Inappropriate elimination in cats can be due to a variety of factors. Dirty litter boxes, stress, and environmental changes can all lead to inappropriate elimination. The general rule for litter boxes is 1 more litter box than the number of cats in the household.
If your cat is peeing outside of their litter box the first thing that you should adjust is cleaning their litter box more frequently and assessing if they have had recent changes in their life. Recent changes in your cat’s life can include things such as the addition of a new animal in the house, a recent move, and construction in and around the house that can all lead to great stresses in a cat’s life.
If you have tried cleaning your cat’s litter box more frequently and also tried adding additional litter boxes, you may want to visit The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine’s website that provides information on multimodal enrichment for cats. http://indoorpet.osu.edu/cats/.
Cats that are straining to urinate, go in and out of the litter box, and produce small puddles of urine are at risk for a serious medical problem. Cats, especially male cats are prone to a medical condition called feline idiopathic cystitis where there is a sterile inflammation of the bladder and urinary tract that lead to difficulty in emptying their bladder. If you see your cat going in and out of the litter box, straining to urinate, and producing small puddles of urine, please bring your cat to a veterinarian as soon as possible because this may indicate a life threatening emergency.