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How to Clean Cat Urine & Spray

Posted By Tipnut On December 14, 2006 @ 9:53 am In General | 52 Comments

Trying to clean stains and the smell from cats urinating on carpets is tricky business but removing carpets, padding and floor boards is not an easy or practical thing to do for many.

TabbyHere’s a handy tipsheet to help you get the job done. Next you’ll find tips and recipes for dealing with spray from adults.


  • Any treatment to carpets could discolor or damage the fibers. Always test in a small, unnoticeable corner first.


  • Try finding all the spots where the urine is, you may be surprised at how many there are.
  • You can do this by using a black lightbulb in a lamp or by purchasing a handheld black light…the urine will glow in the dark with your black light on.

Method #1

1 16-oz. bottle Hydrogen Peroxide
1 TBS Baking Soda
1 tsp dish detergent (liquid)

  • Mix ingredients into an old plastic container and stir well with a plastic or wooden spoon (do not use metal utensils or metal dishes).
  • Once powder is dissolved, pour liquid into a plastic squirt bottle and squirt on stain, completely saturate the spot and surrounding area. Do not scrub or touch the spot, leave the solution to set and air dry for at least one hour.
  • After it’s completely dry, vacuum the spot–there may be baking soda residue. You can wipe with a rag if needed.

Method #2

  • Scrub spot thoroughly with soap and carpet cleaner. Then saturate the stain with hydrogen peroxide and allow to dry naturally.

Method #3

  • Scrub out the stain as best you can then saturate spot with Listerine (original) or malt vinegar to kill the smell. Do this 2 or 3 times a day for a few days until there is no more smell.

Method #4

  • Try commercial products such as Spot Shot, Nature’s Miracle

Removing From Washable Items

  • If it’s on your clothes, blankets or something washable, simply load the washing machine with the items and pour in a large bottle of malt vinegar. This helps kill the odor so the animal won’t smell it and urinate on the item again.

If your pet keeps returning to a spot to do it again, it’s because she still smells it from before and this will trigger her to do it again. You must remove the odor completely before she’ll stop.

If the above tips don’t stop the behavior, try pouring a box of baking soda over the area and leave it sit there for 30 days (!). You could also try setting a bowl of vinegar right beside the spot, this may deter your pet and break the behavior.

Please Note: Cats urinating in the home could be a sign of a medical problem (such as kidney or bladder infections). Check with your vet.


*First published June 16, 2009 and moved to this page for better organization

If you’ve ever had a tomcat stroll by and spray around your basement window or front door, you know what a stink that is!

This is pretty potent stuff and the smell is not something that dissipates easily. The quicker you wash it up, the better chance you have of avoiding a repeat performance (the spray from one can trigger more action from others).

Here are a couple recipes I have on hand for both indoor and outdoor messes along with some deterrent suggestions.

Recipe #1

This is to tackles messes outside the home, be aware that this treatment may affect lawn and plants that the solution comes in contact with. If it’s on surfaces like the house, windows, patio, sidewalk, deck, etc., scrub the mixture in with a brush before rinsing off with clear water.

  • 3/4 cup Original Tide (or any laundry detergent with enzymes)
  • 1 quart hot water

After washing the area, spread a thick layer of baking soda over the spot after the surface is mostly dry or a mix of 50/50 vinegar and water. This will help dispel odor and (hopefully) deter future incidents.


  • You could also try washing the area with a garden hose then pouring straight vinegar around the area, this might just do the trick for you (may also affect plant life).
  • If you can’t get to it immediately, try to at least throw a bucket of water on the area to dilute the area until you can get to it.

Recipe #2

This recipe is to tackle jobs inside the home, test an area for colorfastness first.

1 16-oz. bottle Hydrogen Peroxide
1 TBS Baking Soda
1 tsp dish detergent (liquid)


There are various plants and methods you can use to try and deter the neighborhood prowlers from your property, a few suggestions:

  • Citrus rinds tossed in the flower beds (orange and lemon peels).
  • Coffee grounds.
  • Fill flower beds with a thick layer of pine cones, rocks and cedar chips. If they can’t dig in the dirt, they’ll look elsewhere.
  • Plants: They aren’t fond of Lavender, Marigolds and Chamomile. Also try plants that have strong scents since they don’t tend to like them.

A very effective deterrent is a motion activated sprinkler, they’re not that expensive and animals will scat as soon as the water starts. Each time a critter comes into range, the sprinkler will automatically turn on and soak it with water. If you can’t find one locally, they are listed on Amazon.

Many folks try to discourage these animals from entering their yard not only to prevent spraying, but also to protect their own house pet from being exposed to nasties like roundworm eggs and the Toxoplasmosis parasite (and to avoid finding feces in their garden). If you find keeping them off your property is impossible, consider planting catnip [1] in a far corner away from where you want them, most will happily stalk the area and hang out there ;).

Did You Know:

  • They will spray for a variety of reasons including marking territory, proclaim mating intentions, as well as a symptom of stress and anxiety.
  • Both males and females will do it, neutered or not, but it is mainly the un-neutered male that is the culprit.
  • Cat spray is urine and pheromones.

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[1] planting catnip: http://tipnut.com/grow-your-own-catnip/

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