How to stop cat spraying bushes. A helpful and useful guide.
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How to stop cat spraying bushes
One of the most undesirable behaviors in cats is spraying. However, like any other pet, we cannot ignore this behavior. This is because it is commonly a way of communication for your cat. For this reason, it is important to understand the factors that contribute to cat spraying. In this article, we are going to discuss these factors briefly as well as how to stop cat spraying bushes.
At this point, it is important to understand that it could go two ways. You are looking this up because your cat won’t stop spraying bushes or your neighbor’s stray cat won’t leave your yard. You do not have to worry because after reading this article you will be able to curb this behavior.
Male cats exhibit the behavior of urinating in shrubs for marking or mating purposes. An unneutered cat will definitely get to that time of the year when he is looking for a mate. To attract female cats, your male cat may spray in your bushes. This signifies that the household has a cat available for mating.
In addition, your cat may want to mark territories to keep other cats away. This usually happens after he has recognized other cats in his territory and has the urge to keep them away. As much as this is normal behavior amongst cats, you definitely do not want to ruin your bushes.
Outdoor cats are used to peeing outdoors. However, this does not mean that it is okay for him to spray your bushes. Usually, your cat will do this in an effort to get your attention. Giving him the attention he seeks when he does is only going to encourage the behavior. Therefore it is important that you identify the most appropriate way to address this issue.
How to stop your cat from spraying bushes in your garden
Deterring your cat from spraying your bushes might be a difficult place. This is because even though you keep an indoor cat, it is still easy for him to sneak out of the house to pee on the bushes. However, you have been working to improve your flower garden and you do not want to harm it. How do you stop your cat from this undesirable behavior?
• Neutering and spaying
As we have discovered above, one of the most common reasons for cat spraying bushes is its sexual behaviors. Unneutered cats become a nuisance when they want to mate. This is because not only will he spray your stuff with urine but also your bushes.
This behavior is quite common in male cats who will spray your yard as a way of communication. In other words, spraying the bushes is directed at interested female cats. It is a sign that your cat is ready and eager to mate and thus updating neighborhood cats.
In addition, male cats also tend to mark their territories. Your cat will spray your bush of flower garden to exhibit dominance in that household. This is meant to keep other cats away from your home, and usually happens after your cat has observed another one trespassing.
For these reasons, neutering or spaying your cat is a great step if you want him to quit spraying your bush. This is because he/she will not have the need to exhibit sexual behaviors or be interested in mating.
Neutering also reduces the hostility of your cat, which may bring out the need to mark his territories. It will make your cat more docile as well as manage the cat population.
• Provide enough and clean litter boxes
Dirty litter boxes are such a turn off to both you and your cat. Due to your cat’s strong sense of smell, he may avoid using the litter box because of several factors. For instance, if the litter boxes have not been scooped for days, your cat is definitely going to get another place to relieve himself.
The bushes may provide an option to the dirty litter boxes. In addition, the litter boxes should be placed strategically for your cat’s convenience. Consider placing the litter boxes in a low traffic area with minimum activity. This is because cats love to finish their problems in private and with less intrusion.
Also consider adding the litter boxes, especially in a multi-cat household. This will encourage all your cats to use the litter boxes since they are readily available. Lastly, it is important that you choose the correct type of litter for your cat.
Generally, cats prefer litter consisting of small, soft and loose particles. This is due to their tendency of covering up their waste after digging into the litter. It is also essential to consider using an odor-free litter that is able to absorb the pee rather than hold it.
• Manage stress and anxiety
Cats have their own ways in which they display anxiety and stress and money of the common behavior exhibited is cat spraying. This makes it very essential to always check on your cat’s emotional status whenever you observe them engaging in this behavior.
Stress can be caused by environmental factors, humans or even other cats. For instance, your cat may be spraying the bushes as a result of stress and anxiety. Some of the factors that may expose your cat to stress may include;
– Conflicts in a multi-cat home – cats may conflict with each other based on various factors. For instance, there might be stiff completion of resources in your household. These include food, water and litter boxes. Once your cat conflicts with another cat, probably a more dominant and bigger cat, he will be exposed to anxiety and stress.
– View of other cats – cats tend to be quite possessive with their environment as well as their owners. Once your cat observes another cat in your property, it might bring about anxiety.
– Change of routine – This is also a common cause of stress in cats. They find it quite difficult to adjust to changes and thus develop coping mechanisms. It could be a slight change like changing the feeding or playtime. In addition, changing your personal schedule is also possible to affect your cat. For instance, changing the time you leave for work or come back home will stress your cat.
– New family members – As mentioned above, cats love attention and dislike change. Therefore, whenever you introduce a new family member, you may notice changes in your cat’s behavior.
Now that we have explored the possible causes of stress in cats, how can you manage such to curb spraying bushes? Managing stress in cats should not be difficult once you identify the reason why he is doing so.
Here are some tips you may use to curb stress in your cat:
Allocate enough playtime – playing with your cat is probably the highlight of his day. In modern society, we cannot manage to spend every second with our cats. However, allocating enough time to play and engage in an activity together will offer him the attention he needs.
Stick to a schedule – cats find it difficult to accept changes. It is therefore important to make sure that you develop and stick to a daily routine. This involves feeding him at the same time every day, grooming and emptying the litter box.
Limit boredom – a bored cat is a stressed cat! This is because of the wildlife instincts that urge them to keep doing something. For instance, in the wild, cats would hunt and play together. However, this is not always possible especially if you keep one cat. Therefore, there is a need to keep your cat busy by providing toys or leaving your TV or music on. Not only will this help your cat relax but also engaged for a long period of time when you are away.
