Cats make excellent companions. They are low-maintenance, don’t require long walks or exercise, and love to cuddle us as we binge our favorite streaming show. They make the perfect pet for someone who works a lot, lives alone, or likes to travel.
However, if you have never had a cat, you may not know that these creatures tend to do what they want when they want.
Perhaps your cat is an angel, but a younger cat or one that is not very well-behaved can cause some damage. For a host of other reasons as well, you may have come to find that your beloved pet has urinated in or on your favorite pair of shoes.
Every relationship hits a rough patch. If you and your cat are going through a pee situation, you might want some tips on how to get cat pee out of shoes. We’re here to give you some great cleaning solutions that will work that substance out of your shoes so you can get back to loving your furry feline.
Why Did My Cat Pee in My Shoes?
It may be a complete mystery why, of all places, your cat decided to use your shoes as its personal restroom. After all, your cat is potty trained and usually goes in the litter box, so what’s the deal?
It’s essential to address this concern because there may be something deeper going on here. Rather than jumping to the conclusion that your cat hates you and wants to act out, you may want to consider that there could be something going on to cause this outburst.
Specific health problems can cause your cat to pee outside of his litter box. If you have found that your cat has been peeing in several places around your home, such as on the floor, on furniture, and in various other areas, he could have a urinary tract infection.
Other health issues that can cause your cat to lose control of its bladder include kidney disease and diabetes. All of these issues can be serious and require medical attention. So, before you scold your kitty, make an appointment with your vet to see if something else is going on.
Other health factors can play a role in your cat, not wanting or not being able to use his litter box. Older cats commonly develop arthritis, so while he knows he’s supposed to do his business in the litter box, he may not physically be able to step over the edge to get in.
At this point, your cat is going to go wherever he can get to. To solve this issue, you can try to find a little box with a shorter edge or a ramp. This will make it easier for your cat to get into the litter box and do his thing.
Other health issues can sometimes make your cat feel “off.” Unlike people, cats can’t just walk up to us and tell us what’s wrong. So, they tend to act out when there’s something not quite right with them. The best thing you can do when you see an issue with the litter box or urination habits is to schedule a visit to the vet.
Your cat may also be avoiding the litter box because of its state of cleanliness. As human beings, we all know that there are very few things as unpleasant as using a dirty restroom.
Cats are at a disadvantage here because they can’t control the state of their “restroom” – only you can do that. It would be asking a lot if we expected our cats to continue to use a litter box that was smelly and full of yesterday’s disposals.
It’s very likely that if their litter box smells terrible and hasn’t been kept clean, your cat will find somewhere else to go to the bathroom. Many people think that if they use scented kitty litter, they can go longer without cleaning out the box.
This is completely untrue.
The fact of the matter remains that there are feces and urine in that box daily, so it should be cleaned as such. Imagine using the toilet in your house but only flushing it once or twice a week. No bathroom spray and scent in the world’s going to cover up that mess.
You should scoop the litter box every day. Some experts even recommend scooping multiple times a day if you have more than one cat sharing a box. Cats have a stronger sense of smell than humans do, so when they share a litter box, they have to take in the scent of their own products along with their housemates.
Do the right thing and make sure your cat’s litter box is consistently cleaned on a daily basis. Otherwise, be prepared to find dropping elsewhere in your home.
Another reason your cat might be peeing outside of his litter box is that he is stressed out. Again, animals have no way of verbally telling us what’s wrong with them, so they have to show us in different, sometimes unconventional ways.
If your cat is stressed out or anxious, it could be due to a medical reason or their environment. Peeing in other locations not only alerts you to the problem but helps relieve anxiety. The smell of your cat’s urine actually calms the cat because it’s familiar to them.
When stressed, your cat might actually be spraying or marking his territory as well. Spraying is a special kind of urine, and cats tend to do this more when they are stressed out.
Do your best to eliminate anything that is causing your cat stress. Perhaps someone in the house isn’t treating your cat kindly, or your cat gets stressed around other animals. If you can find the reason, do you best to mitigate it and stop the peeing.
Type of Kitty Litter
Every cat is different and has different preferences. Just like you often have to toy around with different foods to suit their digestion and habits, you may have to do the same with the litter in their litter box.
Individual kitty litters can actually feel uncomfortable on a cat’s foot, and we all know that cats love their comfort. If you have found that your cat has started peeing outside of the litter box and there is nothing medically wrong with him, try changing out the litter.
Avoid cat litters that use clay, corncobs, or recycled newspaper, as these are all ingredients that can cause discomfort to your cat’s feet.
Kittens also tend to pick up their likes, dislikes, and habits from their mothers. If you have access to your cat’s mom or her owners, try to find out what kind of cat litter they use. Switching to the same litter as your cat’s mother may solve your problem.
There are many household products that you can use to clean cat pee off and out of your shoes. Cat urine has a strong odor, so it’s crucial that you not only clean it out but eliminate the smell. Take a look at these cleaning solutions.
Baking soda is known for its ability to eliminate odors. People use baking soda in their sock drawers, in laundry rooms, in the refrigerator, and in shoes to soak up odors and remove fowl smells.
It works just as well in a kitty pee situation.
A simple solution to getting rid of that smell left behind by cat pee in your shoes is simply to pour some baking soda directly inside of it. Let it sit there for a few hours and allow it to soak up the smell. After some time has passed, shake the baking soda out of your shoes.
