder stones

Some cats develop real stones in their bladder, which could lead to irritation and, in some cases, blockage: bladder stones may be accompanied by crystals to become a precursor of radiographs may become necessary to help your vet determine the size and quantity of the stones if they suspect that your cat has bladder stones.

You might be able to dissolve smaller bladder stones with a special diet, but for the larger ones, they often need to be removed surgically.

It is also widespread for a cat with bladder stones to have a urinary tract infection, and if that is the case, antibiotic treatment will become necessary.

Idiopathic cystitis

Cystitis is a term that is used to refer to inflammation of the bladder. Idiopathic, on the other hand, means that the cause is unknown. Cats dealing with cystitis also have urine in their blood; this is called hematuria.

Testing the urine sample becomes very important because the blood in the cat urine may only be detected microscopically.

If your vet can determine that the cat’s urine contains traces of blood but does not contain any stones, bacterias, or crystals, the likely diagnosis for the condition will be idiopathic cystitis.

When one or more of the above-listed urinary issues become chronic, the condition is typically referred to as feline lower urinary tract disease.

If your cat is diagnosed with this condition, your veterinarian, mary, commend supplements to support the urinary tract or a special urinary diet.

Urinary problems can cause serious urinary obstruction, especially in male felines. If your pet cat is experiencing urinary issues, you should not delay the visit to the vet.

If your cat is trying hard to urinate and little or no urine seems to be coming out, it could mean that your cat’s mines be partially obstructed or even blocked.

There are cases when inappropriate urination occurs when your pet cats he’s not dealing with a urinary health condition.

Your cat may keep peeing anywhere but in its litter box because it is experiencing some discomfort or pain everywhere in its body.

It is better to have your vet run a comprehensive lab work to look for any health issues that may be making your cats behave in such a manner.

If no health issue is found after the exam and their analysis, then there is a high chance it is a behavioral problem and not a medical problem.

Some conditions that the lab tests may reveal include kidney diseases and diabetes. If any of these are discovered, allow your vet to begin treatment on your animal mediately.

Behavioral Reasons

If no medical issue is discovered to be the reason for your cat’s inappropriate urination, it is vital to determine what other factors could be causing such behavior.

Dirty litter box

Cats are really particular about their litter boxes. Your cat may just be avoiding its litter box because it’s too dirty for it, or maybe the litter box is immaculate but otherwise uncomfortable for use.

The litter box may be too small, and for that reason, your cat may not be comfortable getting into it to urinate. The location of the litter box as well may lead to such behavioral problems.

If your cat’s litter box is covered, this may bother the animal.

You should also check to ensure that the litter box does not have a strong smell or feel annoying on your cat’s paws.


Your cat may be trying to inform you that it is stressed out at home. It may be unhappy that you have other animals in your house, and for that reason, it is marking out its territories to send a message to those other animals.

Your cat may also feel like it will get harmed by other animals if it tries to access the litter box when those animals are out and about. If you also have a new human in the house, your cat may become uncomfortable and decide to “act out.”

You must always bear in mind that cats are sensitive to the tiniest of changes in their environment.

Regardless of the source of the stress, ensure that your cat has a quiet place where it can always go and have its personal time and also make sure that the new human or animal in the house does not have access to that hiding place.

Make sure that your home is a place where your cats can always be happy to be. Provide plenty of feline enrichment and vertical space.

Remember to have enough time to spend with your cart so that it can be happy and comfortable.

If your cats do not stop peeing everywhere after making all these environmental changes, your vet may prescribe supplements on medications that will help reduce anxiety and stress in your pet.

The smell of old urine

If your cat has urinated in an area and you have done your part to clean it up, there is still a chance that the scent might remain.

The sense of smell of a human is not as good as that of a cat; thus, while you might not be able to smell the old urine, your cats can easily sniff it out.

If the smell of old urine is still somewhere in your home, there is a perfect chance that you keep returning to that place because it can still perceive the smell.

For this reason, you must clean every area where your cat has urinated thoroughly using a special cleaner and also air fresheners.

How to stop your feline from peeing everywhere outside the litter box?

One of the most common reasons wats urinate everywhere else, but their litter box is that they do not like it.

If your cat is engaging in inappropriate urination activities and your vet has ruled out medical issues, then the next thing you want to access is the litter box you have provided for the animal.

  1. Start by making sure that the litter box is as desirable as possible. Go for the largest litterboxes you can find and ensure that they are always open. Your cat may feel caged insider covered litter boxes, especially if your cat is one of those large of fluffy ones.
  2. Make sure that your cat litter box is kept in a quiet and accessible area of your home. See to it that where your cat eats is not close to where the litter box is located. For the sake of your cat’s privacy and also for your own aesthetic purpose, consider using a decorative screen to separate other areas from where your cat litter box is.
  3. If you have a kitten or an older cat who has trouble climbing stairs make sure that the litter box is not kept in a place that requires jumping. You should also consider getting a shallow litter box for such cats or placing a ramp at the entrance of the litter box.
  4. Look for a very nice litter box that your cat would enjoy using make sure that it is not centered and it is also a scoopable one.
  5. A lot of vets recommend that you have one litter box per feline and an extra one too. Which means that you should have at least two litter boxes even if it is just a single cat you have. Some cats do not enjoy using one litter box for both peeing and pooping so when you have two litter boxes per cat; they become more comfortable. And if you have more than one cat in your home, giving each cat at least two little boxes would prevent competition when is little box time.

In general, the easiest way to stopping inappropriate peeing activities or preventing such altogether is by being a responsible and attentive cat owner.

Take your cat to the vet for regular checkups and also minimize stress in your feline’s environment.

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