Block window view – once again, your cat may be stressing from viewing other cats in his territory. And since your cat may not immediately chase the other cat away, he may spray your bushes in efforts to mark their territories. The other cat is definitely going to understand the message sent by your cat.
Provide enough resources – This is especially important if you run a multi-cat household where there might be competition for resources. Like humans, every cat is different in its unique way whereby some are competitive while others may not be able to do so. This is why you should consider assigning feeding bowls as well as provide enough number of litter boxes and water.
Allow the newcomer to bond with your cat – as indicated above, some cats stress because you have a new person in your household. It is therefore important to introduce the two to each other and let them bond. Feeding and playtime is the best time to bond with a cat.
• Restrict or deter your cat from accessing the bush
This is probably the most effective way of stopping your cat from spraying your bush. For instance, if your cat is spraying on a specific bush, you may want to keep him away from the spot. Cats have a way of spraying the same spot over and over again. However, to be able to stop your cat from spraying on your bush, you should consider keeping him away from it.
You may use safe cat deterrents to keep your cat away or simply restrict your cat from accessing your yard or garden. This is going to stop your cat from spraying the bush, after all, he cannot access it.
To be able to restrict your cat, you should train him to keep off the yard. This can be achieved by providing a distraction once you observe him heading in the direction of your garden. You can use his favorite treat to get his attention or even a toy. In fact, toys are preferable to food in order to avoid overfeeding your cat and thus encouraging obesity.
Litter trained cats should not be difficult to control as long as you curb the habit appropriately. However, this calls for patience and resilience to pull off.
If your neighbor’s cat has become a nuisance by spraying your bushes, then you have a whole new problem to solve. Upon working on our gardens, we definitely do not want it messed up. Cat pee is definitely going to destroy your bushes and thus the need to do something about it.
It becomes even more difficult to control the cat since he is not yours. Then again, you do not want to cross a line with your neighbor, nor the cat. We are going to outline some of the most effective ways of stopping a cat from spraying bushes below:
• Talk to your neighbor
This should be the first step to make if your neighbor’s cat is spraying your bushes or flower beds. Before applying any other method, you should have a conversation with your neighbor peacefully. However, you should tread carefully as not all people may understand your woes.
You should be able to express your woes to your neighbor. If this goes well, your neighbor should be able to keep their cats away from your yard. You may also suggest the above-discussed methods to your neighbor in order to keep their cat off your bushes.
It is also important that this may not work with some people. In that case, you will have to develop other measures in which you can be able to keep your neighbor’s cat away.
• Use safe cat deterrents
There are several cat deterrents that you may use to keep off stray or neighborhood cats. You should, however, be careful as you do not want to hurt the kitty. These deterring methods may include:
Eucalyptus oil – in addition to all the other benefits of eucalyptus oil, it is also a great deterrent for cats. Its strong smell is sure going to keep cats away and leave your garden smelling better. Once you identify the specific bush the cat is spraying, you may apply this method. For effectiveness, mix eucalyptus oil with water and spray on the bushes. It is completely safe for your bush and quite effective in keeping these cats away.
Tea leaves – Not only is this a great way to recycle your tea bags but a great cat deterrent. Cats do not enjoy the smell of tea leaves, used or not. This makes it an effective way to deter cats from your bushes. Once you observe a cat peeing in your bush, you may consider sprinkling it with tea leaves.
Lemon Juice and cayenne pepper – Cats dislike the smell of cayenne pepper as well as that of lemon juice. However, you should be careful with cayenne pepper as it is not exactly good for cats. This is because your cat has a stronger sense of smell than we do. To avoid getting cayenne pepper in your face, you may mix the pepper with lemon juice and water before spraying in on the bush.
Make the scene unattractive – To be able to use this method, you must first understand that cats prefer soft surfaces. That is why he wants to curl up on the couch or your thighs. Therefore, it is unlikely that a cat will spray a bush located on a rough surface. Thus, placing pebbles instead of the soil will deter your cat from spraying on your bush. Pebbles are going to frustrate the cat and he will not be coming back to spray.
Sprinkler with motion sensor – This works well especially because you may not always be available to keep the cat away. It is harmless to cats because the only deterrent here is water. Alternatively, you may decide on getting water guns with motion sensors as well. This way, whenever the sprinkler or gun senses the motion of your cat, it fires water towards them. And since cats hate getting all wet, he is definitely going to stay off your property.
Ultrasounds – cats have a strong sense of hearing which makes it possible to use ultrasounds to keep them off our yards and lawns. The ultrasound device produces a sharp and annoying sound that only cats and other animals can hear. This way, you will keep cats off your property without having to exchange a word with your neighbor. However, you should be cautious with the sounds not to distract your neighbor’s cat while it is at its rightful home.
Lemon peels – This is another form of cat deterrent since cats do not like the smell of citrus. You may place the lemon peels at the foot of your bus, preferably all around. This way, the cat will be repelled by the pungent smell of lemon peels.
Approaching your neighbor to complain about their cat may actually result in disagreement. However, this does not limit you from keeping your garden clean and free of cat pee. Using the above methods, you will be able to deter any cat in your yard.
It is, however, important to understand that the goal is to stop a cat from spraying bushes and not to punish them. Whether it is your cat or not, you should not use any harmful products that could poison the cat. In addition, you should understand why your cat is spraying the bush in the first place. Once you eliminate the stimulant for the habit, you will have solved the problem halfway.
Be careful about how to deal with other people’s pets even if they are on your property. You should refrain from punishing the cat whatsoever. If you are training your cat to resist the urge to spray on your bushes, you will have to be patient and resilient about it.