What fun it is to be sprayed with urine!
Of course it’s not fun. And yet cats do it all too often, leaving a nasty mark on walls, furniture, and even their owners. Oddly enough, both males and females do this.
Spraying is a behavior that is territorial, sexual, and social. Your cat obviously is not making sexual overtures to you, so more likely than anything he is simply marking his territory – you’re his owner and he’s not willing to share. This is why he sprays in areas of the home as well.
To a human, this behavior is strange and best and repugnant at worst. But in the wild, urine has a very strong odor that is easily recognizable to other animals. Any animals picking up the scent of this urine knows that they’re in someone else’s territory, or may be able to notice aspects of the scent that will tell them there’s a cat in heat nearby. It may also be a social sign for other cats to follow as well.
Spaying and neutering cats helps to tame this practice. Their sexual urges all but disappear and they’re not as aggressive toward other animals so they’re not as territorial as well.
Sometimes spraying is a sign of tension and of acting out. Is there something different going on in the home? Is there a new cat or other animal that’s suddenly been introduced to your cat? Is the cat being mistreated in any way? Be very honest about how the children are around the cat and be vigilant about making sure they’re treating him properly, including giving him his space when he wants to be left alone.
Are you bringing home the scent of another cat with you? Your cat may be marking you as a way of warning that other cat and may be acting out of jealousy.
Social changes between humans can also traumatize cats. Arguments between household members, someone moving out, and general tension can make the cat tense as well. Be mindful of these things, and consider taking the cat to the vet for a checkup as well so that physical problems can be ruled out.