or Connect
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Natural Living › The Mindful Home › Pets › Best way to wash out cat urine from clothes/bedding?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Best way to wash out cat urine from clothes/bedding?

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
My cat has Feline Urologic Syndrome, which we are trying to treat/get under control. In the meantime I have a BUNCH of stuff that reeks of pee.

What's good for getting the pee odor out? I would imagine baking soda would be good, since it has odor-eating properties, but I've never used it in the wash and don't know how much to put in or anything. Or any other suggestions?
post #2 of 9
White vinegar works like a charm. Also, Nature's Miracle works great for things that you can't throw into the wash, such as carpet.
post #3 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zamber View Post
White vinegar works like a charm. Also, Nature's Miracle works great for things that you can't throw into the wash, such as carpet.
Ditto...speaking from much experience.
post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 
Cool, thanks guys.

I have a MOUNTAIN of laundry to do. So I'll be getting extra white vinegar, and will check out this Nature's Miracle stuff too.

It's a tough situation for us. We love our cats but there is pee EVERYWHERE. We've gone to the vet 4 times, at the tune of approximately $150-200 per visit (including the meds, labs, etc.). We had to cancel a visit to visit my parents because we couldn't afford both the vet visits and the flight down. I am afraid this is going to be a lifelong thing. I don't mind the occasional accident much, it happens. But now it's like there is a new puddle of pee once or twice a DAY on a bed, carpet, the futon on the floor that DD plays on, the pile of yesterday's clothes we left on the floor before going to bed, etc.

We came up with a game plan to remove soft things from our cats' access (we know one has FUS, but last night we saw a puddle where the OTHER cat was laying earlier) by closing off access to the bedrooms, ensuring no clothes are on the floor, removing the futon from the living room floor, and just providing two cat beds for them to lay in. That would take care of everything except for some carpet. I have no idea how much this problem is behavioral and how much is incontinence - I suspect some of both (that is, incontinence to start with, but then maybe some behavioral issue after they got used to peeing on various places). And we'll add a second litter box so the litter is effectively cleaner (same amount of waste going into twice as much litter).

Any other ideas? Have other people been there? My DH is talking about putting one cat outside, permenantly. I really don't want to, though. He's not being draconian; he cares about the cats, and he cares about animals in general. But I have to admit, the idea of another 10 years of peeing in the house seems beyond reason to me... our guest room is so smelly I get a headache if the door is open, and our front porch also greets our visitors with the lovely aroma. I will get the guest room under control, but it just seems like such an overwhelming task to clean it all up.
post #5 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by laohaire View Post
It's a tough situation for us. We love our cats but there is pee EVERYWHERE. We've gone to the vet 4 times, at the tune of approximately $150-200 per visit (including the meds, labs, etc.). We had to cancel a visit to visit my parents because we couldn't afford both the vet visits and the flight down. I am afraid this is going to be a lifelong thing. I don't mind the occasional accident much, it happens. But now it's like there is a new puddle of pee once or twice a DAY on a bed, carpet, the futon on the floor that DD plays on, the pile of yesterday's clothes we left on the floor before going to bed, etc.
That has definately got to be tough.

Quote:
And we'll add a second litter box so the litter is effectively cleaner (same amount of waste going into twice as much litter).
I would definately add another litter box. I would recommend providing at least one litter box per cat, plus an extra one if you can manage it (and scoop daily). It may help reduce the accidents if they have more options (especially if they need to get to a litter box in a hurry).

I do know my Aunt's cat is VERY fussy about her litter box. She waits until my Aunt comes home from work before going #2, then will pester my Aunt and refuse to use the box again until my Aunt cleans it up. However, my Aunt is also a bit obsessive - she can't stand poo in the litter box for very long either (she puts each dump in a separate HEAVY DUTY ziplock bag and runs it to the dumpster EVERY.SINGLE.TIME, even in the middle of a storm : . I love her though.). So, they are a good match for each other .

Questions:

Have you tried another vet for a second opinion? Maybe even try a holistic one for some more natural alternatives?

Have you considered feeding them a raw diet?

How old were they when they were spayed/neutered?

Quote:
My DH is talking about putting one cat outside, permenantly. I really don't want to, though. He's not being draconian; he cares about the cats, and he cares about animals in general. But I have to admit, the idea of another 10 years of peeing in the house seems beyond reason to me...
I can TOTALLY understand why he would want to do that. Cat pee is a VERY unpleasent smell. You can have a nice clean home, but all people will notice is the smell. However, I do hope it does not come to that point - tame cats really are not equiped to handle the outdoors.

Quote:
our guest room is so smelly I get a headache if the door is open, and our front porch also greets our visitors with the lovely aroma. I will get the guest room under control, but it just seems like such an overwhelming task to clean it all up.
I know you must be completely overwhelmed. If you can manage it, I would say spend a day or two totally striping those rooms clean and airing them out. Wash everything you can get your hands on. You see, if you just spot clean up the pee (which is understandable given your situation), to us it may smell and seem clean. However, cats have a far more sensitive nose than us, and if you don't neutrelize the smell 100%, they will still smell where they peed before, and will repeat the behavior. While you are doing this, is it possible to find a sympathetic friend or family member to take the cats to their home for a day or two? That way you can see if they are still repeating the behavior in a different environment. Also, one may be triggering the other to do the same behavior, so separating them for a trial period may be another option.

