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Cat Urine Odor: Top Ways To Stop It Fast And Remove the Smell

By Dr. Andrew Jones

Cats are wonderful companions, but when they start to urinate in the wrong places, such as in your carpet or on your couch, then your companion becomes not so wonderful. In this article I will show you the top reasons why cats urinate inappropriately, the top ways to solve this, plus my most effective at home remedy to eliminate the odor. You’ll find out how to prevent this from happening again, keeping your home free from the unpleasant odor of cat urine.

Cats choose to urinate outside their litter box for a variety of reasons. Some cats will urinate due to a medical condition called feline lower urinary tract disease (FLUTD); in this condition there is pain and inflammation. Kidney disease can cause increased drinking and urination, while diabetes can lead to increased drinking and bladder infections. Some cats have issues with the litter box, as it may be the wrong type of litter, or are located in a place with too much traffic. In other situations, cats will urinate due to behavior; such as the stress of being inside, anxiety with another cat, or just because an unfamiliar new ‘object’ is present.

Litter box problems are best treated by changing litters to one your cats prefers ( such as clumping clay litter), placing them in more private areas in your home, and by having more litter boxes available. The litter must be cleaned regularly, as cats will be averse to using it due to smell, and not being fresh.

Medical conditions require a diagnosis at your veterinarian starting with an analysis of the urine. Kidney failure and diabetes require specific diets, medication based on test results, and in the case of diabetes, insulin can be needed. FLUTD, or bladder inflammation can respond to conventional and alternative treatments. These include: canned food increasing moisture content, supplements to decrease inflammation, such as Glucosamine, and/or anti-anxiety conventional medication such as amitriptyline. The cat glucosamine dose is 100mg per 10lbs of body weight daily.

Cat behavior urination requires you to decrease the stress causing your cat to urinate in the wrong places. Behavioral urination occurs more often in un-neutered/ unsprayed cats; if this is the case with your cat then have them spayed or neutered. Top holistic remedies to decrease anxiety in your cat include the pheromone called Feliway; it is available as a spray or plug in diffuser. Bach Rescue Remedy may make your anxious cat feel calmer and more secure. Place 1 drop twice daily in your cat’s mouth. Try this for 3-4 weeks. Valerian may decrease anxiety in your cat, but it must be given for 2 weeks. The dose is 50 mg per lb of body weight of the dried herb or 1 drop per lb of body weight twice daily of the extract.

Removing the smell of cat urine is key to preventing this from happening again. Cats tend to go back to the same area that they have urinated on in the past. There are a number of commercial urine odor removal products, but I have found a particular home recipe very effective. If the urine is fresh, soak up as much as possible with a cloth or paper towel. Mix up this recipe for odor neutralizer (may lighten fabric so test a spot first) 1 cup hydrogen peroxide ( 3%), 1 tsp baking soda, 1 quick squirt liquid dish soap. Mix well and completely saturate on carpet/fabric that has been urinated on, and let air dry. Some people find mixing in a spray bottle and spraying it on is easier. Wait 24-48 hours then vacuum your carpet/couch, or wash your peed on shirt.

You can stop your cat from urinating in the wrong places in your house if you follow my above suggestions, a successfully remove the foul odor. If your cat is drinking more than normal, or urinating frequently with blood, then have a veterinarian determine the cause. If feline urinary tract disease is found, follow the basic principles of increasing fluid in your cats diet with canned food, decrease inflammation with supplements such as glucosamine, and decrease stress in your cat with remedies such as the natural pheromone, Feliway. Use my advised home recipe to remove the smell of cat urine, and if you follow all of the steps, this may never happen again.

