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How to Stop a Cat From Peeing on the Carpet

Marice Johnson

By Marice Johnson

orange cat next to wet spot pee on carpet

Cat pee has a terrible odor and often the smell lingers long after you’ve done all your cleaning.

Luckily, most cats are easily litter-trained, and they can learn how to pee and poop in their litter boxes. Thankfully, it is in their nature to want to have a clean “deposit” area!

However, sometimes there are accidents and you find yourself cleaning cat pee on the carpet. You are often left wondering why this happened, especially if your cat is trained to go outside or in their litter box.

There are a couple of things that can affect this behavior – from physical to emotional.

Why Do Cats Pee on the Carpet?

There are many reasons why cats pee on the carpet, including medical, physical, and emotional reasons. Here some things to consider when trying to figure out what’s happening with your beloved cats.

  • 1. Difficulty in peeing can cause your cats to try and relieve themselves in certain areas of your home, such as your carpet. If you see your cat having a difficult time peeing in the litter box or showing signs of distress such as meowing loudly or crying, then they might have some bladder stones, a blockage in their urinary tract, or a urinary tract infection. Watch them carefully and if they show any signs of difficulty, then take your cat to the veterinarian as soon as possible to have them checked.
  • 2. Another thing to watch out for when your cat decides to pee on the carpet or anywhere else rather than the litter box is Feline Interstitial Cystitis. This is the inflammation of the bladder and can cause the cat to pee right then and there, making it impossible for them to reach the litter box in time.
  •  3. If you have just moved to a new home or you just got a new pet or even a new roommate, then your cat might feel threatened by them. This gives them the need to claim their territory, making them “mark” other areas of the home.
  • 4. When your cat is stressedthey tend to poop and pee in certain areas that they do not usually poop or pee in before.
  • 5. Another reason for your cat refusing to use your litter box is because it is too dirty and has not been cleaned out in days. Make sure that the litter box is cleaned at least twice a day and that the litter is replaced with a fresh new batch often. Also, put the litter box in a place where there is a lot of space for your cat to move around. Keep it in a well-lit area and avoid moving it from one room to another often, as cats love following their own routines.
Cute grey cat on carpet near wet spot pee
Image credit: New Africa, Shutterstock

How do I Stop a Cat from Peeing on the Carpet?

First, work through the above reasons that they are peeing. Be sure to talk to your Vet about any and all possible health issues. Once all the other reasons are “solved”, then the next step is to retrain your cat, so that they don’t think the carpet is an OK place to relieve themselves. This is done by removing all signs of the carpet previously being a litter box!

The best way to do that is to remove the odors.

Make sure that you remove the smell of the cat pee on the carpet. If you do not do this, your cat will just keep on coming back in the same spot, since they will smell their own urine and think that it is okay for them to relieve themselves there again.

Use a disinfectant and odor neutralizer to get the smell out of the carpet. Avoid products that have ammonia in them, as this usually smells like a cat’s urine. Choose something that has a citrusy smell – some cats do not like this and will stay away from the area.

You can also make your own disinfectant at home. Try a mix of 1/8 white vinegar, 7/8 water, and a couple of drops of liquid dish detergent. Clean the carpet with it to remove the odor of the cat’s urine.

Excited Cats also compared the 10 best cat urine removers. Click here to see the findings.

cleaning floor carpet with spray rubber gloves
Image credit: Syda Productions, Shutterstock

Happy Cats Don’t Have Pee Accidents

A cat with no problems will use its litter box. If your cat is not happy and is experiencing some stress or medical conditions, random peeing is a sign that they need your help. Do your research to make sure that you are doing your best to help your cat in this situation.

Never shout at them or punish them for what they have done, as they will never understand their mistake if you do this; it will only make them more stressed out.

Instead, you should approach this problem with patience and ease and understand that if your cat is showing new behaviors, chances are likely that something else is going poorly in their lives and that they need loving attention, not to be yelled at.

Have you had similar experiences? Let us know what worked for you in the comments below!

cat relaxing using litter box

The 6 Best Carpet Odor Eliminators for Cat Owners

Keep them nice with our favorite odor eliminator products featured below:

1. Hepper Advanced Bio-Enzyme Pet Stain & Odor Eliminator

hepper enzyme cleaner spray

If you're looking for an enzyme cleaner that does it all, we highly recommend the Hepper Advanced Bio-Enzyme Pet Stain & Odor Eliminator Spray. Yes, it’s our product, but we love it so much, we have to share! Not only does it permanently remove the very worst smells and stains (yes, everything you can imagine!), but we offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee! Click here to get yourself a bottle.

2. Citrus Magic Pet Solid Air

pure linen solid air freshener

Pet odors are no fun, keep your home spelling clean with Citrus Magic Pet Solid Air FreshenersThese are perfect for pet rooms and pet areas like cages and litter boxes!

3. ARM & HAMMER Plus OxiClean Dirt Fighters

arm and hammer pet fresh


ARM & HAMMER™ plus OxiClean™ Dirt Fighters uses the power of Baking Soda to neutralize even the toughest odors deep within carpets. It also helps vacuums lift up to 25% more dirt and leaves behind a pleasant fragrance for long-lasting freshness!

4. Nature’s Miracle Urine Destroyer

natures miracle cat urine destroyer


Do you want to prevent cats from marking and revisiting the same spot twice? Try Nature’s Miracle Urine Destroyer for cats, it is tough on strong cat urine and the yellow, sticky residue that comes along with it. It can be used on carpets, hard floors, furniture, fabrics, and more!

5. Nature’s Miracle 3 in 1 Odor Destroyer

natures miracle 3 in one odor destroyer


Nature’s Miracle 3 in 1 Odor Destroyer bio-enzymatic formula starts to break down and destroy organic odors on contact, while other pet odor eliminators simply mask the unpleasant odors. The 3 in 1 Odor Destroyer is ideal for eliminating odors caused by your pets on carpets, kennels, tile, and other hard surfaces!

6. Nature’s Miracle Just For Cats

Natures miracle just for cats orange oxy


Nature’s Miracle Just For Cats can eliminate existing stains and odors leaving behind orange scents. Safe for use around children and pets when used as directed.

Related Read: What Is the Best Type of Carpet for Cats That Scratch?

Featured image credit: Africa Studio, Shutterstock

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