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Pet Health, Interesting Facts, and Trivia
Cat Urine Marking

cat urine marking


There are actually two problems:

  • Marking and
  • Scratching

Cats mark because they're excited - either positively or negatively - for a variety of reasons.

  • To define their territory
  • To demonstrate dominance to other cats
  • Reaction to new pet or family member
  • Problems with a member of the household
  • Moving or remodeling the house
  • Visitors to the home
  • To initiate sexual activity

What are Pheromones?

Pheromones are natural chemicals secreted at various locations on the animal's body that communicate with other members of a species to affect their behavior. They're the key to feline marking and scratching behavior.

Where is marking found?

Marking spots are characteristically found on walls, corners, furniture, and other prominent objects in the house, approximately 8 inches above the ground or floor - where it can be easily perceived by other cats.

In marking, the cat follows a prescribed behavior pattern. He or she chooses a spot - kneads the ground/floor with increasing excitement - backs up to the target - and with the tail held vertically, sprays a horizontal jet of urine.

BOTH MALE AND FEMALE CATS MARK - including a percentage of spayed and neutered animals.


Scratching is largely territorial behavior. Like urine marking, it's found primarily on vertical surfaces. It leaves both visible and pheromonal evidence of the cat's presence as a warning to other cats.

See Feliway Spray for an end to marking and scratching.