Anyways, I hope you are able to solve this challenging problem. Best of luck!
post #6 of 9
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Zamber View Post
Questions:

Have you tried another vet for a second opinion? Maybe even try a holistic one for some more natural alternatives?

Have you considered feeding them a raw diet?

How old were they when they were spayed/neutered?
Another vet - good idea, if we decide to see the vet again - we'll pick a different one for a different POV.

Raw diet for animals is something I've heard of, and will look into. In the meantime we are feeding them a higher quality food made for cats with urinary problems. I actually wonder if the cats would even eat a hunk of raw meat since they have been fed dry crap food since forever. Next time we're at the grocery store maybe I'll pick up a hunk as a trial. This is gonna go over real well with DH, who is vegetarian (I'm pescatarian) lol He's going to want to buy like a separate refrigerator for the hunk of meat

The male cat was very young when neutered - I don't remember, maybe 6 or 8 weeks. The female cat was spayed around 1 year, I'm guessing - she came to the animal shelter after a "teenage pregnancy" and we adopted her, already spayed, from there.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zamber View Post
I can TOTALLY understand why he would want to do that. Cat pee is a VERY unpleasent smell. You can have a nice clean home, but all people will notice is the smell. However, I do hope it does not come to that point - tame cats really are not equiped to handle the outdoors.
I agree. DH and I are still willing to deal with it, and in fact yesterday DH remarked that pee isn't the end of the world, and it will fade eventually (you know, the lingering smell you can't get out no matter how much you clean). As I've mentioned, we can handle the occasional accident. The great news is we haven't discovered any accidents for a couple of days, so maybe the medicine is helping.

The absolute worst case scenario, I think, would be that we put the cat outside a lot of the time, but not all the time. We have a front porch and probably are going to put a cat door in the front door (that leads between the front porch and outside) regardless of what happens with the pee (the male cat loves to go outside and we chose a house at the end of a dead end street and with a state forest in the backyard partly for the cat) and therefore he would have a protected place, with food and water and even a heated cat house (yes, we have a heated cat house. No, he's never had to use it ). But that's the worst case scenario.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Zamber View Post
I know you must be completely overwhelmed. If you can manage it, I would say spend a day or two totally striping those rooms clean and airing them out. Wash everything you can get your hands on. You see, if you just spot clean up the pee (which is understandable given your situation), to us it may smell and seem clean. However, cats have a far more sensitive nose than us, and if you don't neutrelize the smell 100%, they will still smell where they peed before, and will repeat the behavior. While you are doing this, is it possible to find a sympathetic friend or family member to take the cats to their home for a day or two? That way you can see if they are still repeating the behavior in a different environment. Also, one may be triggering the other to do the same behavior, so separating them for a trial period may be another option.
We're working on the guest room, which is the primary problem area. We've shut the door and no cats are allowed in there anymore. We've gotten it to the point where we don't smell any more pee, but I think we'll keep them out of the room for quite some time (a month or two, maybe). I already bought 2 cat beds and put them in alternative rooms so they can create new habits, and we are being very careful about putting any other soft stuff on the floor (laundry, etc.). Unfortunately we don't have any nearby friends or family who could take them for a bit, but it's a good idea.

Thanks for your ideas and encouragement! I'd be interested to hear more about the raw diet and the neuter/spaying and how they might help or have contributed to the problem.
post #7 of 9
Sometimes that cat pee smell lingers in carpet and upholstry. I had a few things that seemed pretty odor free until the house got damp and humid, then it smelled all over again. But I've had good luck with the Nature's Miracle mentioned. If I make sure to really heavily saturate the smelly area, it's really done the trick. So get the *big* jug, lol.
post #8 of 9
Natures Miracle, it actually contains an enzyme that eats the cause of the smell. I got rotten fish smell out of the back of my car after dh went fishing and the ice chest leaked.The stuff really is a miracle. They have a special cat formula also.
post #9 of 9
I think you addressing their diet is a terrific idea. I have a female who suffers from constant struvite crystals in her urine, which develop into bladder stone and cause her to have difficult, painful and bloody urination, and the only thing that has helped so far is the Science Diet prescription food. However, there's a limit on how long you're supposed to feed that, because it has high levels of other ingredients that can cause damage to other organs over the long term.

So...after reading and reading, I think we're going to switch to a natural diet - I'm going to try to aim for raw, but I am aware that my limitations are such that it's going to be baby steps. I found this brand that actually sells prepackaged, frozen raw food, and it seems like they have reasonable prices, but until we can afford to buy that, I'm supplementing Daisy with as much real food as I can. I've also read that urination problems can be affected by how much they drink (duh), so canned food is better than dry kibble, and I also offer Daisy (homemade, but they have great organic) chicken broth and tuna water from the canned stuff when I have it on hand. She's really been resisting any additions, so I'm trying to stay patient, but everything I've read is that it will help immensely.

GL, and I'd be interested in reading an update if you find some helpful solutions in treating the cats' conditions.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Pets
Mothering › Mothering Forums › Natural Living › The Mindful Home › Pets › Best way to wash out cat urine from clothes/bedding?