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View Full Version : I can smell my neighbors' cats in my house!



MKSquared
04-11-2003, 09:09 AM
Now, I love my neighbors' cats. They're really sweet, really sociable, and they come over to say hi to me all the time. One even crawls up my window screen, just looking for some attention. (I've never fed them, not once.)

I live in a row of attached townhouses, and we share a wall with them. The problem? My basement smells like an old cat litterbox. It just reeks of cat pee. :( My neigbors aren't particularly messy or dirty, so it doesn't seem right that they would have unchanged litterboxes lying around their place. (They also love their cats.)

Any ideas on how I can get rid of the cat smell? The windows are covered by platic bubbles, so it's tough to air it out - plus, I wouldn't be sure that critters couldn't crawl in while the windows were open.

JHolcomb
04-11-2003, 09:21 AM
Do you think that *maybe* it could be neighborhood strays getting into a crawlspace under the basement and peeing? Because if there's any space under the house, strays probably shelter there. I don't know if it would be enough to make that smell, though, if there is moisture coming from the space under your house, I think it could. We had a similar problem (with poop!delightful!) in our old house. As far as the smell goes, other than airing it out (which doesn't sound like much of an option), I don't know what to do. Sorry you're having this problem and that I'm no help...I know it can be totally gross.

Good luck,
Jen

syzygy
04-11-2003, 10:26 AM
A couple of things that might help....

There's a product sold in pet stores, though I've also seen it in some supermarkets called "Smells Begone" -- it's organic, non-scented, nontoxic and nonallergenic. It comes in a white, pump spray plastic bottle with a cartoon graphic of a woman holding lots of flowers. It's helped with the occasional smell from the litter pans when the cats "miss".

The other thing that should work is my all time, tried and true method for getting rid of skunk spray from dogs. Don't laugh. Go and buy some Massengill's floral douche and put it in a spray bottle and use it as a room spray. I have had to do this too many times because of my over rambunctious pooch. She loves chasing skunks! The Massengill's works better than anything to clean her up (I bath her in it) and then, if the musk has gotten into the house or on the carpet (why oh why must she always roll on the carpet on the way from the yard to the tub???!!!???), when I spray the solution in the room and on the carpet, it takes the smell right away. If it can eliminate skunk musk , it should work just fine for cat urine.

Good luck!

adoty
04-11-2003, 11:18 AM
In my experience with cat pee (the previous owners of my house had several cats), I have to warn you that any of these solutions are likely to only be temporary. Once the urine soaks into the surface, it is almost impossible to get rid of it. That includes concrete, because it is quite porous. This is gross, but try sniffing around to see where the source of the odor is, clean it really well, and then try sealing the surface; shellac for wood, concrete sealant for concrete. You'll still probably have to do periodic freshening of the air, but that should keep the worst of the smell under control. Good luck!

m4star
04-11-2003, 11:41 AM
Originally posted by adoty
In my experience with cat pee (the previous owners of my house had several cats), I have to warn you that any of these solutions are likely to only be temporary. Once the urine soaks into the surface, it is almost impossible to get rid of it.

Sadly, this is true. Cat urine should be used by the military for something because it is the most impossible stench there is. DH and I tried EVERYTHING to get the urine smell off a spot in the carpet of our car's passenger floor area (when we brought Otis home from the Humane Society, he was so worried that he had an accident in the carrier that spilled out a little on the floor of the car). We tried all the commercial products, every home remedy, every natural remedy- and nothing really worked. We had some luck with this enzyme stuff that breaks down the chemicals in cat pee (it is available at specialty pet stores but is expensive). However, if you are smelling cat pee, it's most likely not from the kitties next door. Somehow there is a kitty going on your floor or beneath it like Jen mentioned. And a cat's sense of smell is INCREDIBLE! If you don't clean it up entirely (which is really difficult) OR remove the soiled surface- they will keep on going there.

Sorry to be a downer :( but I've totally been through this before.

boots
04-13-2003, 07:27 PM
It sounds like perhaps the cats have found an area in the basement they want to mark - could be a box or pile of blankets ect. or maybe that they could be they're spraying the windows themselves.
If it's windows or doors, I've had fairly good luck getting rid of the smell with a strong mix of bleach and water - like 1:3 or so. Just make sure you wear a mask or have the area well-ventilated; it's pretty brutal to breathe in the stuff. It seems to stop the cycle of spraying for my cats, at least for a few months.
If it's soaked heavily into something, like concrete or floorboards, the others who have posted are right, it's basically impossible to remove the smell. I have a friend who has tried everything to get the smell of cat pee out of his condo floor. It's gotten to the point where the only way to he can completely get rid of it is to remove the floorboards of the area and have them replaced! The earlier you can find it the better!
I love my cats but this is their absolute worst trait. I hope you can figure out where it's coming from; your neighbors are lucky to have someone who is so understanding.

HejazSunKat
04-13-2003, 10:58 PM
Originally posted by syzygy
The other thing that should work is my all time, tried and true method for getting rid of skunk spray from dogs. Don't laugh. Go and buy some Massengill's floral douche and put it in a spray bottle and use it as a room spray.

If it can eliminate skunk musk, it should work just fine for cat urine.

If it can do that I'm trying to imagine what it must be doing to one's...ahem, nether regions when used for the usual purpose. How did you ever THINK to use this in the first place? :D

Sorry I have no suggestions to offer Mary Kate but this sounds like a good one!

syzygy
04-14-2003, 04:10 PM
quote:
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Originally posted by syzygy
The other thing that should work is my all time, tried and true method for getting rid of skunk spray from dogs. Don't laugh. Go and buy some Massengill's floral douche and put it in a spray bottle and use it as a room spray.

If it can eliminate skunk musk, it should work just fine for cat urine.
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originally posted by HejazSunKat

If it can do that I'm trying to imagine what it must be doing to one's...ahem, nether regions when used for the usual purpose. How did you ever THINK to use this in the first place?
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Linda,

Many many years ago, when my first dog tangled with a skunk for several hours :eek: I tried the usual tomato sauce, ketchup, coffee grounds, etc. and nothing worked. In desperation I called the local Audobon Society Wildlife Farm, figuring that they occasionally must deal with a skunk or two, and someone there suggested it (and said to make sure to use the floral scent!). It was the only thing that removed the smell, and I've used it on my critters very successfully ever since.

I hope Mary Kate tries it -- it sure can't hurt and might possibly help an otherwise smelly situation. She may have to use it more than once, but it SHOULD get rid of the smell.

Leslie