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View Full Version : How does one get a stray cat from peeing on one's house?


Sycorax
01-10-2001, 08:49 PM
I know there've been a zillion threads on cat behavior and I've done a search, but find nothing on this particular problem: Visiting my soon-to-be-brother-in-law recently, he asked me what to do about a stray cat that pees on his house. He has an old Victorian house with long, low windows, and this stray cat comes around occasionally and pees below the window and front door. The pee seeps in and of course stinks up the place. Seems to me I've read where you can put down some common household substance that will repel the cat. He doesn't know anything about the cat, but I told him it's probably a male spraying to mark territory. Any suggestions for a non-harmful substance he can try?

capybara
01-10-2001, 09:08 PM
I've heard that you can pick up some coyote pee at some garden supplies (this is not a joke). Cats don't like that.

Green Bean
01-10-2001, 09:21 PM
ROFL from your thread title! Sounds like you are saying that you would like to acquire a stray cat and you were hoping that peeing on your house might attract one.

carnivorousplant
01-10-2001, 09:29 PM
Pepper will keep them off a car. They lick it when they clean their feet.
They also do not like citrus. I have never tried them, but their are repellants based on citrus.

elbows
01-10-2001, 09:56 PM
I was just talking to someone today about this, as it happens. And they swear by human hair.

This person was a hair dresser and says that people come by and ask for the hair from the floor for this very purpose.

Just sprinkle it over your beds, apparently they really, really don't like it.

Please keep in mind, I haven't tried this, I don't have this problem.

iamthewalrus(:3=
01-10-2001, 10:05 PM
A beebee gun always worked for me.

Zenster
01-10-2001, 10:07 PM
Big Dog.

carnivorousplant
01-10-2001, 10:49 PM
Originally posted by iamthewalrus(:3=
A beebee gun always worked for me.

Come try it at my house.

Jeep's Phoenix
01-11-2001, 08:48 PM
Originally posted by elbows
I was just talking to someone today about this, as it happens. And they swear by human hair.

This person was a hair dresser and says that people come by and ask for the hair from the floor for this very purpose.

Just sprinkle it over your beds, apparently they really, really don't like it.

Please keep in mind, I haven't tried this, I don't have this problem.



That works with deer, but I don't think it works for cats. On the other hand, I wonder if dog hair would work?

The BB gun would definitely work. Aim for the upper part of the cat's rear legs.

Can you approach the cat while it is in the act of defacing your property? If you can, a good spray of Lysol to the cat's rear end will send 'im running.

Girl Hermit
01-12-2001, 01:18 AM
Originally posted by Jeep's Phoenix

That works with deer, but I don't think it works for cats. On the other hand, I wonder if dog hair would work?

A dog groomer friend of mine has a few people come by the shop every week or so to grab a bag of dog hair to put in their flower beds. According to them it keeps the stray cats out of their gardens. I have no idea if it really works or not but they seem to think so. They also say the dirtier the dog hair the better as the clean dog hair just smells like shampoo and does not have that doggy smell needed to work right.

Carina42
01-12-2001, 09:00 AM
I have two dogs, and their smell doesn't seem to stop the occasional stray from piddling around my house. I have heard of the coyote-cougar pee thing working for deer, but not for cats.

The BB gun thing is not very humane, and probably won't work unless you kill the cat. A male marking it's territory will see this as an additional threat & may redouble the marking behaviour.

IMHO, the most socially conscious thing to do is trap the cat and get it spayed/neutered. Not only will it probably stop marking your house, (if it doesn't get scared away from your house completely); the cat won't be responsible for countless unwanted wild kittens.

You can get humane traps free from any Humane Society or the like. In Denver there is a non-profit animal hospital that does S/N + shots for $21.00, I imagine most cities have a similar place. I've done this with two cats at my current house.

carnivorousplant
01-12-2001, 09:07 AM
I agree with Carina42.
I was gonna do that, but the Tom moved on before I could trap him.

Egad
01-12-2001, 11:41 AM
A cat was doing that on my house once and my own cat went ballistic. He came home one day with a big chunk out of his head, limping and missing clumps of fur. I went outside and there was cat hair everywhere, and steam coming up from the melting snow in the warm sun. It looked like some sort of feline armageddon. Anyway the other cat never came back. My cat kicked his ass. So maybe you need another cat ;)

Waddle
01-12-2001, 12:06 PM
yeah u do need another cat. My cat makes sure the local strays keep as far from my house as possible. (a cat with a loy of fur keeps other cats off better because it's hair provides EXELENT armor, my cat can work other cats over pretty well without getting more than a few scratches.)

barstow
01-12-2001, 02:00 PM
Two things that have worked for me:

Short term - There are products at larger garden centers and pet stores that chase away cats safely. They contain ground bone meal. Often comes in a square wax container that looks like a quart of milk. Do not spread this in the wind, or it will get into your clothes.

