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Why Do Cats Pee on Their Human's Bed?

Why does your cat pee on your bed?

It might be one of the most frustrating things that can happen to you as a cat owner: your cat is peeing on your bed.

Why do cats do this, and what can you do to stop it?

Cats That Urinate Inappropriately May Have a Medical Problem

The first thing you must consider anytime your cat is urinating outside of the litter box is that she might have a medical problem. Urinary tract infection, diabetes, and kidney disease are all common conditions in cats that can cause an inability to make it to the litter box or an aversion to using the box.

If your cat urinates on your bed or anywhere else that isn't the litter box, make an appointment with your veterinarian right away.

Stress and Anxiety Can Cause Inappropriate Urination

After medical conditions, stress and anxiety are the most common causes of inappropriate urination in cats.

Cats can be stressed or anxious about many things that humans might not immediately recognize. Poor litter box conditions are chief among these. A box that isn't kept clean enough, is in a spot that doesn't feel safe to the kitty, or that contains litter that is objectionable to the cat are all stressful situations for a finicky feline, and they're all reasons to urinate elsewhere.

  • Be sure you are scooping the litter box multiple times daily, emptying it out and washing the box with warm water and soap weekly, and replacing the box every six months.
  • Keep as many litter boxes as you have cats plus one. Cats don't like to urinate in dirty litter boxes, and if you don't have enough boxes, they're sure to get dirty fast.
  • Keep at least one litter box on every floor of your home. Cats might not want or be able to travel too far in search of a box when they have to go.
  • Don't put the litter box in an area with loud noises, heavy traffic, or where a cat might get "trapped" by a dog or other feline housemates.

Cats can also be stressed by the addition of new family members (human, feline, or canine), a change in schedule for the humans in the household, visitors, or construction or other hub-bub around the home.

Your Cat Might Miss You

If you have a change in your schedule or suddenly aren't spending as much time interacting with your cat as you used to, she might urinate on your side of the bed as a way of coping. Combining her scent with yours might help her feel closer to you in your absence.

Your Kitty Is Not Being Spiteful

Many people naturally assume that a cat that is urinating on their bed is doing it out of spite; that she is angry about something and trying to get back at her owner. This is not the case. Rather, your cat is simply trying to cope with something, either a medical condition or some type of stressful situation, and felines cope differently than humans do.

What Can You Do to Keep Your Cat from Peeing on Your Bed?

Again, check with your veterinarian first. If medical conditions are ruled out, be sure you go through the checklist above and correct any litter box problems that might be going on.

Increase your interactive play time with your cat. Use wand toys to help your cat release stress and anxiety.

If your cat likes to cuddle, be sure you are getting enough snuggle time in with her daily, so she feels connected to you and less anxious.

Use Feliway, a compound that mimics the feline calming pheromone that mother cats emit to quiet their kittens. You may wish to diffuse it near your bed or spray it around the room at nose level for your cat.

Clean any areas where your cat has urinated inappropriately well with an enzymatic cleaner, so she doesn't continue to mark over it.

Don't react with anger toward your cat when you discover the urine on your bed. Yelling, hitting, or other negative attention will damage the bond you have with your cat, and it won't stop the problem. In fact, it will cause your cat stress that is likely to increase unwanted behaviors.

You may wish to keep the door to your bedroom closed while you are implementing some of the techniques we've discussed.

You can also try playing with and giving your cat treats on the bed. Cats don't like to urinate near where they eat, so you may be able to change your cat's mental association of the bed from a place to pee to a place to play and eat.