Why does my cat smell like urine?
If you found yourself asking this question or are in this predicament, don’t despair, there are some very common reasons for a feline to emit this odor and some simple solutions. In this article we will cover the science behind the stench, reasons why your cat may smell of this bodily fluid and ways to combat the problem.
When you’re in the midst of the “sniff” you may be wondering why cat pee smells so bad. According to PetMD, it’s not the urine itself that tends to smell (although, some cases can) it’s the fact that some cats may not urinate inside the litter box, but rather on a carpet, in a corner or anywhere else that catches its feline fancy. Once the urine soaks into an object and begins to decay, the bacterium in the pee will give off that typical, tell-tale odor. In addition, the second stage of decaying urine liquid waste is the mercaptans (this is the foul smell emitted by skunks) so the longer the decaying process is allowed to proceed (without being cleaned up) the more of the mercaptans will be produced.
We know why it stinks, now let’s explore the reasons why your cat may smell like urine.
The first thing you should do if your cat smells of urine is to check out its rear end. Are there matts that may be trapping the fluid? If so you will want to groom them out. You can do this yourself or enlist the help of a professional pet groomer.
If your cat’s backend is free of matted hair, then you will have to dig deeper for the cause of the problem. Watch its behavior for any changes in diet, litter box usage and general pain. If you see changes in its normal behavior, make an appointment with your veterinarian. He or she will examine your pet and possibly take some blood work to pinpoint the cause. Once he or he has made a diagnosis, be sure to follow the care instructions to help eliminate the cause.
The trouble with cat pee on any surface is the longer it sits and stays, the stronger the odor becomes. For this reason you will want to clean it up as soon as possible.
There is the old standby of vinegar in a spray bottle to spot-spray and remove the smell. This works because vinegar is an acid that neutralizes the smell of fresh pee or the alkaline salts of old dried pee. If you have a larger area to cover you can use one part vinegar to one equal part of water. This is useful if you aren’t sure where the smell is coming from and want to do a general mop of floors and walls.
Enzyme-based cleaners are also effective in the treatment of cat pee. These specifically made products will change the organic make up of the urine, which can then be washed or mopped away. These can be purchased at your local pet retailer or online.
If your cat stinks of urine, then be sure to check her backend for matts. If this is all clear, then be sure to monitor her behavior and make an appointment with your veterinarian if needed. Remember, the cat urine smell will not go away on its own, so be proactive to clean it up and get Kitty checked out.