Long term - Cats hate the smell of marigolds. So do I, so I plant them on the side of the house without windows.

Nukeman
01-12-2001, 02:34 PM
Im not sure about cats, but some people I used to know used to put a half full 2 litre bottle of water on their lawn and for some reason this seemed to stop dogs from shitting on their lawn. Mysterious eh? maybe it would work for cats.

Sauron
01-12-2001, 03:25 PM
Originally posted by Nukeman
Im not sure about cats, but some people I used to know used to put a half full 2 litre bottle of water on their lawn and for some reason this seemed to stop dogs from shitting on their lawn. Mysterious eh? maybe it would work for cats.

Not to be snotty, but I seem to recall Cecil dismissing this tactic pretty persuasively in a column several years ago. He said one dog even went so far as to carefully position itself to leave a deposit balanced on the edge of the water-filled container.

manhattan
01-12-2001, 06:11 PM
Good eye, Sauron!

Do jugs filled with water keep dogs off your lawn? (http://www.straightdope.com/classics/a3_070.html)

Ad Noctum
01-12-2001, 06:21 PM
The BB gun thing is not very humane, and probably won't work unless you kill the cat. A male marking it's territory will see this as an additional threat & may redouble the marking behaviour.


a BBgun...... not a Pellet gun...... prolly not even an AIR rifle, one of those Daisy Red-Rider type of BB guns work on Spring power only, and can not penetrate a tin can. hell, they can't even penetrate skin (I shot myself in the leg once..... don't ask). so there would be no lasting damage to the kitty, just a stinging Rear end.

coosa
01-12-2001, 09:25 PM
Citrus is probably the best answer. You can buy citrus spray, or use orange/lemon/grapefruit etc., peels. Most cats don't like the smell of citrus fruits - you might try grinding up orange peels or something in the blender and sprinkling around the house.

Some of the repellent sprays on the market will repel you also, and some of my cats seem to be attracted to the stinky stuff!

I don't know about the dog hair - I imagine it would depend on how the cat feels about dogs. Wouldn't even slow mine down - they think dogs are big, clumsy cats and tease them.

Is there any way to determine whether or not this is a stray cat, or belongs to someone in the neighborhood? If it is a stray, I would borrow, buy, or rent a humane trap, trap the cat, and take it to the local shelter.

If the cat belongs to a neighbor, I would contact the neighbor about the problem. Inform them that the cat is damaging the house and that they need to keep their cat confined in some way. Depending on the local laws, the owners might be liable for the property damage - you might check on that and use it as a lever to persuade the owners to act responsibly towards their pet. There might also be local ordinances against free-roaming pets of ANY kind, which would also require them to confine their cat or find another home for it.

Heck, even if the cat belongs to someone, I think I would seriously consider trapping it and taking it to the shelter - obviously, if the cat is roaming around spraying houses, the owners are not caring for it in a responsible manner. The cat should be confined indoors or have its outdoor access limited to a screened porch or other enclosure for its own safety. It might be better off at the shelter, even if it is eventually euthanized - beats hell out of being run over by a car and spending 6 hours dieing on the side of the road with his guts spread all over the pavement.:(

Besides the smell, cat urine (especially from a whole male) can actually damage the house - it will literally peel the paint off! I keep several whole males as stud cats, and I have seen some paints and varnishes bubble up and then peel away in their favorite 'marking' spots. And if the urine penetrates the wood, it will be nearly impossible to get rid of the odor - the wood will probably have to be replaced.

And here's a little extra tip that might help out until the problem is solved - Zep Manufacturing Company makes a product called Odorstroyer that contains live bacteria especially designed to digest and destroy urine, feces, and vomit stains and odors. I get mine from the vet clinic - not sure where else you can find it, but I would start with a pet store or vet clinic for this or a similar product. It works wonders, and will take care of that nasty odor left behind when the toilet plugs up and overflows, too. :)

Oh, and the BB gun - don't. Not only is it inhumane, if there is no local 'leash law' that prohibits free-roaming cats, you can be liable for all medical expenses arising from injuring the cat, and irregardless of any 'leash law' you may be subject to criminal charges for animal cruelty/abuse - in Alabama this has just become a felony, so it's not something to laugh off.

warmgun
01-12-2001, 09:42 PM
A friend of mine had this problem. He went to the local pet store and bought a can of (seriously) "NO". Worked like a charm.
But, geez, 6 or 7 pages on how to KILL marmots and then everyone gets thier panties in a wad about shooting a stray cat with a BB gun.You people have got to stop projecting human values onto your "pets".