Why is cat urine so stinky?
In the wild, it makes perfect sense for cat pee to have a very strong odor. Both male and female cats mark their territory by spraying urine on tree trunks and other vertical surfaces. So, the stronger the scent and the longer it lingers, the better. Compared to dog urine, cat urine is much more concentrated and smellier. That’s because your beloved feline’s ancestors lived in the desert where it’s better not to waste any water in your… well… waste.
How to get rid of it?
Cat pee stains and the related odor are super tricky to get rid of. Below you can find some do’s and don’ts.
Clean up as quickly as possible
You might have noticed that the smell of cat pee gets worse over time. That is because the foul odor is mainly caused by bacteria breaking down urea, which takes some time to happen. In addition, urine becomes more concentrated as it dries up, adding to the stench. Another reason why you want to clean up cat pee as quickly as possible is that, once the cat pee has evaporated, it will be very hard to find where exactly you need to clean.
Try vinegar and baking soda
If you already scanned the internet for cleaning solutions, you will probably have come across a combination of vinegar, water, and baking soda. We tried this one ourselves, and to be honest, it’s not our favorite. If you use this cleaning solution in a small room such as a bedroom or your car, we can guarantee you the vinegar smell will be noticeable for weeks. And while the cat pee stench will become less strong, it is still there months later.
In our opinion, enzymatic cleaners are the way to go. They may not be 100% foolproof, but at least you won’t be left with an entire room smelling like a jar of pickles. Most enzymatic cleaners come in spray bottles, but if you plan on using them on fabric, you might want to douse the pee stain and let it sit for a while. Make sure to always test on a small stretch first before treating larger areas. After 10-15 minutes, you can blot the stain with a cloth or paper towel and let the rest dry naturally. Don’t use a blow dryer as heat can set the stain.
Don’t use ammonia-based cleaners
While breaking down the urea in your cat’s urine, bacteria release ammonia. So, if you clean up cat pee using a cleaner that contains ammonia, the smell of cat pee will linger, which will in turn encourage your cat to urinate in the same spot again. After all, when a cat detects the smell of pee, they will think that this is the spot where they are supposed to go.