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Why is my neutered cat spraying

Why is a neutered cat spraying around the house

Any time a cat is urinating in any form outside of the litter box, you should see your veterinarian as there is the definite possibility that a medical problem is present.  Your doctor will ask about your cat’s elimination patterns.  Does he ever go outside?  Does he usually use the litter box?  Is it only urine you are seeing or does he ever poop outside the litter box?  Have there been any other changes in his behaviour recently?  Are there any changes in the household that may be stressing him?  For example, a simple change in placement of furniture may cause behavioural changes if a cat can now jump on the couch to see out the window and visualize other cats or prey animals such as birds or mice in the yard.

You also need to let your veterinarian know if your cat is truly spraying.  Spraying generally refers to a short stream of urine “sprayed” against a vertical surface such as a door jam.  If the cat is urinating onto a horizontal surface such as a floor, in a laundry basket, or in the bathtub, there is a strong likelihood that there is a medical problem such as kidney or bladder infection or stones.  Even so-called behavioural problems may have a medical cause.  We see cats with hyperthyroidism (a common condition in mature cats, the thyroid gland secretes too much hormone and causes an increase in metabolism), hypertension (high blood pressure), or heart disease.

Your doctor will want to find out when the problem started and ask you the questions (and more!) outlined above.  A complete examination may reveal abnormalities in the size of the kidneys or shape of the bladder to name a few things veterinarians look for during the physical.  Urine and blood tests are required to evaluate a baseline of health.  Depending on these results, x-rays, ultrasounds, and other diagnostics may be performed to fully assess your cat’s condition.

Inappropriate urination is one of the main causes of euthanasia in a pet who otherwise is healthy or has a treatable illness.  Pet parents often get to the point where they simply can’t stand the mess or the smell and make decisions before a veterinarian can step in and help the situation.  An 11 year-old cat may still have many years of happy life in front of him where there are therapeutic options available for his condition.

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