Advice & Tips
how to stop cat peeing in house

How to Stop a Cat From Peeing in the House - Waggel Tips

Written by Steph McCulloch


Without correcting the problem at hand, you could be looking at an undiagnosed behavioural or medical issue so it’s best to get clued up and know exactly what’s going on with your kitty.
A cat being praised


Urinating around the house, and not in a litter tray, is one of the most commonly reported issues by cat owners around the world.

Statistically speaking, peeing in the house is one of the most common reasons why cats are surrendered to shelters. Though it can feel very frustrating stepping into a rogue puddle, peeing in the house is an issue that can be corrected with the right help.

Without correcting the problem at hand, you could be looking at an undiagnosed behavioural or medical issue so it’s best to get clued up and know exactly what’s going on with your kitty.

Fortunately, we’ve compiled our top tips into a guide to help you discover how to stop your cat from peeing in the house.

a cat next to a small litter tray

Medical causes of inappropriate urination

Urinary tract infections can lead to inappropriate urination around your lovely home. This includes things such as bacterial infection, inflammatory diseases, and bladder stones.

Liver and kidney disease can cause cats to feel dehydrated. This means they will drink a lot and have a strong urge to pee whenever and wherever they are, often missing the litter tray or not making it in time.

Usually, if a cat has urinated on their litter just once, they won’t use it again as it is soiled and unfit for purpose. This means they’re far more likely to find other places around your house to use as their toilet such as your floor.

Inappropriate peeing in the house can also be caused by age-related matters such as diabetes. As cats get older, their sensory functions and mobility slow down which can affect their joints and nerves.

Ultimately, this can lead to discomfort, stiffness, and confusion meaning they may feel unsure of where to go or have trouble getting there.

If your cat is having issues when urinating, a trip to the vet can help to clear up any problems and help to find a diagnosis. Luckily, all Waggel customers get access to 24/7 online vet care with Joii, a leading vet service dedicated to helping pet owners seek immediate veterinary care without wait lists and worry.

a cat sniffing a litter box

Litter box issues

Cats can be very particular about where they go to the toilet. Sometimes there isn’t a medical explanation and they just don’t have the right kind of litter box for their needs. This leads them to pee around the house in spots they find more comfortable.

To avoid this from happening, or from continuing to happen, we recommend examining your cat’s litter box with a beady eye.

This means ensuring it’s in the right location, is at a high standard of cleanliness, and the type of litter used is correct. If your cat is spooked by their litter box, you’re far more likely to find random puddles around your house.

One reason for this could be that the cat's food bowl is placed too close to its litter tray, which can cause inappropriate elimination. If you find cat urine a distance away from their litter tray and food bowl, then this could be a simple behavioural issue and not due to medical reasons.

Things that can help you to find the right litter box for your cat include:

  • Ensuring the size is correct - a litter box should be large enough for your cat to fit inside with extra space to dig around and relax 

  • Getting the height right - depending on your cat’s personality they may prefer tall walls or a roof to help them gain privacy, this also helps to avoid a mess if your cat sprays when they pee or kicks around a lot 

  • Deciding if you want a self-cleaning litter box or not - whilst these guys can help you to save time cleaning they can be pretty costly and can spook cats who may be nervous or skittish. 

  • To clump or not to clump? Finding the right litter can feel like something of a mission. With so many on the market, it can be a bit confusing. As a typical rule of thumb, most cats prefer unscented, fine particle litter that doesn’t clump.

  • At Waggel, our cats love Natusan. Natusan is a biodegradable litter made from 100% natural materials. Waggel members can currently save £12.99 with a special discount code making a 10L bag just £5.

  • Buying one more litter box. Buy more than the number of cats you have to help them to feel extra comfortable in your home and is a common rule used by cat owners.  

It's also advised to keep a clean litter box as cats are very clean animals and this could prevent them from using it. A soiled litter box could need scooping twice a day depending on your cat's use. The urine smell could also be an issue which could put them off.