Dr Andrew J

P.S. My Supplement, Dr Jones’ Ultimate Feline Health Formula contains glucosamine and chondroitin, which may help in FLUTD (feline lower urinary tract disease)- it has helped my own cat with repeated urinary inflammation. You can get a trial for 50% OFF here:

Ultimate Feline Health


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Topics: Cat Care, Cat Health, Pet Care, Pet health | 18 Comments »

18 Responses to “Cat Urine Odor: Top Ways To Stop It Fast And Remove the Smell”

  1. Avatar Diane Says:
    November 25th, 2011 at 5:49 am

    Very helpful article. Thank you. Also, I was glad to hear that you are writing a book on the whole thing that happened with the Veterinarian college to expose what I really believe to be oppressive micro management of your business practices. This involved how you marketed your business and what you knew to be true in regards to the dangers of conventional treatment and drugs – NOT incompetence of care to your patients. It’s absurd and I’m glad you are writing a book about it and I hope you find the right forum to promote it so that it will get LOTS of exposure and you can get the right kind of help to resolve it so that you are practicing once again. God Bless.

  2. Avatar Holly Says:
    November 25th, 2011 at 6:04 am

    The enzyme method such as Nature’s Miracle (I have no connection to them, alas) is just great. You just spray to soak, or pour it right on, and the smell is gone. Amazing.

  3. Avatar Bert Says:
    November 25th, 2011 at 6:05 am

    I had this problem with my old cat Pumpkin found out she was hyperthyroid. She had lost weight and was eating and drinking a lot and I guess she was having a hard time making it to the basement then the other cat and dog starred going in the same spot what a mess. Every once in a while they still go there even though I’ve cleaned it with a product for cat urine several times. I think the only way to completely stop it now I’ll have to replace the carpet in that room.

  4. Avatar Gale Says:
    November 25th, 2011 at 7:39 am

    I tried that when I was trying to rehab a male cat that refused all litter and I tried to toilet train him. Like the litters, he used the toilet for 3 days and then stopped and started doing it on furniture everywhere; he is a happy barn cat now.

    But to get off the smells from everything, and added to the wash when I was washing cushion covers and linen, I used…… TADA!!! Apple cider vinegar.
    On the furniture, clean up as much as you can with paper towels, spray with apple cider vinegar, let set a minute and clean up. For the laundry, add half a cup to the laundry soap and nothing else or it won’t work.

    Apple cider vinegar works like magic, and will also take urine stains out of mattresses… I have a female who likes to show me she is boss by peeing on the bed… she’s not allowed in the bedroom now.

    It’s inexpensive, doesn’t smell bad, and is easy to use and is very effective.

    Works on dog urine too.

  5. Avatar m.r.munidasa Says:
    November 25th, 2011 at 7:58 am

    wonderful advise.this saves my cats as well as our environment. thank you Dr. Jones

  6. Avatar Joni Says:
    November 25th, 2011 at 8:54 am

    You are not the Incompetent pne, the Veterinarian College is. Thank you for your honesty and for coming forward with the truth and following your need to do the right thing. We need more Veteranarians like you!!!! Thank you also for the artical on removing Cat Urine. I learned a long time ago about Baking Soda and Vinegar for removing cat odor and I am glad to see there is another way to get rid of the odor. I appreciate all the information you share with us. Joni Wykes

  7. Avatar malaika rodrigues Says:
    November 25th, 2011 at 8:55 am

    a very handy tip!thanks

  8. Avatar beth Says:
    November 25th, 2011 at 9:18 am

    Great article. I found the dried hydrogen peroxide powder like Oxyclean or Oxygen works really great. Buy it as a white dry powder. Mix with cold water and soak urine area. Don’t use any soap, hot water or clorax as that can kill the enzymes so then it may not work. Keep adding some oxyclean and cold water to the urine area for several days, if on carpet, just put a white towel or rag over it so people don’t soil the wet carpet. Then let air dry, and if any white powder residue, just vacumn up. I find this works great on old or fresh cat urine, and can’t believe I could lay on the freshly dried carpet and absolutely no urine scent sniffing with my nose on the carpet. Amazed.

    Also, we have also been told spraying white vinegar is another way to get rid of urine smell. Haven’t tried that, but many say that works too.

  9. Avatar barb derick Says:
    November 26th, 2011 at 6:00 am

    Dr. Jones have you considered going to go public at cbc / fifth estate or W5 to expose this unjust treatment on your practice I think it is has to be exposed

  10. Avatar Bev Says:
    November 26th, 2011 at 8:28 am

    Vinegar works great, however the cat can still
    smell it and of course she will use the same spot
    I had some kittens and put down paper. Easier
    clean up! I still need to work on the smell, from
    the cat’s point of view. It is fine for me.

