Q. We have just moved house and our cats keep urinating on the carpet – something they have not done before. What can we do?
A. This is not an unusual scenario at all, especially if the previous owners had pets of their own, which will have left their scent around your new home.
Firstly make sure you clean the area well with a detergent that does not contain ammonia and mask the smell with an anti-odour spray. Your vet can recommend suitable products.
Cats like to be reassured with their own scent markings as they wander through their home, so you will benefit from Feliway, an artificial abstract of the facial pheromone cats release naturally, and rub onto furniture and other prominent points around the home. It is available as a spray, or as a plug-in (like the air fresheners). This releases a calming and comforting odour that will reassure your cats.
Over time your cats will deposit their own pheromones around the house and the problem should resolve, but the Feliway will bring you more immediate effects.
If the problem persists, consult your vet.