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Home > Cats > Why Does My Cat Pee on My Couch: 8 Causes & How to Stop It

Why Does My Cat Pee on My Couch: 8 Causes & How to Stop It

a Mekong Bobtail cat with a necklace sitting on an elegant couch

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Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Paola Cuevas

Veterinarian, MVZ

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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The litter box you put down for your cat serves as a feline restroom. It’s your cat’s very own place to do his business. Of course, it’s natural to find cat urine in the litter box but not on your couch where you sit and relax.

If your cat is peeing on your couch, he’s not doing it to be naughty or to seek revenge. Therefore, you shouldn’t punish your little buddy. Your cat is peeing on your couch to let you know that there’s some kind of issue that needs attention.

We’ve put together the most common causes of cats peeing on couches so you can figure it out and alleviate the issue.


The 8 Reasons Why Your Cat Pees on Your Couch

1. Your Cat Has a Medical Problem

Many medical issues can cause a cat to pee outside the litter box. Maybe your cat has a health problem you’re not aware of that’s interfering with his normal urination. This could be anything from urinary tract disease to issues with his kidneys or even diabetes.

How to Remedy the Behavior

Because there are many possible medical causes for cats peeing in inappropriate places, you should speak to your vet. Your vet will likely have you bring your kitty in for an exam and testing. He may also ask you to collect some of your cat’s pee for testing. If this is requested, get some non-absorbing cat litter so the urine is easier to collect.

2. Your Cat Has Issues With the Litter Box Itself

cat lying on the wooden floor beside litter box
Image By: Tanya Plotnikova, Shutterstock

It’s common for a cat to stop using the litter box if they’re not happy with it. Think about your litter box. Have you placed it in a private area your cat feels safe using? Maybe you don’t clean the box often enough, or perhaps it’s too small for your cat.

How to Remedy the Behavior

If you’re guilty of not cleaning the box regularly, step up your game and do it more often. If it’s a size issue, buy a bigger box and if the box isn’t in a quiet, safe place, move it.

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3. You’re Using Litter Your Cat Doesn’t Like

Just because you like a particular type of cat litter doesn’t mean your cat does. Maybe your cat doesn’t like the feel of the litter when he steps inside the litter box.

How to Remedy the Behavior

If you adopted your cat recently, check with the previous owner to see what type of litter they used. If yours doesn’t match, make the switch to see if that stops your cat from peeing on your couch. If you can’t figure out what type of litter to get, set up a few litter boxes with various types of litter to see which type your pet prefers.

4. Your Cat Is Under Stress

stressed white cat on the floor
Image By: Hunt Han, Unsplash

A cat that’s feeling stressed may pee on a couch or some other inappropriate place. Lots of things can stress out a cat as these animals are creatures of habit and prefer that everything stays the same. Have you recently moved into a new home? Maybe you’ve welcomed a new baby into the family that’s stressing out your cat.

How to Remedy the Behavior

If you know what is causing your cat to feel stressed, try to remedy the problem. If it’s a new baby that your cat may be upset about, try to limit the time your cat spends around the baby. If It’s a recent move that’s triggering the stress, only time will help calm your cat down. Once he gets used to his new surroundings, he should calm down and settle in.

5. Your Cat Feels Safer Urinating in a High Place

If your cat doesn’t feel safe using his litter box that’s on the floor, he may head straight to the couch to pee. When he’s up and off the floor, your cat can quickly spot any potential threats so he can make a fast escape. This could be the reason why your cat is peeing on the couch.

Maybe there’s another pet in your home that’s messing with your cat, like a pesky dog or even another cat. Perhaps there’s a toddler running around your home your cat feels threatened by.

How to Remedy the Behavior

If you think you need to raise your litter box up and off the floor, put it on a table or another elevated place that makes your cat feel safer.

6.  He Doesn’t Want to Share a Litter Box

cat litter box cleaning
Image By: New Africa, Shutterstock

If you have multiple cats living in your home, there may be a dispute going on between your felines. Your cat may be peeing on the couch because he doesn’t want to share the litter box with another cat he doesn’t like.

How to Remedy the Behavior

If you think this could be the cause of your cat doing his business on your couch, get more litter boxes. If you have two cats, set up two litter boxes, if you have three cats, set up three, and so forth. Just be sure to leave plenty of space between the litter boxes and clean them regularly.

7. Your Cat May Have Separation Anxiety

If you have a close bond with your cat, he may be peeing on the couch when you’re not home because he’s upset that you’re not around. Just like kids, cats can get separation anxiety when their favorite person is away for an extended period. A cat with separation anxiety may meow all the time while wandering around and pee and poop in inappropriate places.

How to Remedy the Behavior

If you think separation anxiety is why your cat is peeing on the couch, ask a neighbor or friend to stop by daily to give your cat some company. You can also place things with your scent down on the floor, like articles of clothing or towels, so your cat doesn’t feel so alone.

8. Your Cat Is Being Territorial

Many cats squat and spray urine to mark their territory. This could be why your cat is peeing on your couch and especially if you’ve recently introduced a new pet into your home. This behavior is also common among unspayed and unneutered cats. Unfixed cats often spray urine to let other cats know they’re ready to mate.

How to Remedy the Behavior

If you have a new pet your cat is reacting to, be patient. It’s likely the inappropriate peeing will stop. If you haven’t spayed or neutered your cat, get it done as soon as possible so your cat stops peeing around the house to attract a mate.


divider-cat Conclusion

Of course, it’s problematic if your cat is peeing on your couch. But instead of getting mad, be proactive and find out why your beloved kitty cat is peeing outside his litter box. Once you’ve identified the cause of your cat peeing on the couch, you can work on alleviating the problem so he does his business in the right place.

Hopefully, it’s not a big problem like a serious health issue but rather something simple like changing the type of litter you’re using.

Featured Image Credit: fotoliza, Shutterstock

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