  11. Avatar Sandy Alexander Says:
    November 27th, 2011 at 5:46 am

    MR Whiskers my elderly 20# Cat had uncontroled urination for several days before he passed away. His bed was wet 2 or 3 times daily. Exchanged the wet bed for dry bed and washed the wet bedding as follows. In the washer, NO soap, instead washed bedding with Arm and Hammer Baking Soda, one half cup, in the washer with warm water. Then washed again, in the washer the bedding a second time with NO soap, instead used only White Vinegar, 1 cup and warm water. This illiminated the smell. Our new kitty is using the same bedding and has never soiled the bedding which indicated there is no residue odor. Note: to keep the pillow filling and the foam form from getting soiled i wrapped each in a large plastic 50 gal trash bag. Then placed a terry towel between the bed cover and plastic. I washed the towels with the cover and changed the plastic daily. Yes, it sounds like a lot of work but Mr. Whiskers comfort was worh the efforts. I had hopes he would rally and recover. He was an amazing cat and companon to my 3 Jack Russel Terriers, We miss him.

  12. Avatar Denise Schultz Says:
    November 27th, 2011 at 3:13 pm

    Glad for the new options and understanding on cat urine causes and solutions. I’ve also seen cats with painful urination from crystals or infections who urinate Less and drink less because they associate the pain with drinking. So less urine has sometimes been a clue too.
    My formula is 2 cups plain white vinegar, 2 cups water, and 2 tablespoons plain white ammonia (not scented, not sudsy). This works in a spray bottle, or add one cup per wash load. Has worked for many clients, including to save a mattress saturated by a hormonal kitten (just pre-spay, and peewwww!) and even for saturated ‘repeat areas’ on sheetrock walls. Also I will try your H2O2 formula to see if it is better, always glad to improve.
    Thanks for staying in touch with us, while working to get the truth out with your book. We need more vets like you (not fewer!), who empower the client to help the animal directly. The gatekeeper mentality in veterinary medicine does not put the animals first. What you are doing is really important for the animals, and I really appreciate you are holding your head up in such a painful and difficult situation.

  13. Avatar Karen Says:
    November 28th, 2011 at 12:07 pm

    Use OdaBan. It is the most effective thing I’ve ever come across. None of the other enzyme solutions worked for me, when my Westie used the area rug as a pee-spot, repeatedly. A friend who’d had cat urine issues recommended OdaBan, and it sure is nice not to have that pet urine odor.

  14. Avatar Karen T Says:
    November 30th, 2011 at 2:40 pm

    There’s also a great litter called Cat Attract that works miracles, I swear. My cat didn’t use the little box for years. I was just about to make her an outdoor cat when I found it online. I had to work with her a little bit to show her the box of the new litter and within a week she was using the box full time.

  15. Avatar Margaret Churchill Says:
    December 21st, 2011 at 2:05 pm

    I’m anxiously going to try your receipe for this Dr. Jones! I use “Nature’s Miracle” and absolutely swear by it for eliminating cat smell and pee. It’s holistic as well …but can be costly if you have 5 cats! So, anything ‘home grown’ is worth a shot!
    Thanks for sharing!

  16. Avatar Hubinette Says:
    August 30th, 2013 at 5:36 am

    Nothing works to stop the sptaying, I’ve heard of something in France, which sprays a scent, undetectable to humans, when the cat nears its location. To clean up the smell, I was told by friends in France, and England, to use vodka, which does work, don’t use any bleach at all.

  17. Avatar Michele Says:
    March 11th, 2014 at 7:50 am

    Will this work for dog urine too? I adopted 2 15 year old chihuahuas and they were not potty trained.

  18. Avatar rochelle Says:
    November 30th, 2015 at 3:42 pm

    my cat goes pee in his box but its so trong going in my bedroom how can I ge the small out


Dr. Andrew Jones, DVM