Oddly enough, I’ve had this happen to me a number of times now.
Not with my first cat. Not with my second cat, either. But my third, Athos, is at risk of doing this to this day.
(But that’s okay because look at that face).
I wrote a massive list of reasons why cats sometimes pee on their humans before, but that was long before I ever had this situation happen to me.
I’d love for you to go check that out if you still can’t figure out why your cat may have peed by the end of this article.
Now I’ve had him pee on me, pee in front of me, pee in cardboard boxes he’d been using as napping spots for months upon months, pee in a random blanket on the floor (though luckily not in a cat bed or cat tree as of yet!), so many odd places, and he actually didn’t have any of the problems, really, that that list contained.
The dead giveaway for me as to why this was happening came after I’d ruled out a bunch of really important things to rule out.
So let me go down the list of what I suspected, then what it happened to be at the end.
Why Cats Sometimes Pee on the Floor Right in Front of Their Humans
1. Health Issues & UTIs
Okay so this was my first thing to rule out, but since I took him to the vet and he was still peeing in odd places, I could rule this out while knowing there was still a problem.
Easy to rule out with one vet visit. But once you have, it’s a second double check…
2. Make sure your cat isn’t marking.
My cat was neutered and before he did he peed around the house.
But he stopped doing this when I had him neutered (he didn’t do it much before, especially if he wasn’t around other cats), and I knew he’d stopped because it would so rarely happen that he would pee in front of me or in a place that was outside his litter box that I knew this wasn’t the issue.
Also when he peed he really went at it. Not like a little wee try, like a floodgate. So not the problem.
3. Make sure your cat isn’t stressed by other cats.
My cats absolutely had anxiety issues at the start of their introduction, especially my first cat, Avery. But this third cat did not ever care and was never anxious around any other cats.
And over time, through using the techniques outlined in this article, I got my first two cats to get along, then when I introduced this third cat, there was a little friction initially but again, they got along in no time.
I’d watch them around litter boxes, and initially they’d squabble a bit, but with there being 4 litter boxes in my house (spread apart) and 3 cats, so that in case this happened a cat would go off to another room to do their business, this wasn’t the problem.
What to rule out next?
4. Make sure your cat’s happy with their litter situation.
I made sure my cat was okay with his litter box. Athos used it 99.9% of the time so this wasn’t an issue.
I made sure he didn’t hate the litter or have an unclean litter box to use. This was not an issue.
One time I noticed he peed outside the litter box when there was a stool just a bit too close to the litter box for his liking, so I moved it. That wasn’t a problem again.
But what about all the other times?
5. The likely answer for me: incontience.
I do have a feeling Athos is the oldest cat in my home. He’s the newest introduction because all my cats are stray cats and he just happened to be the last cat to be adopted in.
Sometimes when he stretches, his bones crack a little. I do my best to give him really good quality food and nowadays I make sure he drinks more water by mixing two meals of his kibble a day with water.
I do this for all my cats now because even though they’re all good enough drinkers not to get UTIs, I didn’t feel they were drinking enough to be as healthy as they could, which I monitored by how much pee I was scooping from the litter box a day.
I started adding more water to his meals and that made him much more energetic and likely to clean himself.
But it also meant that this problem increased just enough so I’d notice what was going on.
Incontinence. Or at least it seemed like to me.
Essentially I feel like he wouldn’t get up sometimes because he liked how comfortable he was, then when he finally did get up, he’d start crying in front of me and then find the nearest thing that’s soft, like a blanket on the floor in front of me, cry, and pee in it.
Or, if you took him, picked him up, and placed him on top of something soft like clothes or a blanket, or even another human (this happened when my husband put him on me when I was cuddled on the couch with a blanket!!), he’d just take that opportunity to relieve himself.
How I Fixed This Problem In My Household
Since, as I saw it, my cat Athos would essentially wait until he just couldn’t hold it any longer and then pee in the nearest litter-box-like thing, I figured I’d watch him for his most likely times to use the litter box.
This turned out to be right when I woke up in the morning, and at night before I fed the cats.
So here’s how I fixed this problem completely in my household:
Up to once a day in the morning, and once a day in the evening, or whenever I feel like he looks like he just might want to use the restroom because it’s around that time, I take him to the litter box and plop him on top of it.
Now my litter boxes are top entry litter boxes, so that’s why I said on top. Right in front of would be the right answer for a regular litter box or a front-entry litter box.
Athos will cry (his favourite form of communicating literally anything! From, “Okay I’ll check” to “Pet me noooow!!” to “Feed me!”), he’ll sniff the litter box, and usually go to the bathroom.
If he doesn’t need to, he doesn’t go. If he does, he will 100% use it right in front of me.
I call this process “peeing the cat.” Because I think it’s funny. It helps a lot.
There hasn’t been an accident since I started doing this and getting my husband to do the same around Athos’ more accident prone times of day.
Your Thoughts on Cats Peeing in Front of Humans?
Why do you think cats sometimes pee in front of humans rather than in their litter boxes? Has this ever happened to you?
If it’s ever happened to you, did you figure out what was happening and why? Did it take you a long time to figure it out? Were there multiple issues?
Love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!