Scented litters are something which could also affect your feline friends from using their litter box, so try to replace it with a non-scented litter and see if this works.

a cat looking at a cloth being used to wipe up liquid

Stress and anxiety

Stress and anxiety can also be potential causes of inappropriate urination. Any slight change in a cat’s mood can cause them to change their pee habits dramatically.

Cats also pee out of stress in a way to mark their territory. If something has recently changed in their routine such as a new addition to the family or you’ve relocated to a new home you may notice a lot of marking on walls and floors.

If you can’t think of any huge changes in your cat’s life, it could just be that they’re unhappy with their tray as discussed above! In cases like this, it’s best to sit down and think about how you could make your cat’s litter box better for them. After all, how would you like to pee in a tiny toilet?

a cat sniffing a mop

Marking behaviour

Marking is a territorial form of behaviour used by cats and dogs alike in a way to assert dominance. Marking is a way for cats to determine authority and claim their things through scent, though when pee is involved, it can become an issue - and a smelly one at that.

Though cats can mark by rubbing and scratching things, they often spray pee when they’re stressed and feel under threat so it’s important to consider what could be a threat in the environment you share together and work on removing it to make your cat feel calmer and in control.

Marking is also a behaviour seen in cats who’ve not been spayed or neutered so remedying this also be a possibility and can often help to eliminate the issue entirely. It’s recommended cats be neutered at around four to five months old to avoid unwanted pregnancies.

The difference between marking and peeing however, is that the cat will pee on horizontal surfaces, but will mostly mark their territory on vertical surfaces.

a ginger cat next to a litter box

Cleaning with specific compounds

One way to combat peeing in the house is to thoroughly clean the area where your cat has been going to the toilet by using a specific enzymatic or biological cleaning solution.

These clever cleaners work by breaking down and neutralising the proteins found in urine and eliminating the scent meaning your cat is less likely to pee in the same area again.

As always, follow the instructions on these types of cleaners carefully and wear protective gloves when handling the solution. You may find that you have to repeat this process several times if your cat has been making use of your walls and furniture for quite some time.

Don’t forget to keep all cleaning products away from your cat and clean only when your cat isn’t in the room to avoid any risk or damage to their health.


We know it can be annoying when your cat pees on your favourite shoes, but peeing around the house can be a sign that your cat isn’t feeling like their best feline self.

Whilst it could be an easily resolved behavioural issue, peeing around the house could be a sign of a blocked urinary tract which is very serious and requires immediate veterinary care.

Urinary blockages are more common in male cats and are classified as an emergency hospital situation so it’s best to take precautions and get your cat seen to as soon as you notice a change.

If you’ve noticed a behavioural issue in your cat and they’re avoiding their litter box - changing their litter box could help to resolve the problem. This means opting for a larger model with taller sides and a different kind of non-clumping litter.

However, it’s always best to seek a professional veterinary opinion to eliminate a severe medical issue. We recommend seeking the help of a vet or behaviourist through the Joii app, exclusively offered to Waggel members.

cat pheromone diffuser product image

Bonus tip: consider using a cat pheromone diffuser

Whilst you may have recognised that your cat seems stressed, it can be difficult to know what to do to help them feel better. Enter pheromone diffusers.

These nifty devices contain naturally calming cat pheromones to help your cat feel like their best selves. They’re designed to eliminate signs of stress including peeing in the house and spraying.

All you need to do is plug them in and let the magic happen!

Before purchasing a plug-in, we recommend seeking advice from your vet about the use of pheromone diffusers as a solution for inappropriate urination.

We’ve also written this article to help you understand all about pheromone plug-ins and how they can help your kitty feel relaxed and refreshed.

Waggel Pet Insurance

Need more help? You're in luck if you're a Waggel Pet Insurance member. Along with our excellent coverage, we offer access to a 24/7 online vet to answer all your sticky questions, especially if you need grooming assistance.

Not a member? Why not get a quote now and cover your furry friend for a range of illnesses, all while enjoying our amazing perks and rewards.

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