It’s important to note that using baking soda will not clean your shoe, so you should still scrub out the stain before your attack the smell.
Vinegar is a super standard household product that has been used for both cleaning and disinfecting for years. It’s also the perfect solution to buffing out cat urine stains from shoes.
To address cat pee in your shoes using vinegar, mix even parts of water and vinegar in a container or your kitchen sink. Use a sponge, a rag, or a scrubbing brush, dip them in the solution, and use it to wash the liquid from your shoe.
As a bonus, you can mix an essential oil or a scented dish soap to help with the odor. Add a few drops to your vinegar and water solution to leave behind a fresh scent like lavender or pine.
Once you have cleaned the affected area, let your shoes sit out to dry. If your shoes still smell foul after they have dried, you can attack the odor with the baking soda method up above.
Another common household product, hydrogen peroxide is a great way to clean your shoes when your cat has made a mess in them.
Take the hydrogen peroxide and pour a small amount directly on the affected area of your shoe. Let your shoe sit and dry for a few hours. Once you feel that the spot is dry, take a clean cloth or rag and soak it in warm water.
Scrub the affected area with the warm, damp rag, removing both the cat stain and the hydrogen peroxide. Dab the area with a dry cloth to remove excess moisture and let your shoe air dry the rest of the way.
Be careful when using hydrogen peroxide, as it may stain certain fabrics or colors.
Sprays and Deodorizers
The number of products that pet companies make is pervasive, so it shouldn’t be a surprise that they would create products that address stains and smells. If you’re not interested in DIY methods, try visiting your local pet store or supermarket and browse their pet cleaning section. There are tons of fabric sprays, and cleaning products made precisely for situations like this.
In addition, there are also plenty of shoe deodorizer products that make it super easy to remove foul smells and odors from shoes, simply by placing the product in your shoe overnight.
While some shoe companies and experts will tell you not to put your shoes in the washing machine, many do-it-yourselfers have tried with great success to wash their shoes this way. This is an excellent option for getting cat pee out of your shoes. It’s practical, efficient, and in the long run, you end up with all-around cleaner shoes.
First things first: you need to check two things. The first is to check the material of your shoes. A good rule of thumb to follow is that if your shoes are made from any animal-based fabric (leather, suede, etc.), you should not throw them in the washer as it will likely ruin them.
You also shouldn’t wash shoes in the washer that have delicate materials such as satin or silk. These materials often require special care, and you will severely damage them in the washing machine.
The second thing you should do is check the tag or label on the inside of your shoes. Some shoes will have cleaning and care instructions on this label, while others might explicitly state that you should not wash them in the washer.
If you can check one or both of these items, try to avoid using the washing machine as a quick cleaning trick. If not, then let’s move on to the next steps.
The best way to wash your shoes in the washing machine is to start by removing the laces if present. Even if the cat pee is on the laces as well, you should take them off of your shoes. Leave them to soak in a solution of warm water and dish soap while your shoes wash.
Once you’ve taken off the laces, go ahead and toss those shoes in the washing machine. Because shoes are more substantial than regular clothing, it’s a good idea to prevent them from banging around as much as possible.
You can accomplish this by using a simple laundry bag. You can put your shoes in a mesh laundry bag to keep them together and prevent them from catching on the inside of the drum. If you don’t have a mesh laundry bag, you can get the same results by putting your shoes in an old empty pillowcase.
Even with these items in place, your shoes can cause quite the loud ruckus in your machine. Rather than putting up with that noise for the better part of an hour, try throwing some towels in with the shoes. The extra cushion of the towels with help prevent your shoes from banging around freely, acting as a buffer.
Set your washing machine to a cooler temperature. If you can set the exact temperature, opt for one 30 degrees or colder. If your machine has more basic settings, just set your dial to cold water. Setting your machine at a lower temperature will help keep the integrity of your shoe intact without damaging the fabric or running the colors.
Speaking of colors, try to use a detergent that’s color friendly. There are tons of color laundry detergents. Choose any brand that you’re comfortable with and use it to protect the color of your shoes. If you’re washing white shoes, then you can also grab for a whites-only detergent that has additional bleach to help whiten the color.
After you have washed your shoes in the washing machine, take them out and skip the dryer step. Unlike your clothes, your shoes should not go in the dryer. The high heat used in most dryers can damage fabrics and melt any glues that were used in your shoe’s construction.
If you can set your dryer to a low or no-heat option and a gentle cycle, you may be able to wash your shoes in the dryer. However, we do not recommend it and can’t make any promises about the results you might get.
Instead, choose to leave your shoes out to air dry. Put them in a room temperature area that has good airflow and ventilation. Avoid leaving them in direct sunlight, as the sunlight may cause colors to fade.
As an additional tip, you may want to try stuffing your shoes with newspaper to help absorb extra moisture and ensure your shoe keeps its original shape. Leave them out for at least 24 hours before putting them away in your closet.
As much as we love them, pets have a tendency of ruining or damaging things in our home. It comes with the territory, but we love them just the same. Cats are no different. Accidents happen, and there may even be a logical reason behind why your cat peed in or on your shoes.
Do your best to take preventative measures or corrective actions in this situation. Follow up with your vet to make sure there are no serious problems going on and tackle the issue from there, making the necessary changes.
In addition to changing things in your pet’s life, take steps such as putting shoes away regularly and keeping them in closets with closed doors. And most important of all, continue to love and support your feline friend – even through the smelliest of situations.