Have you noticed your cats peeing in an odd place – your potted plants? In reality it’s not that odd that they’d choose the dirt beneath your beloved houseplants but it sure can wreak havoc on your favorite oxygen producers.
Cat pee can and will burn the roots of your plants, and while it inflicts measurable damage to garden plants outside, the destruction can be faster and more complete inside, where contained planters focus and concentrate the feline urine. So why does this happen? And what can you do about it?
The reasons behind this curious activity are many, but the main rationale has ancient origins. Since the time their ancestors emerged from the desert thousands of years ago, cats are instinctively pre-dispositioned to pee in a soft, loose material, like sand or soil. So, it stands to reason the soil in your potted plant might have some appeal.
Other reasons could be litterbox related – the box is too small, it’s not in the right place, the litter itself isn’t to your cat’s liking, or the box is simply not cleaned often enough.
So what can you do to prevent your cat from ruining your plants?
Try the following tips and tricks to protect your plants:
1. Blanket the surface of the plant’s soil with items that have very little allure to a feline, such as small rocks, citrus peels, and pinecones.
2. Use tin foil on the surface of the soil. Place tin foil around the plant, covering the soil. Place pinecones or mulch on top for aesthetics!
3. Wrap the top edge of the pot in aluminum foil. This might dissuade your cat from climbing into the plant in the first place.
4. Hang your pots from the ceiling. Keeping the plants out of reach is always a good solution.
5. Keep plants in a room that can be cat proofed by closing all entry doors.
Just because your feline friend has a natural instinct to pee on your plants soil doesn’t mean we have to sit idly by and watch it happen. There are several things you can try to give your greenery and flora a good chance to survive with your indoor cat.